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coming along the way: James Harris.(!)

"He's ball-peening along the siding..." she said.

"Is that what I hear?" asked Gaston.

"It's him, anyway" she said, shifting a foot in her comfortable chair.  "Always about this time, he comes along.  I think I can hear his whistle, too; he comes closer."

"I'm illiterate or illegitimate or illyescue to your concerns" said Gaston, looking at her, looking toward the half open window flap.  "Something" he said at last, summing up the balance.

"He's come for his get" she said.

"That's the vulgar, this one, this 'hell of a man'" he said.  He nudged his drink, staring at it, pensively.

"Why do you say he's a 'hell of a man', and like that, in that way?  Is that something out there that I've heard before, like a movie or something?" she said.

He smiled, and said, his Lorne Greene improvisation, somber, "at the bottom of that ravine"  he looked towards her, then the half open window, slowly, and time seemed to do that familiar creep crawl when nothingness was in the offing, indeed, the present vacuous moment just precipitously hanged in the air like a slab of butchered cow in a smokehouse--"lies one hell of a man."

"What is that?  Linkin Park?  Pearl Jam?"

"Lorne Greene, babes.  Ballad of Ringo."  He smiled, his smile stretching over his awkward jack o lantern skeleton, stretching far, "or something."

"He parks down the way", she said, lost to this, enthralled in a musing.

"This tappie finger-sliding fellow to see you?" said Gaston.

"Yes" she said, her lips barely parting, then holding part open, teeth punctuating the soft tissue, "James Harris".

"James Harris?"


It must have been an impossibly long, determined, slow-walk from his parking spot, and it gave her time to build up a decidedly wicked framing of his own walk, and maybe he too, having some thinkmeat time, pondering things to do with her to occupy his time, but as it were, the moment was just sort of in suspended animation, and they could have about any number of topics, and those at a full sort of length, as he click-clack tapped and dragged his way along.

"Is that really Ringo?  Jack Hammer Joe?  Georgia Joy or something?" she said, disconcerted for a moment, a sudden clack from the prolonged scrape of whatever it was from the James Harris--only possible if he had carried across a piece of molding, whatever, that a walking stick or blind man's guide, or something, a samurai sword or whatever, it might have been, for all her thoughts of it, she had convinced herself, and Gaston the disinterested observer, convinced of quite nothing, except that he wasn't, in polite company, sitting with James Harris, that he was sure of, he would go outside first, on his own merry way, while the whatever that perturbed her elapsed like the oozing of toothpaste or thread seal, viscous like oil, slow like time itself, markedly drowsy.

"The Bristol Stomp" he said, breaking into a chuckle.

Then the sliding-scrap of the whatever in the James Harris, it's little slide along on the siding, metriculated into a rising pitch, like the sound of a glass getting more full, fuller and fuller still, with water: a modulation, and a rise of the sound, from C to G and from G to A#, sounding more and more, wind along a tube.

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