The Other People

One sees them, then forgets. They appear as if in the peripheral vision. They may be what the Irish call “the little people” but they are not really little, a bit smaller perhaps, like large children . . . I’m not sure. They must inhabit the forest, the night. They sometimes appear in the blue-green light that precedes a thunderstorm. Once I think there were many but as we humans more and more take over the other places of the world their numbers diminish . . . I think. One is never sure. They appear and the contact brings forgetting, whole blocks of the past vanish from your memory. Perhaps this is true for them also, for sometimes they appear startled, unsure. Perhaps nowadays they inhabit basements, warehouses, lockers, scrap woods, the marginal land outside of town. I don’t know. They are like us but not exactly. Occasionally one will stand beside you as you stand in line. Standing for what reason? One of them is busy removing the labels from canned goods in the grocery. Hey! Then you have forgotten, lost the thread of a long, involved argument.