There was the time Einstein visited the Piggly Wiggly. Alfred has it recorded in a photograph. The photograph is really of a later time, that afternoon perhaps, after the Piggly Wiggly, when Einstein was standing on the end of the dock, having a quiet smoke, thinking something. Or perhaps it is a photocopy of a photograph. But you can tell Einstein was thinking something by the angle of his eyebrow, he is glancing at the little wavelets reflecting light, the black and white version of it, in this image.
The little wavelets are watching him closely and also thinking. Their thoughts look like trim mathematical notations and their speech sounds like untoned chimes: ch ch ch ch ch. They know Einstein can eavesdrop on their conversation. They like this because generally nobody pays attention to their remarks. Except for poets who notice everything but often get it wrong for the solving of variables however there are no poets present on the dock. But Einstein is remembering music instead of thinking about wavelets and math. Which is the same thing, as crabs scuttling at shoreline can be heard to comment to oyster rocks.
What he bought at the Piggly Wiggly we do not know, no one took note of that and we never found the receipt. Perhaps he just picked up some tobacco for his pipe. His jacket is rumpled and you can almost smell the chalk dust from his pockets. Bless his soul; he ate flounder with us, and cornbread, and then took a nap. The fishy odor of the estuarine rivershore lingers for a long long time as the tide goes out. After lunch, “I’ve been to the Piggly Wiggly,” he said.
Kyla Houbolt’s debut micro chapbook, Dawn’s Fool, is available from Ice Floe Press. Most of her published work can be found on her linktree. She is on Twitter @luaz_poet.