Green paint peeling. Blue underneath. Then a graying, ancestral white lingers yet beneath that. Ice cream and bird-shit stained, begrimed with the hand-prints of sticky children beyond number.
Each coat a fresh start, but imbued with a stubborn tackiness, as if the time contained within each layer i(more)s still somewhat fluid. The events preceding each renewal covered are up, but not quite erased. The enclosed detritus of the past is more or less set, but still bending, dripping, chipping away at the present in small ways as a result of our living.
Thousands of strangers pass through its space. A little crumb of their lives happens there, and is forgotten.
Cities are strange like that. Both secret and exposed. Surrounded but alone. So public and pervasive that a second kind of anonymity can be found nesting within the chaos.
Of course big secrets are hard to keep. Big secrets can only survive in small places. But little secrets can nestle in cities, cheek to jowl, thick as thieves, lost in the cracks of the pavement, crusted in the mortar of buildings, stuck fast in the peeling paint of park benches, and in the flesh of its people.