West Oakland Dusk


The sun is retreating from Oakland to the West, like always, leaving the sky a range of dirty pastel purples and blues. The moon has shown up early; it’s huge and all the craters and valleys are visible, even without a telescope.

Before my walk, I watched a video of three armed robberies that occurred two blocks from where I take the dogs. This neighborhood, this city, is always ready to show that side of itself. The evidence is everywhere. Burned cars. Stray dogs. Feral cats. It looks like broken glass rains down from the sky. But people smile. They ask how you’re doing.

I wonder if I’ll ever think of this as home. I own here. Lots of my friends live here. San Francisco was never my home. I guess it’ll always be Louisiana. That’s where I’d like to run out the clock eventually. Mrs. Lott doesn’t share that desire yet. But maybe I’ll win that war one day. I believe in attrition and I have time on my side.


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