We are not alone Abe says to which the white man his chin out scratching underneath says No no you have each other and isn’t that it? Look at this fine day after a storm has passed not only is it good for fishin’ but isn’t the sun much warmer much more welcoming after it’s been hidden? And you could come here alone sure and even look from that bridge over there when there ain’t a train passin’ look up at the sky and down at the water below and you can see shadows the Cypress even your own alone and even be content with that for isn’t it written Godliness with contentment is great gain? For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil. I know the Bible Abe says My grandfather taught me to read and the white man sighs ambivalent whether it is implied to what led from what he left out or just because he’s itching the mystery in it and he looks at me talking to Abe saying Better a woman sighs better even than the Sermon on the Mount I ‘spose but see here imagine yourself floatin’ neath that bridge yonder when a train ain’t passin’ Aaron! Benjy! for if you kiss a woman at sunset underneath that last glimpse of beauty… Yuck! Abe says and the white man laughs Yes of course what am I sayin’ what a boy finds disgusting now a woman finds disgusting in a man later because Man shows his love through sex and that you can’t self-gratify just like a girl bemoans her time of bleedin’ O stars crossed! and now he scratches his cheek red and puffy his eyes deep in black circles unreflective stone Photocontact dermatitis he says Fig leaves and light Damn! When it happened as a child people thought I was abused Speaking of which–can I take your picture? And I see he carries a camera it hangs about his neck obviously irritating the rash and with the flash he says It is not good to be alone it is good you have each other Have any luck? as he looks to where our lines lead out to the channel Catfish? and we nod hesitant to see our poles move like saying to the fish understand and take the bite what I love most you must love most and say to me What you love is the greatest of all what gives you your joy your peace your pain I too see and understand and say Yes well done even if my freedom is now yours I lost in what you love the white man smiling his teeth yellow with coffee and smoke saying Need I ask because you want me to? Who is the artist among you? Who is the better fisherman?

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