Wednesday, October 26, 2011

god of this city

between big box buildings of concrete and glass, on the street corner exists a farmers market. awnings and tables, fresh produce from farms shipped to the city array in rainbow mosaics. they fill the air with their musk, of creation and earth, of sweat in their birth. hand made magic marker signs in all sizes post prices, three for this, a bushel for that.. wooden baskets. cardboard boxes. brown bags. scales to weigh the pick of the day. a plate bearing samples to taste.

vendors are colors as well in personality, the ones pushing the sale, some just waiting humbly for you to choose them, and then those that come to talk and if they take less home than they brought, it's a blessing. voices on voices on voices as people amble through. the pace is different within the confines of this space or savoring.

at the fountain, where the sidewalk takes people back to work, reality and the road out of town, men, women and children sit, just a little removed and dip shirts in the water, sometimes bringing them to their lips to assuages the cracked flesh. they are different and the same, dirty, frayed around the edges, carpets walked on too long before replacing.

across the street an art gallery crouches with its back to the river, a man stands outside the stenciled door, wires and pipes, an old motherboard broken in the shape of a heart and a telephone for a crotch. his finger points up as if he is hailing a cab or trying to get your attention to whisper prophecy, old 35mm lenses focusing uptown. he is art. he is junk. all in the eyes you use as you look at him.

a few spare parts scatter on the side walk, finding toes that send them into the gutter of the road. how many has he lost and where do they go to find their own home. my son keeps any we find in a shoebox under his bed and dreams of one day building his own robot.

on Saturday mornings a Hispanic family unfold worn lawns chairs and sell the prettiest flowers out the lowered tailgate of a rust eaten white and blue truck, wrapped in pages of yesterday's newspaper, for five dollars.

written for Imperfect Prose.

77 comments:

rain :: said...

rainbow mosaics. they fill the air with their musk, of creation and earth, of sweat in their birth.....

wow. beautiful. as always.

TechnoBabe said...

What a wonderful description of humanity gathered in a place where nurturing grown in the earth plays the music of nature.

AmyLK said...

Lovely description of the farmers market. I love how you see the world!

Anyes said...

Beautiful eclectic description of a city's humanity viewed through your eyes. Thank you :-)

Magpie said...

You have a wonderful way of capturing all aspects of a scene and sharing it with us in kind and thoughtful words.

Christina - Rant Rave Roll said...

Love it! You have an eye for capturing things and bringing them to life with words.

Sue said...

I love words.

And you always do them justice.

=)

Mrsupole said...

A Farmers Market can be a place of much joy and happiness, each side making a bargain to their satisfaction. They are one of the last bastions of village life surviving amongst a changing world.

Great description.

God bless.

JeannetteLS said...

Takes me to the Sunday flea market and the Tuesday farmers' market in Lewisburg, PA. I hear, see, smell, taste it all. Just wonderful, Brian. How I enjoy your work.

Lisa notes... said...

"he is art. he is junk. all in the eyes you use as you look at him."

You always help me see the art, Brian. Thank you.

elizabeth said...

I can picture the scene perfectly through your words.

Rachelle said...

I feel like I'm there. That's awesome.

Muhammad Israr said...

wow man...it this is your imperfect prose then what about the perfect?awesome write up :)

Friko said...

a snippet of truth at the market place.
You observe and speak like no other.

missing moments said...

it was fun seeing the crowd from your eyes.

somewhereamelody said...

I love this line...
"he is art. he is junk. all in the eyes you use as you look at him."

I see compassion in this colourful portrait. I also see an artist's (poet's) eye for the beautiful amid the (sometimes) disparate and chaotic!

Your brought these people and their corner of the world to life!

Ruthiey said...

I've bought some of those farmer's market bouquets for five dollars from an oriental family. :)

Fred said...

Great piece Brian. I miss working down south, the farmers markets and the cultural aspects of the many different sections, and all the delights that have to offer. Well painted portrait of life, and keen observations. Great job, thanks

Bob the Book Reader said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Daniel said...

The juxtaposition of the two worlds is interesting. Kind of an oasis in the middle of all the goings on.

Tara Miller said...

The picture you paint with your words is delightful! I love the simplicity of the farmers market and the people as well and you're so right - lots of diversity at the market but everyone slowing down a bit and enjoying ambling through the fresh offerings.

Cole's shoebox of spare parts is bursting at the seams....hope he builds the robot soon!

happygirl said...

LOVE a farmer's market. Junk into art, not so much... toes in the gutter. :) Buy apples. They're in season.

Pat Hatt said...

The farmers market can sure be dVerse
And suck some coins out of ones purse
Captured all the sights and sounds once more
Through your "cough" stalking "cough" watching tour..haha

kaykuala said...

A farmer's market is pure luck. Bargains are there but real bargains are snapped up fast. Luck brings rich dividends. You pictured it perfectly!

Hank

Robert J. Gerryts said...

Brian,

My wife and I sell flowers at a farmer's market each summer and I just have to give you a thumbs up for capturing that sort of event with a wonderful texture of words.

-Bob

Rachel said...

he is art. he is junk. all in the eyes you use as you look at him.

^^ my favourite line. gorgeous and haunting, as always. <3

Myrna R. said...

I love going to the farmer's market on Saturday mornings. I hardly buy anything, but love to people watch as I sit on a bench across from the Humane Society's dogs, trying to get adopted.

After reading your poem, I think I'll be even more attentive.

rosaria said...

Ah, I can see them all. The last grouping, though, telling.

Syd said...

I like those farmer's markets. We have several here, one in the heart of the city. Great to meander through. So much to see and to eat!

adeeyoyo said...

Humanity in all its guises, trying to make a living while an art gallery, so out of place, has a modern sculpture at the entrance. A fountain for people to cool off. I could feel the atmosphere, Brian. But I feel like a stranger where these people all belong.

Chris G. said...

A descriptive short-short, and a poetic bit of prose - a lovely picture of a thing, and I particularly like the visual that comes with: "he is art. he is junk. all in the eyes you use as you look at him."

Sub-Radar-Mike said...

You painted the scenes so well, perfect mental images.

lori said...

Chris G.'s favorite is mine, too. Love the feel of life here in all its flavors and colors. The kids are on Fall Break, so we spent some time in downtown Chattanooga wandering around the other day. We were even serenaded by a local street musician. Providentially, he sang to me and my daughter about not worrying, his own original tune. Thanks for bringing that back to mind :)

janae said...

Oh our cobbled-together living. It is in the frayed edges and papers from yesterday that we find our being. Thanks Brian.

5thsister said...

You know it's a good story when you just want it to go on for a little while more. Made me sigh. Lovely, really.

Mama Zen said...

Gorgeous descriptive writing!

hedgewitch said...

This is smooth all the way, bri. Color and form and feel all ring true, vivid sense of being in the now and savoring it. Fine piece(even if it had an awful lot of lines. ;_) )Love the flowers at the end redeeming yesterday's news.

Sadee Schilling said...

A beautiful picture painted with words. A pleasure to read, as always!

Baino said...

Nice. Lovely inner city visual. Beauty is in the eye indeed and go kid. Build your robot!

Heaven said...

enjoyed the scenes of the farmers market "rainbow mosaics", the sidewalk and art gallery, sidewalks and the family selling flowers.

these lines though are heart tugging:
"they are different and the same, dirty, frayed around the edges, carpets walked on too long before replacing."

Mijayami said...

I love these little snippets of life you offer us, making every moment special.

Sweeter said...

Love it - the way you get your personal stuff, so common to all of us, be so special---

Pauline said...

who needs paints when you have words?

lifeisaroadtrip said...

Wow, you know you captured a farmer's Market perfectly. It doesn't matter whether you write prose or poem - it is always spot on.

Pat said...

You describe everything so well! I felt as if I were there.

william said...

you always write stuff that makes the reader feel he/she is there, thats your talent :)

oceangirl said...

sights and sounds of humanity.

SassyModernMom said...

I could see it, all of it. Beautiful!

Katherine Krige said...

great imagery today Brian. Love all the pictures you breathe life into. The pure, the broken and me all wrapped together

Betsy said...

farmer's market...aren't they fun?

manicddaily said...

It's wonderful that the vendors are colors as well as personalities.

Mary said...

Your words have made the scene come alive. Vivid poetry here.

Claudia said...

he is art. he is junk...and everything in between...depends on the observer's eye..i can smell the vegetables and i can smell the dirt..and i esp. loved..they fill the air with their musk, of creation and earth, of sweat in their birth..

emily wierenga said...

sigh. lovely. i'm with claudia: my favorite line was "he is art. he is junk." this, i think, separates the sheep from the goats, no? keep writing friend. it is gift.

Atlanta Home Security said...

I'm impressed. You're truly well informed and very intelligent. You wrote something that people could understand and made the subject intriguing for everyone. I'm saving this for future use.

Who Is Afraid Of Miss Lovett? No, Mrs.Lovett... said...

"between big box buildings of concrete and glass, on the street corner exists a farmers market. awnings and tables, fresh produce from farms shipped to the city array in rainbow mosaics..."

Hi! Brian...
Your prose is "picture perfect" very vivid in details and very descriptive too... as I walked and imagine all the sights, sounds, and
visions Of a son with you...Thanks, for sharing!
deedee :-D

Valerie said...

This one knocks the old favourite of its perch and becomes the new No.1. I have never come across such a scenic description as this. I wonder if I dare pin it up near our farmers' market!

Lorraine said...

your writing is everything I see and wish Icould photograph, you are extraordinary Brian

Lorraine said...

oops I have a ExpressionsL blog that I keep up everyday 'cause I don't have to speak

Zuzana said...

Dear Brian, you have a way of describing an atmosphere, making words into images in my mind.
Have a great Thursday.;)
xoxo

Old Ollie said...

Thinking this morning about how souless my city is...enjoyed your take.

Alan Burnett said...

A fine pen-painting : a sketch, but one which highlights cones of detail. "Sketches Of Brian", perhaps in a Dickensian mood.

Jill from Killeny Glen said...

You completely captured what I see as the MAGIC of outdoor marketing. It is pure pleasure.

Nancy said...

Love the scene you've painted.

ladyfi said...

Oh, I love the sense of colour, smell and movement in this!

Nezzy said...

Love the take ya have on a farmers market. Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder!!!

Great read once again!

God bless and have a remarkable day Man!!! :o)

Slamdunk said...

On a smaller scale, this is Wednesdays in our small town. For those who are not too busy to notice. I am glad that you are not too busy.

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hello Brian,

It was interesting to read about the farmers market. In towns this age old practice had been replaced and people go to supermarkets to buy their products. Besides people in towns have become very health conscious and therefor very few will buy directly from the farmers unless the products are cleaned and packed hygienically.

Who knows your son might become another Bill Gates or Henry Ford with so much encouragement from the parents.

Wish you and your family all the best.
Joseph

blueviolet said...

It's truly a magical place if we just open our eyes and see that.

Little Ms Blogger said...

I love farmer's markets! Everyone I know who has been to one, loves them. Which makes me wonder, why aren't there more?

Jen Chandler said...

Whatever city this is, I am there reading this. It's beautiful. The vegetables, the farmers, the homeless, the artist, the crisp newspaper holding the flowers: I can see, feel and smell it all.

Thank you for sharing this! Love it!
Jen

sage said...

Nice descriptions here, Brian.

Orang3 said...

wonderful description

Goofball said...

markets are so much fun to visit...so visual attractive

Josh Hoyt said...

Great job wonderful picture painted to create in the mind and seen in the eyes that are imperfect and changeable. allowing for the myriad of creations all brought on by the simple words.

Connie@raise your eyes said...

Love how we can see through your eyes as you turn and describe...such a bard you are.

william said...

indeed, it goes to show we can all get along in mutual circumstances, well written mate..