Not a breath of air

Not a breath of air.

The humidity’s high and I am low. It’s two-thirty in the morning and I cannot sleep. The windows are open but there is not a breath of air. There is no air conditioning in the house. The cat is stretched out on the hardwood floor. It is cooler down there.

A storm is on the way, coming across from the northern Plains, due here Saturday. Maybe cooler then, maybe not. ‘Cooler, Hilts, ten days.’ ‘That’s Captain Hilts.’ ‘Twenty days.’ If The Great Escape was on right now I’d watch it. But it’s not so I write this— whatever it is.

The older I get, the less I can stand humidity. In the 1980s my wife and I lived in Miami. The days of Miami Vice and Sonny Crockett when the humidity was high and so was I, so were we both.

We had air conditioning down there, of course, but in Upstate New York it’s not essential. Nights and days as stifling as this aren’t that frequent. May is kind of early for it. July and August are the worst of course, but then autumn is just a couple of weeks away.

I do love the Fall. The Fall and Rise of the American Empire. America was a better place when I had my very own American woman. She had a big heart and I was inside it.

She is not with me now. I don’t know where she is. In another world I hope. Perhaps the spirit world. In another dimension in the multiverse. But God I wish she was with me now. That’s why I am low.

I don’t normally do this at this hour, but since I cannot sleep I will make myself a gin and tonic, with three ice cubes. 

The cat will rise and come and sit by me, thinking it’s either a very late or very early cocktail hour. I will wait for the first light and the departure of demons. Maybe then I’ll be able to sleep.

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