A descriptive piece I wrote during my trip to China

Occasionally we would pass a plane, stationary in the air; frozen, snagged in the thick smog; as if a single giant invisible thread was affixed to the centre, suspended; an oafish father dangles a toy in front of his child’s face. The road was never still; cars constantly change lanes like finicky toddlers unsatisfied with their positions. Below, a man stands under a door frame, perfectly still, staring at the ground. Lines and lines of trees with half painted trunks pass by: white from halfway down; a collection of embarrassingly tanned tourists. In the distance grey shapes circle each other. A glimmering sea assaults the eyes; only after the light fades can you see that it’s a million cars parked across the dirt and sand. Jagged teeth on cranes and towers smile at us. How beautiful does that pale white smoke billow and expand and grow and dissipate into clouds that fade into wisps, then nothing. Twins and triplets and quadruplets of buildings blend into one. Misshapen roads crafted apart from one another form an ugly apparition in the distance: a jigsaw puzzle where the pieces are forced together stretched from one side of the horizon to the other, suspended above their brothers by blocks upon blocks of concrete and cement. From afar, those cranes perched atop skyscrapers are enormous compass needles. Herds of mechanical leviathans, industrial beasts, huge great stinking creatures meander, tilt, topple, stumble, stomp: cast-iron titans bellow, fuming with smoke as their rivets throb. The alphas have pointed horns with great spires protruding out; a sharp and angry finger pointed towards the heavens: an accusing member at the ones who have forgotten them. A sign wobbles below a train station ceiling, its sides rusted and font outdated. Shadows form triangles from squares.

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One thought on “A descriptive piece I wrote during my trip to China”

  1. “Herds of mechanical leviathans, industrial beasts, huge great stinking creatures meander, tilt, topple, stumble, stomp: cast-iron titans bellow, fuming with smoke…” Love this description. You could paint it or compose music for it.

    Like

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