© Copyright 1993, by Diane Fenster
The Pink Bedroom, (152K gif)

Story by William Sakolsky

"Men are like trains; another comes along every fifteen minutes."

He was 14 y.o. and on a trip to the real live new york world's fair overwhelmed by the flourescence and the literal currents of people traffic of the underground subway station; Island of light and noise in the forever darkness of rats running burnished rails into tunnels of dark; a confusion of lights and colors blurred as people eddied with overwhelming push into the out of trains he couldn't hope to comprehend where to or from with names of ancient unknown territories JAMAICA! and whirled sounds of murkey p.a. throbs. When he saw it--tense drama of reunification past separation creates freeze frame of Asian three in crowd--two parents and a girl his own age burdened with bags just in from Idlewild off boat/plane, no English--train doors open and olders spring run gifts in clutch to swoosh for the door of must-make-this train. They insinuate on to look over shoulder only to see the real, pink girl losing footing on platform; no knife nor rapier to swath through the crowd as the subway doors silent shut, they spin round and the wide eyes of awe as through doorwindows those about to hurtle home with luggage and fantasy of the pink bedroom with princess and dresser and new life in Queens, lose their daughter in vault of time square with nothing but arc of anguished eye contact forever goodbye. He was 41 y.o. and in Cathedral San Juan. First he kneeled, despite his Jewish heart; eyes ablaze; gold and scarlet perfusions sangre de Cristo splashed up whitewashed walls arching overhead ending in tormented loftiest darkness and behind chapel secret passages mute with reliquery moans. Using full palms to straighten his fantasy pink skirt flooded with Vision of Bernadette--pubescent with trembling awe and visceral rage of righteous poltergeists--he stood saying the commended name before Our Lady where he lit another two dollar candle that flickered throbbing shadows. The name this time is "Fred"--temporally-wasted priest, shitting himself to death Inwood, New York. The windows depict Munche-like screams go unheard from those remaining behind while the sure-footed are carried above the firestorm. He sat. Palms up while tears rolled down his cheeks. Seeing windows in licks of color with angel souls of men named for real Rose and Fairlamb, carried off on burnished rales of transmigration. He looked up and saw their eyes forever for the last time as the doors in his little girl's heart silently slid shut.