Cruising these residential Sunday streets in dry August sunlight: what offends us is the sanities: the houses in pedantic rows, the planted sanitary trees, assert levelness of surface like a rebuke to the dent in our car door. No shouting here, or shatter of glass; nothing more abrupt than the rational whine of a power mower cutting a straight swath in the discouraged grass.
But though the driveways neatly sidestep hysteria by being even, the roofs all display the same slant of avoidance to the hot sky, certain things: the smell of spilled oil a faint sickness lingering in the garages, a splash of paint on brick surprising as a bruise, a plastic hose poised in a vicious coil; even the too-fixed stare of the wide windows
give momentary access to the landscape behind or under the future cracks in the plaster
when the houses, capsized, will slide obliquely into the clay seas, gradual as glaciers that right now nobody notices.
That is where the City Planners with the insane faces of political conspirators are scattered over unsurveyed territories, concealed from each other, each in his own private blizzard;
guessing directions, they sketch transitory lines rigid as wooden borders on a wall in the white vanishing air
tracing the panic of suburb order in a bland madness of snows