Sunday, August 16, 2009

Chapter 18 -- The Bridge To Nowhere

the 'tourist hit by luggage' sweated and huffed up the last of the Avenue, alone but for
birds he could not locate and the pfuffling in the stronger wind of the red paper lanterns .

the 'tourist hit by luggage' walks onto the Bridge itself now, nearly exhausted by its steep
curve (and all of the earlier, excessive efforts of the day).

at last, cresting its arch, discovering that it stops dead. cut off halfway in midair.

metal tube bars block further progress of the reckless. Relatively discreet warning signs,
placed so as not to destroy the view, balefully glare their advice in three languages.

staggered, he stares uncomprehendingly at the shoreline beyond, the scarcity of roadwork
on that side, and the lime green stone far on the north horizon.

he continues to stay back, well away from the end. turns to take in the eastward side...

standing on the pedestrian's side path, not even daring to lean on the five foot, heavy cement
wall, he immediately takes in the broad bluenesses of the sky and ocean...

the coast road, (the only road really connecting the two ends of the island), bordering and
enclosing a last lap of low water and soft sand way below.

He still could not decide where exactly he was--what island.

There was the declining business 'district' to the southeast, from where he'd just come, (and
spent so much of his time here already, in dubious pursuits). But, no spire visible.
No cathedral of St. Millicent's.

He recalled only fragments of the lost tour guide. Had some sort of block on the island's name.

He ignored the obvious metaphor of the half-bridge for his faulty memory.

Perhaps, the Bridge had been broken off by a massive wave. A tsunami. Or a 'too-sommy',
as the loud old man on the caravan had called it.

The tourist smiled. (Despite everything).

He felt it more likely it was another unfinished boondoggle. And had a vague memory of the
local papers somewhere calling the useless bridge a "promenade".

He wondered if there were any bars sticking out of the end , but would not walk there to see.

Odd that there was still a connecting road, (tho' it was on a rise), at the end of an inlet or
tidal basin. How the water from the ocean to the west (behind him) could just taper off and
end. Not covering the rise, and effectively creating two islands instead of the one.

He realized he was watching a limousine, running on the very road, (already on the north side
of the inlet). Curving 'near' and away again, at what seemed a slow pace, from this distance.

Taking in more of the land, he watched. Might be quite a clip, after all.

Maybe they left something undone.

There was no fencing up, as on continental bridges. A 'good' place for a melodramatic drop...

1 comment:

7 devonapes said...

Good stuff! :)

Ok, time to embarrass oneself with some rather poorly articulated thoughts...

1) Like the fact that this chapter gives us more of an idea of the island's (this one, at least) geography. The repeated layering of imagery seemingly taking a back seat somewhat of late seems to now give the story a further drive of sorts, flow-wise.

2) It's probably just me, but this story and the actual way it's unfolding (and is told) kinda gives off an eerie and somewhat vaguely nauseous feeling of sorts. Don't know whether you intend this or not, or if it's my own brain not quite processing what I'm reading due it being listed here in digital blog form as such, though is nevertheless a GOOD feeling to have when reading something as unique and odd as this particular story, one which also obviously contains a coherent narrative as well, of course.

Does that make any sense, or do I need me some shock therapy, Doc?

3) Won't make a fool of myself any further, though will end such muddy thoughts in saying that I'm really diggin' these last half dozen chapters or so very much as it appears you are now firing on all cylinders with this tale and know just where you want it to be led.

Looking forward to reading further chapters detailing the goings on upon this strange little Island/s you've so well imagined.