"a cafe, saturday morning, winter, two friends"

"Ah, you made it; been savin'this seat."

"Have you seen the meadow in this frozen rainy sun? It's like you can see the sun's rays in ice, lacey and delicate, like a spider's web. Man, and all these small, grey-silvery colored birds flocking by the hundreds, all moving at the same time, turning and shifting in large groups, separating and then reblending, without an accident. Group-mind, that's what it is, human beings can do that too, we block it."

"They're fixing the dock where Little Willy crashed into it. Man, he must'a really slammed that son-of-a-bitch, they had Johanson's seine skiff pull it straight before..."

"The leaves at the Fort are right at the end, a kind of orangy-olive wet look. You know leaves are always that color; it's just the chlorophyl, the sap rising makes them green. But what triggers this withdraw, this sleep, at certain times, seasons, and how did the first tree learn to do this, how?"

"I want to make some money on this snow tonight. Lolly's liquor store, before anybody else, there's a bottle and twenty bucks in it for shoveling her walk. Last time I had to race to beat the rain from washing it away."

"Have you seen the erosion out at North Beach since that last storm? It looks like the cliffs of Dover, or cave dwellings cut in at equally spaced distances. How did those weaker spots cluster like that, is there an affinity, a well, a sink that separates out and coalesces like and like, is that a form of intelligence?"

"Shut up, man. Look at the legs on this table! They put these beautiful Victorian hand-crafted oak legs under this ordinary oval pine table. Jeeezzzus, I need something in this coffee."

"All you can do, I guess, is hope for everything to work out and for what doesn't work out to at least try, for God's sake... family and friends are really all that matter when you get right down to it, or right through it, the surface of your soul. I can't do anything about the rest of this stuff; I'm not invincible anymore."

"You need a hobby, a project, something to get your mind into and out of your head."

"A life, you mean, I'm going to stave it off, if it comes."

"Stave away. While you're busy stavin,' you won't be busy being what you're stavin' for! You haven't changed much since I ran into you on the road last summer; a little less hair, maybe."

"Hey, I try to see beauty wherever I go; you have to keep your heart alive, sometimes it's all we have."

"Where's the anchorage? You start from there and work out, or act out; I'm comin' from a totally opposite direction. Real everyday life isn't a hand-puppet for your mind, this 'mind' you identify with, something that erases individuality and replaces it with attitude. And what do you mean, 'try to see'? Like it's a big chore, like it's hard, the surface is so dark and murky you have to peer beneath it with super-mystical eyes?"

"Like you know."

"Ah! Here I am swimming in your lumpy sea. It goes on forever, in every direction, the 'talk,' the hesitation, the 'wait-a-second deal,' the 'I-haven't-quite-figured-it-all-out-yet' ragtime blues; why did I do that? Why did I do this? Up and down, back and forth, where is that little piece of experience, that traumatic event, keeping me from being here, all the way here, relaxed and confident? On and On and,.., Jesus Christ!"

"When does Lolly's open?"

"Won't do you no good, I been sleepin' with her."