Baltimore out

by Sje

We drive by in a loud bus. Rows of abandoned houses, boarded up, broken into, roofs falling, black with rot. We roar through.

No one has enough money. No one cares. Pay to care. Except for us. We are different! We care!

We are going to take the wretchedness and put it into an intellectually beautiful package; a portfolio that captures the hopelessness within the faces of those the busy world lost track of; a book of stories – harrowing tales from inside boarded houses and behind drugs and money and hurt and anger and blood on streets of babies’ first steps and tired, sick mothers who have the power of a single grain of sand.

We’re going to do this because we can and because we care and because when we finish people will congratulate us and we will feel good and maybe someone will open something in Belair in hopes of bringing it up. But it won’t work, as everyone will find out later in some job report.

One fine tooth in a rotting smile is not enough, she says. What a line! we think – and make note to use it at some point in in our important lives.

Then as we drive back to the harbor with its tall masts and glittery water and Miss Shirley’s Overpriced Cafe we forget the graveyard neighborhoods; the blank, empty houses like tombstones from the brick.

We are already talking about the Red Hot Chili Peppers concert we had to wait online forever to get tickets to, but we got them! And we’re so excited. And we think, there’s so much to look forward to.