The fingernails of the waves

In New York, where I’m changing planes, the grass by the highway is long like green eyelashes. The border guard forgets to hassle me for once; the rush of the air on the road comes and goes in little gasps and shudders. It’s about an hour to Newark, says the handsome driver with sideburns that are just beginning to silver. It's summer, with the aging high rises raised up towards indistinct clouds, with the fingernails of the waves stretched out beneath the airport approaches, with memories of life out here when I was younger. The East Coast: where I haven't lived for almost twenty years, with its odd ethnocentrism, its patches of joy, its cramped traffic, its aging senses. It’s a landscape fuzzy like unbrushed teeth. In the van everybody is very quiet and probably wishes they were sleeping. It’s summer and now we're about to cross the Verrazano Narrows.

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