On nights like this, when dogs and people on bicycles emerge out of and disappear into the colourless, porous body that has invaded our streets, and the ghostly phosphorescent eyes of cars threaten us above the ground, people start to wonder where all this fog actually comes from. No one actually goes out looking becuase they are too busy. Some go outside and take photos of the ‘literally amazing’ fog on their phones, uploading them to the Internet just so someone else can discover what they’ve probably already forgotten.
I hold your hand, feeling the bones through the pink and grey Fairisle wool, and the skin it keeps warm, locked around mine, and we go for a walk down the street outside my house.
Actually, this fog is kind of amazing. I’ve never seen anything like it. I can’t see anything besides it. And you. And the streetlamp ahead, the light diced up by a bare autumn branch. The shards seem to move through the rich, receptive grey as we walk towards, under and away from the lamp.
Towards, under and away from the next one.
Towards, under and away.
I can’t remember either of us saying we were going looking for anything. All I remember is we just got up from the dinner table and started putting on our warm clothes. But I wonder if maybe we might find something as we approach the next shattered ball of light floating further down the deserted street. Maybe in the asthmatic gap between door and floor, or the greasy wheel-well of an expensive car. Maybe within the barely shivering walls of an old greenhouse (I pick these examples out of my imagination as I can’t see any of these things. The fog has woven in and out of every available space). Whether we do or do not find something, I don’t think it really matters.
It feels good to not know exactly where I am for a change because the most tangible thing in this street is you: your hand in mine. And you seem to hear my thoughts and say, “Let’s go this way, puppy” and we walk further into the belly of the night.