Symbolic Landscapes and Their Adjacent Uses

Below, an excerpt from my recent story in The Dérivateur. In the words of Editor, Beth Blum, the magazine is an agent for musings off the beaten path, framed around the subject of the city.

Beside the bank is an empty lot of land; an aerial photograph dated 1974 shows the lot as a void. The west wall of the bank collapsed last year, toppling the full height of the building onto the uneven, scrubby dirt below. A restoration project brought new sod and a lush covering of grass and clover. The Gardener tends to the lot as the municipality overlooks one project for another and the grass grows higher and goes to seed. His personal project transgresses boundaries between public and private cultivation in the alley (spreading scarlet stalks of amaranth upon the indiscretion of the wind). The municipality is distracted by a proposal to tear down the highway interchange. When the new sod was laid, the lot was bestowed with a garbage can. As citizen groups mobilize against the infrastructure project, collection schedules are overlooked and plastic bags of dog feces overflow into piles on the sidewalk…

You can read the rest of the story in Issue 1: The Street of The Dérivateur .

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