Halloween

She was kissed by a large spirit orb on the corner of St. Marks and Second Avenue. Later, she stepped on a dead scarlet ibis. What a dead scarlet ibis was doing in the Village she did not know. She suddenly thought of a naked drag queen with a chartreuse headdress made of feathers, searching wildly in the closet for her gown.

Later she felt awkwardly hot. Her right cheek was flushed. Where the orb had kissed her, a rose grew. She hailed for a cab. The driver inside pointed to her face and asked what she was for Halloween. She blushed again, this time out of embarrassment. She said she was in love  for Halloween. Her honesty shocked her. All through the cab ride, she smiled. She forgot about the dead ibis and the drag queen whose fleeting presence in her mind had left her humming a song from To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar. It was Eartha Kitt’s “Je Cherche un homme”.

At 4 a.m., she woke up to a dream that lasted for an hour but felt like a minute. In the dream, she was running beneath a scaffolding to avoid the onset of a sudden storm. Late  summer, mid-afternoon. A quick dash in her periphery: a beautiful man with green eyes and a feather in his mouth. In the morning, she could not tell if it was still night outside.

She felt a rustling through the window that brushed her right shoulder. She began to    speak. It was French that flowed vividly from her mouth. She could see and touch every word. The wind stopped at the door where it turned cold.

At 4:01 a.m. she realized she was still dreaming. She woke herself up. She was naked in the closet searching for a pair of shoes she had not worn since last summer, beneath the scaffolding on the corner of St. Marks and Second Avenue. There was not ghost; she didn’t believe in ghosts.

She wasn’t searching for anything and she certainly wasn’t in love. What she was was wide awake at 4:02 a.m., suddenly wearing a pair of red shoes with a broken heel on the right foot.

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