Study of Music

When I walk in it's like a congregation of the city's most beautiful people. It's an enormous open space full of messenger bags and blue-black shags, septums, labrets and propaganda literature. I'm standing on my toes in this sea of people, trying to see over shags and chelseas and devil locks. I crane my neck to see the stage. The drum beats are sounding in my chest and for a second I'm not sure which beat is my heart and which beat is the song. I imagine the electrical surges running through me like blood, guitar strings woven like skin, drum stick bones and I think, "I can be made entirely of this band." I flash a smile of gratitude as if to say, "Thank you, thank you for making me, thank you for me."

There's this kid standing next to me with a camera in one hand and the other limp at his side, his head bobs with the beat (from the drums? from my chest?) and I want to lace my fingers with his. Just for one moment. Just imagine. You are not alone. We are not alone.

After half of a set, the song comes on. The anthem to my life, the song that reminds me of everything I have ever lived for, lived through, lived without. All of a sudden in my mind everyone drops away and it's just me in this massive room, acoustics flying off the walls and pummelling into me. Avey Tare looks at me as though to say, "I know." That's what it's about. Someone knows.

And for the duration of this song, for whatever four and a half minutes, I am okay. I am complete. I am alone but it's okay, because I have myself and for once, I am enough for me. I can fulfill everything that I desire because this song is driving something through me. This song is driving me so far from this urban wasteland.

By the end of the night I smell like cigarette smoke and tangerines. I burn myself with a cigarette butt in the palm because I forget that I'm holding it. I watch masses of people pass me by without a glance and wonder where they're going, why they're rushing, where they're going to be at the end of the night. On the streets? At the bar? Downtown, my favourite pedestrian is the business women in running shoes, clutching clunky high heels in her hands. She rushes away from the hookers and pushers to the subway to her home at the middle-class apartment building in the upper-class division of a seedy neighborhood. She pretends to read the paper, but she's just falling asleep. She misses her stop. She misses it every night.