Academic journal article Field

Déjà-Vu, or How We Got out of the Swamp

Academic journal article Field

Déjà-Vu, or How We Got out of the Swamp

Article excerpt

Maybe it's not déjà-vu. Maybe I've just been pretty busy

repeating myself. Dialogue exact. Trees in the right places.

Nothing spooky about it at all. Guys and gals kicking

their legs in the air. Audience singing along.

The whole score memorized years ago. We like thinking

it's the spirit world talking to us. Something Edgar Allan Poe

about it. And where did that teacher go who read us

those stories with such aplomb? We were 12,13, ready for the world

being that strange, and all our actions coming back at us.

Missing cat. Heart bricked up in a wall. People milling

about in the street. It's coming back to me now. The audience

restive. Someone out there in the dark with a tickle in her throat.

Lately I've been thinking about evolution. How we came up

out of the swamp. Crick in the throat, some part of us

trying to breathe but the breathing piece missing.

No gills. No fins. And the air impossible. Today,

the saleswoman on her iPad tapping inch-long

glossy nails against the screen. All of us waiting

for central office to explain some bizarre new charge

on the rental car. …

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