New York City, October 22, 2017

★★★★★ Gaudy rows of candy on the newsstand floated in reverse on the glass of a kitchen design store like misplaced merchandise in the dim and tasteful interior. There was just enough coolness to burnish the warmth. The walk uptown to the movie theater was more appealing than the trains, and it was a partial penance for spending three hours shut in the dark. A ukulele twunged by Verdi Square. A woman stooped to snap pictures of pigeons bathing in a grimy puddle in scaffold shade, as if compelled to find the bleakest thing in the landscape of bright-lit marvels. A big butterfly flapped high above Broadway. Every glance up at the sky turned up at least two separate and incredible things happening there at once. The high thin clouds after the matinee were gently separated into ripples, and the ripples were smeared together in places like smudged white color pencil, and then the whole surface of it had been slit by the passage of an airplane. A bit later, across the west, there ran a contrail that had been chopped into a neatly dotted line. Somewhere out of sight a brass band was playing, with a sound like movie music.