“Bolero” by Ravel
One June night, I wake on the couch. Carl’s playing the Bolero beat on the snaredrum. Someone on Youtube’s taking the melody. I start dying. Things happen slowly. You lose a few toenails and think, well, a few toenails the less. I try digging my feet further into the kitchen floor. Bolero (Carl is playing it again) thrums. Stop, I say. Why, he says. We notice the children in a state of simultaneous bloom and decline. Bolero (Carl whistles it out the window) is what they fall to at the die-ins. Bolero is Pluto’s pick for the planetary-gear-shifting anthem. Bolero for when the tsunami comes. Carl says, But yr the love of my life (he hasn’t stopped drumming). I’m sorry I’m dying, I say. These damn planetary gears are hairline-cracking my heart. Oh no baby, he says, drumming, it’s Gearhart, that new disease they named after Matt Hart, patient zero of this great & terrible epidemic.
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