American Catacombs


In the dim chambers of the lowest levels of the parking garage dwells eternal somnolent twilight. It is cold, too; the kind of cold that seeps from the corners of places entombed in deep earth.

Things which fall here remain here. There is no rain to wash away the spilled coffee, dried into long sticky drips that stretch toward the center of the floor. No friendly disinfecting sunshine can undo the collecting or molding of misplaced, forgotten items. Instead objects are mummified, fossilized, everything being dried and pressed and dusted into a uniform concrete gray. An old apple carelessly dropped out of the flow of  creeping traffic is now a wrinkled wad, its color and vitality sublimated, as it oozes into partial union with the floor.

There is a drain, but if the rain ever falls hard enough to touch this place, the water runs UP instead of DOWN. The single round grate, intended as a point of exit, rushes and gargles under inbound pressure, a burbling fountain of runoff and dried leaves, as the things above push their way down, struggle to get here, vie for their own, so to speak, parking space.

It is a vault, a modern catacomb, an unnatural cave. The darkness rests here. It whispers to you in the hissing of cars passing overhead. It asks you to stay.















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