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i am the basement

Where do the people come from? They climb up out of tunnels or step down off bridges. They arrive from different times and directions. Their mouths all look the same. It's stupid how I try to escape into the woods, knowing full well they can eat through trees. But sunlight has re-assigned me to different duties. I now work Friday through Monday in a small room off a Chinatown alleyway. I spend hours picking seaweed from delicate timepieces. The owner doesn't pay me money, but serves me really good green tea and lets me fuck his daughters. One of the girls recently drove me to south city. We spent the afternoon wandering around a warehouse owned by her family. Rows and rows of shelves were stacked with old aquariums from floor to ceiling. The whole place smelled of old water and death. I held her hand and tried to tell her about deserts falling from cooked blue skies and empty farmhouses sinking into dry grass. But she broke free and ran and stood in a shaft of light pouring through a hole in the roof. She stood there rigid and staring straight ahead--the way people look when elevator doors shut and they expect to be lifted to a higher place.

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