Saturday, December 31, 2022

Quote of the Hour: Busking

On the glass platform stands Adalgiso the Apostle-Fingered, playing his viola with six fingers on each hand. He is bald, with a felt hat that does not sit quite right on his head. Beside him is Assia, the Nymph of the Phonograph., She is singing tenor, her smoke-throated voice pressing long kisses against his strings. His playing is so quick and lovely that the trains stop to listen, inclining on the rails and opening their doors to catch the glissandos spilling from him. His instrument case lies open at his feet, and each passenger who takes the Marginalia Line brings his fee - single pearls, dropped one by one into the leather case until it overflows like a pitcher of milk. In the corners of the station, cockroaches with fiber-optic wings scrape the tiles with their feet, and their scraping keeps the beat for the player and his singer.

 - Catherynne M. Valente, Palimpsest, pp.46-47

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