Chaos Theory & the Nuclear Family   
 
 
 SUNDAY IN RIVERSIDE PARK the Fathers fix their sons in
 place, nailing them magically to the grass with baleful
 ensorcelling stares of milky camaraderie, & force them to
 throw baseballs back & forth for hours.  The boys almost
 appear to be small St Sebastians' pierced by arrows of
 boredom.
 
 The smug rituals of family fun turn each humid Summer  
 meadow into a Theme Park, each son an unwitting allegory of
 Father's wealth, a pale representation 2 or 3 times removed
 from reality: the Child as metaphor of Something-or-other.
 
 And here I come as dusk gathers, stoned on mushroom dust,
 half convinced that these hundreds of fireflies arise from
 my own consciousness -- Where have they been all these  
 years ?  why so many so suddenly ? -- each rising in the  
 moment of its incandescence, describing quick arcs like  
 abstract graphs of the energy in sperm.
 
 "Families ! misers of love ! How I hate them !" Baseballs fly
 aimlessly in vesper light, catches are missed, voices rise
 in peevish exhaustion.  The children feel sunset encrusting
 the last few hours of doled-out freedom, but still the
 Fathers insist on stretching the tepid postlude of their
 patriarchal sacrifice till dinnertime, till shadows eat the
 grass.
 
 Among these sons of the gentry one locks gazes with me for a
 moment -- I transmit telepathically the image of sweet
 license, the smell of TIME unlocked from all grids of
 school, music lessons, summer camps, family evenings round
 the tube, Sundays in the Park with Dad -- authentic time,
 chaotic time.
 
 Now the family is leaving the Park, a little platoon of
 dissatisfaction.  But _that_one_ turns & smiles back at me in
 complicity -- "Message Received" -- & dances away after a
 firefly, buoyed up by my desire.  The Father barks a mantra
 which dissipates my power.
 
 The moment passes.  The boy is swallowed up in the pattern of
 the week -- vanishes like a bare-legged pirate or Indian taken
 prisoner by missionaries.  The Park knows who I am, it stirs
 under me like a giant jaguar about to wake for nocturnal
 meditation.  Sadness still holds it back, but it remains
 untamed in its deepest essence: an exquisite disorder at the
 heart of the city's night.

 
 
    "Hakim Bey"