The Wisdom of the UV

4 Mar

Sunday. Sitting, sweating, studying at a table tucked in USC’s neighboring ‘Village’, which is anything but a reflection of its University namesake. Well, maybe the Starbucks. Exchanged a smoke for a conversation with a local guy beside me. Lazy Sunday slurs at first, most small talk skipped, straight to the point: ” Why you in college girl, wanna get yo’self a better job or sumthin?” Inside I laugh: not at him, at my lavish honest answer to his practical question and assumption. No, I said. Inhale, smoke, exhale, smoke. A small cloud above his head. I said I like to learn. Mouth shut, mind opened, ludicrous life of mine more stagnant than the smoke and thicker than the smog, unveiled in the silence that trailed my train of thought. Neighbor wandered off a stranger, neighbor wandered off a stranger, only to be seen again five minutes later, a different face with the same brows raised at the intersection of the grey road dividing the sun-stained bricks from the dirt bathed, tar paved real world wallowing and working under Mt. Olympus’s shadow. Nose buried back in my Law book, lines of supreme court rulings, now more critically read in the space between as a history of discriminatory ‘ism’s. Two nights have passed as salient and awake as their conjoining days, spent loving to learn surrounded by bricks and book and the implied presence of ivy.

I could have done better on recent midterms. But ya know what? I really don’t think it matters. There was never a need for the princess to complain about the pea when she had 25 mattresses in the first place.


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