Table Three: Joseph Suglia

Table Three

You burst out of the Starbucks. You see a red Hyundai. There, against the curb, a red Hyundai. A Hyundai tangled in vines.

And the vines are moving. Festooning, coiling, winding vines.

You assume this is an art-school project—performed by an attention-seeking student of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago—and forge ahead, down Clark Street.

You sojourn southward. You drift down Clark Street, drifting spectrally. Padding the sidewalk. Toward the Clark/Fullerton intersection.

It is a breezy, balmy day, and the sun is bobbing into your vision like an overripe plum.

Sunlight spreads across the sky like a piña colada spilling across a grey table cloth, the cream of coconut and pineapple juice mingling together in a yellowish-white swirl.

You pass a shop window. On the window, the word HARMONY is painted in blue. The word HARMONY is bisected into sagittal planes—HARM and ONY—and you recognize, for the first time, that the letters H, A, R, and M are contained in the word “harmony.”

Coming toward you is a man with shoe-polish skin and white hair. His expression, vacant, is one of an entranced mystic. He is wearing a bright-red button-down shirt and black trousers.

Avoid. The man with shoe-polish skin and white hair passes on your right. He tongues the air as he walks.

A vicenarian woman passes on your left. She is wearing a white halter top and blue jeans shorts. She says to her smartphone:

—I literally closed my mouth when we were making out.

The wind is swelling up. You stare ahead of you as you walk. The telephone wires are shivering. The trees are vibrating madly. You look at the trees, moving back and forth.

It is the violently swinging branches that you cannot stop staring at. They seem animated by something other than wind.

Keep on floating south on Clark Street.


Copyright 2018 by Joseph Suglia



32 thoughts on “Table Three: Joseph Suglia”

  1. I love Chicago. You can get lost in Chicago. You can imagine things if you want or you can see the city for what it is. Can you see a lake marsh on a river, home to herbs that the natives like? Can you see a city burst forth because of the Erie Canal? Milwaukee didn’t have a chance. How about the city of big shoulders? Have you sat on Insull’s throne? Why did the man on Sandburg’s LIMITED say he was going to Omaha? What is Chicago today, a bunch of blind nobody’s who come out of the lake, escape from group homes, play blackface or talk about holding her breath while someone has sex with her? Sounds pretty mindless to me? Pretty much the fact too, don’t you think? Too bad! Such a fun place in so many ways . . . I like the Hyundai with the tendrils. I like the description, not the idea . . . Post post-modern sculpture is so . . . so . . . meaningless, unlike Ceres looking down at you with no eyes from atop the Chicago Board of Trade. She’s Art Deco after all, not Neo-classic. The Spirit of Progress has long been lost from her perch above Michigan Avenue, but so is her perch. She wouldn’t mean anything anyway without Monkey Ward’s. You’re fun. Maybe a little too hopeless. The human spirit is like a pendulum . . . Perhaps the herbs will return and the city fade away and only the ruins of Medina, Tribune, Wrigley, London Guarantee, Mather, Jeweler’s and Carbon and Carbide will remain to remind the future of the past. Oh Mark, don’t forget 333 and the river will never flow backwards again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your amazing comment. I love those who write outside of the box. If you would like a free physical copy of the book, please let me know; I only ask that you paste what you wrote in the form of an review. Joseph

      Liked by 1 person

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