The donkey. The donkey pulling the cart. The caravan of dust. The cart made of plywood, of crossbeam and junkyard tires. The donkey made of donkey. The long face. The long ears. The curled lashes. The obsidian eyes blinking in the dust. The cart rolling, cracking the knuckles of pebbles. The dust. The blanket over the cart. The hidden mortar shells. The veins of wires. The remote device. The red light. The donkey trotting. The blue sky. The rolling cart. The dust smudging the blue sky. The silent bell of the sun. The Humvee. The soldiers. The dust-colored uniforms. The boy from Montgomery, the boy from Little Falls. The donkey cart approaching. The dust. The laughter on their lips. The dust on their lips. The moment before the moment. The shockwave. The dust. The dust. The dust.
My condolences to the man dressed for a funeral, sitting bored on a gray folding chair, the zero of his mouth widening in a yawn. No doubt he's pictured himself inside a painting or two around his station, stealing a plump green grape from the cluster hanging above the corkscrew locks of Dionysus, or shooting arrows at rosy-cheeked cherubs hiding behind a woolly cloud. With time limping along like a Bruegel beggar, no doubt he's even seen himself taking the place of the one crucified: the black spike of the minute hand piercing his left palm, the hour hand penetrating the right, nailed forever to one spot.