Strolling through the ‘hood toward voting, hence destiny, I’m fascinated by the colors of the autumn leaves ‘neath the shifting red and green of traffic’s early lights. Again and again, green turned red by way of yellow, and I felt a musical pulsing, within or without, I was not sure. Could be the pulse came direct from the lights, whose changes synchronized with, maybe, every twelfth beat. New lights on different corners, I moved, semi-exorably, toward the schoolhouse, as pulsing throbbed frontside my brain ‘til I’m in one spot on one corner counting beats between changes, then beats, then beats, then changes, then beats, then changes again.

I was outside Tish James’ victory party. It wasn’t magic or anything, her base was nearby. I wanted to go in and be a laugher too, but those victory beats were premature.

Mere minutes ‘til the election was over, I still had not elected.

I re-hustled my ass and cast the last vote of the night.

In a schoolroom world, with my one vote, I had changed everything.

In reality, I had changed nothing.

But I’d done the right thing. I must have.

On my sweater, a sticker stuck by an elderly poll woman read, “I Voted.”

There was a flag on it. That has to mean something.


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