hands barely able to keep them in straight. Human hand reaching down to assist. Poor little guy. Couldn't have it himself, would it really have fallen perhaps it only looked that way. Human hands destroyed the glory, the fantasy. There are no human hands in that world. The puppets dance the way they want to, arms, going up and down, legs quivering in silly fashion like worm legs.

 

        Both puppets wear jester outfits. A pointed hat bends slightly on the head. Why must one be sad. That world is a good world. Human hands don't enter. Aren't allowed there. Dance sweet puppets. It's pretty. What's it like to have a wooden head and painted yellow hair? Puppets dance and tell us. What's it like to be open?

 

        The strings break. They fall down.

 

        Come back to life. Raise, rise up again and dance. Play with us some more. Please. Please come back to life.

 

        A man folded the puppets into a brown suitcase -- not carefully -- then walked away, with his case swinging back and forth as a pendulum. Surely the puppets must be dead. I prayed for the puppets.

 

 

A hand appeared on my shoulder, dug me with it's long nails. I didn't bleed. A harmonica played. I couldn't identify the tune. It sounded like ad lib. A persian guitar joined in.

 

        Yellow blotted every piece of furniture. The walls turned yellow. Yellow was the carpet. It became a giant sun looking differently at me, I didn't know what it meant. A message maybe, God, I thought not another smile button, we've had enough of those wretched things. The faces stared at it along with me. People shrugged their shoulders. I was still hoping it wasn't a button or message. Then it disappeared.

 

RIVER BED   29

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