Let’s Go Out Tonight

Summer. Night. Car headlights pass. Sitting on the porch. Lighting the pipe. Lonesome in a way that reaches down to the bones. Seeing couples pass. Trees hang heavy and dark below streetlights. There’s yearning in the air, hard to explain. It pulls your head back and to the side. You squint against it. Somehow you can feel life in motion around you. Cars, sirens, voices, sound of feet. The hum. The sky orange black, no stars. And you wonder where you should go. Where you should be. No answers. You wonder how you got there. It all just seemed to happen. You wonder what will happen. You question whether you’re doing the right things and feel a certain danger in that you really only get one shot at it. In stasis, life flowing around you like a stream around a stone. You think of places you’ve yet to go. Feel the loss of places you’ve been. On a dark summer evening, alone.

And years later, the memory of an inconsequential night so piercing, so sharp. So sweet. Who can tell what you’ll remember?

About Steve Patterson

Steve Patterson has written over 50 plays, with works staged in Portland, Los Angeles, Chicago, Detroit, Austin, Tampa, and other U.S. cities as well as in Canada and New Zealand. His works include: Waiting on Sean Flynn, Next of Kin, Farmhouse, Malaria, Shelter, Altered States of America, The Continuing Adventures of Mr. Grandamnus, Bluer Than Midnight, Bombardment, Dead of Winter, and Delusion of Darkness. In 2006, his bittersweet Lost Wavelengths was a mainstage selection at Portland Center Stage's JAW/West festival, and, in 2008, won the Oregon Book Award (he also was an OBA finalist in 1992 and 2002). In 1997, he won the inaugural Portland Civic Theatre Guild Fellowship for his play Turquoise and Obsidian. View all posts by Steve Patterson

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