"She paints her eyes as black as night, now
pulls those shades down real tight.
But she smiles when the pain comes
Pain gonna make everything all right."

She talks to angels-Black Crowes

They wandered into the stereo store half wasted and half lost. He left her in the CD section while he tripped his way over to car stereos, I guess another speaker had been blown out. Playing all your tunes at '10' will do that, I guess.

She was childlike, holding the CD cases up to the light to see how the color changed them and clicking them against her fingernails, just to hear the sound. If she had noticed me watching her I bet she would have giggled, because pretty much everything seemed funny to her it appeared. She found one of those little kiosks that allow you to sample stuff and she put something on and blurted out a series of reviews:

Nyuh, yuh,yuhda yuhda ,,,yeh, yeh..
Oh, yuk...duhh..yuk..

She might have thrown them down and walked away if she had not come across something she liked: a live Dave Matthews disc. She pinched her eyes shut, and started rocking back and forth...drawing little circles in the air with her fingers. Her hips followed along with parallel gestures and from where I was standing, the air was sucked out of the room. For the first time I could see the appeal of her chemicals. If I could enter music like that, become part of that place, it might make the numbness worthwhile. It would be some tradeoff- the outside world goes on holiday while I enter internal places- the music in my headphones or the rustling of drapes against the windows.

Suddenly, the image fell apart, for all of us. She lost her balance, slipped and fell, slamming her head against a rack. Small cursing while she tossed the headphones aside. Threats of lawsuits from boyfriend and a zig-zag retreat to the parking lot.

A perplexed store clerk saw me frozen at the scene and gave me a "Did I just see what I think I saw" look, shook his head and moved away. He seemed way too practical to ever lose himself in music that way. To ever lose himself in anything that way. I'm hardpressed to say who is missing out, but I know I can't judge.

I just know some folks fight with demons and dance with the stars. The rest of us watch and wonder.

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