Styrofoam lilies and carvings in asphalt

Dear Editor,

Like the Ancient Mariner, transformation comes slowly; then it envelops.

I cross a bridge and a trench.  Behold! A vast sheet of stained lilies of Styrofoam in a multiplicity of shapes, sizes, and shades of white.  They huddle in a tight embrace for comfort and resistance to disturbance.  It is a spectacle of rare transcendence, enough to gladden the heart.

I look down at my feet, and there they are: carvings in asphalt, amoebic in contour, compliments of vehicular archaeological disruptions.

They are deep broad etchings of beauty resplendent in mud, expansive in depth and just as welcoming.  One could bathe a kneeling goat in these manmade caverns; on second thought it would be better to settle for a juvenile duck.

These carvings-proliferating in presence-stand as testimony to the wheels of progress, and the weight of an untamed runaway civilization.Taken together, they form a patchwork-sorry, tapestry-most reminiscent of impressionist art.  They are enchanting, all of them.

Now wait a minute.  What is that?  Oh! Just look at that lovely creature!  There is another, and another.  My word, there is a whole army of them.  And so many hues of grey.  They are cute, but they don’t look like kittens.  Must be hamsters; I wonder what mother would say if I take them home.  They are simply adorable.

Then I raise my eyes to the skyline; it gleams in unimaginable splendour.  For a long moment, I can identify with, and experience, the rush of a pure cocaine high.  It is mind altering.  Now what is that over there?  It looks like a house.  How quaint!

Must be a historical monument, they are so rare these days. Yes, it presents a picture of forlorn resignation girdled by gargantuan stone and glass wonders.  There is something indefinably lonely about that house –looks as though it needs neighbours and community.  Still it ought to be thankful for the company of delivery trucks and forklifts.

These are the sights.

But what is that smell?  It is heavenly.  Oh, the bracing aroma of sun kissed, air brushed, rain soaked fish and meat and veggies, too.  Along with skins and scales and bones all seasoned from two weeks of languishing in the tropical streets.  It would be a really nice gesture to fashion two lovely garlands of this delectable local fare and present one to His Excellency (the president) and the other to His Lordship (the mayor) to wear at the next affair of State.

This way everything is above board and in plain sight.

The Diplomatic Corp should be terribly impressed with the innovative local techniques and craftsmanship; as well as the newly discovered fragrances.  And the two local leaders should congratulate themselves on the results of their gentrification efforts.  Health, inspiration, and optimism follow in abundance.

This is the Georgetown of today, our capital city.  It soothes the soul; even brings a tear to the cheek.  It is utterly delightful, and a source of immeasurable pride.  What ambience! How overpowering!  This is the place to be.

Yours faithfully,

More in Letters


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