Brian Michael Barbeito

We can defeat the day. What does it mean? It means the day is lurid and too bright. The morning sun burns the eyes and the afternoon highlights hard angles, difficult motifs, wayward and untoward in industrial grade things- walls, buildings, crates, grates, brick. And the day has other problems also. It is full acrimony that won’t actually come out and show itself. Ya, even in the bright light of the life giving star. What acrimony? I don’t know. Something is there, waiting to cause a problem- in the everyday world brick a brac, in the kitsch of the houses and smiles, in the guy in the BMW and button up shirt, or the way everyone walks. Who is to know? But, we can defeat the day. It’s been done before. I tell you. It’s a ‘sort of secret,’ but kind of an open secret. People don’t believe. It sounds too ordinary to be true. But the truly extraordinary hides in the ordinary. Here is how it’s done:

We drive far and far, past where the rain deposits itself in good hard shards upon the loam and the field, on the mockingbird and sandcastle lonesome and forgotten now. We drive fast, but deliberately paced and with curt surety. I know where I have been. I know where I am going. And if the sun and the haughty ones, the judgements and all the rest have become too much, we won’t worry- we especially won’t worry. In lieu of caution, we are going with the wild and unencumbered. We are taking the dogs and going to where the wild raspberries grow like stories without ends. Almost there, the sun is not so bad- its going away- ready to slumber, going down to as if into a secret pocket sewn into the earth far and far off…

Pathways. Meandering labyrinthine pathways. The glen and thicket. The good handsome garter snakes. Wildflowers bragging hues of yellow and blue, of mauve and the world fades to a darker thing from pastels to something like sepia to black and white to cool easy greyness. We are in the dusk, but the latter part. And the dogs are running. Back and forth above the summits and down again. Into valleys, preternaturally fast, like horses, and what did the guy there call horses?- he referred to them as Ponies, like a horse player would, like a real old-time gambler at Woodbine or Greenwood would on a Saturday afternoon in 1991 or 1989 or 1975. Ponies. Words. Nomenclature. Zeitgeist! And what is ours? It is that of the dogs. Dogs better than persons, better than the routine, better than the societal stalwart day.

Wild. Joyous. Intrepid. Full somehow of Providence. Valorous for the loyalty and honesty they show. And they think the dogs don’t think- that it is projection or anthropomorphization- that is what the non-dualists say. No! – Of course the dogs think. Running at sticks and wood, graceful, benign- sometimes vexatious or saddened at something. And we go there for a long time while they run and meander, while they rest and seek berries or water or others or something that evokes curiosity. Muscles, hair, gait, and prowess. Speed, agility, -even something Gnostic in the dance they play out whilst racing and chasing through the Pines, over the fallen Bur Oaks, and along then in the bog.

They and we. Walking at the night over tumbled river stones and fine grain sand, over the terrene earth taken over by the thick textured darkness. That is how we defeat the day. And there they go to race again and the sound pronounces itself like a pair of horses running across the feral shrubs and over a thousand crescive things and they and we have succeeded by being and exploring and going into the good dark.

Such is the way the day is defeated.


Brian Michael Barbeito is a Canadian writer. He is a two time Pushcart nominee with work that has appeared in various print and electronic publications. He is the author of the book Chalk Lines, [FOWLPOX PRESS, cover art by Virgil Kay (2013).

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