Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Friday, June 1, 2007

about the cappuccino machine of the hotel intercontinental in addison, texas

the capuccino machine, like the stalwart guardian of the long counter of the hotel intercontinental's restaurant bar, doesn't actually move at all. it has long ago forgotten how to steam and wail and storm out the beverages at breakneck speed. no one notices the machine's quiet forgetfulness because it looks so dignified there, so solid.

at set times, strong men massage the old machine with silver polish and soap. the milkwand rolls around like an elephant's trunk. the water warms and flows like a salute. inside, the water is still steaming hot, gentle inspectors, and one need not concern oneself with investigating the tired gears and pipes behind the steel.

the machine looks out at the whole restaurant, where happy people in expensive suits drink orange juice and coffee that came from brutish, industrial machines hidden in the kitchen like ugly ogres.

the cappuccino machine, my soldier of the morning, secretly dreamt of action. once upon a time, the espresso and steam flowed faster than milk and not a soul in the hotel opened an eyelid without the young machine's help. not anymore, quiet guardian.

ah, but i raise my hand to the waiter, and point at the stalwart little box that stares back at me. i'll let the guardian remember the years long past for a few humble moments of milk and ground bean.

soldier of the morning, i lift this cappuccino to you.

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