#TheDevilsMalware (The Continuing Adventures of the Gleaner: Episode 16 #AdventCalendar Edition)

The Devil’s Malware 16.1
Queensboro Bridge B&W 8

(We rejoin our hero crossing the Queensboro Bridge into Long Island City.)

Sweet Jesus on High!
Finally over the bridge.
Finally out of Manhattan.
Finally beyond Roosevelt Island.
Over the East River.

I’ve beaten the Devil.

I feel free and alive as I escape the Mobius Strip the Devil had me trapped inside of.
The rain has passed and the air is cold and clear.
The painting is safe and dry strapped to my backpack.
Sweet Jesus on High!

I’m free.

The Devil’s Malware 16.2
Queens Blvd Sign (grain)

I decide to continue on to Forest Hills on foot.
No more than a two hour walk down Queens Blvd.
No more snares and no more traps.
Sweet Jesus on High.
No trains and no buses.
If the Devil wants to find me, he’ll have to find me up here above ground.
On the street.
He’ll have to take me on up here.

The Devil’s Malware 16.3
Devil on the Street Sign

I suddenly feel his eyes on me.
The way he studied me outside the Duane Reade that closed down on 5th Avenue.
The moment I first saw him.
The same stare. The same mischief. The same mayhem.

The Devil watches me with shaded eyes.

Staring at me from the back of a stop sign at the corner of Queens Plaza and Queens Blvd.
A place where two roads split off and head in two different directions.

This is the stage of the evening where we face the Devil at the crossroads.

You’ll say I’ve gone soft in the head, but I can feel the Devil as he watches me.
And, whether it’s the Devil from Hell or the Devil inside of me, I can’t run from him anymore.
The Devil I made is the Devil that made me do it.
Face the Devil or never see the light of morning.
I’ve escaped his trap once.

I’ve beaten him once.

Can I do it one more time?

(Tune in tomorrow for the next installment…)

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