You, friend, came to my city. As if the city breathed. As if thick soup bayou water and flying fish.

Bayou from the Choctaw bayuk, through the Louisiana French in 1710 or 1766 or 2005. These languages write marshy stagnant sluggish inlet or outlet of a river or lake or swamp. Slow movements evade verdorous riverbanks where catfish store their colonial coins. Frondescense hides five hundred million dollars in golden silver coins waiting in the muddy thicket. Glop. Stock markets explode. Glop. What wouldn't wait that long to be free?

For you, friend, the air was thick and helped you breathe. You rolling down down from the dryland Rockies across Panhandle plains and North Central Falls, the motel you survived brothels and pimps. Your breath smoothed as your pharynx supposedly relaxes. A place you felt you knew, this South from films and genes long removed. The refineries chuckled and burped out greater quantities of belching white smoke. The cruise ships moored on cobblestone coastal alleyways expelled waves rippling currents black black clouds of soot and incinerated waste. A miracle of the Gulf, you amazed: no continental shelf to fall off. The towering tankers lumbering by around the ferry boats at Bolivar. Citgo sells oil for the Bolivarian Revolution, sends tankers north to East Beach where we gape. Out there fisherman look for sand fish on the 22 1/2 Fathom Lump, wait for days for rescue swim to platforms appear at lunchtime sunburned and disastrous.

The water full of tar whitish pinnacles and the remains of sandbars made balls liquified and sand particles recreated.

The bayuk made history weighted charged with mud and silty bottoms. The bayouque drew our Gulf Coast unity traced our ways of life through folklore, right. The Ship Channel is the bayou and made the Bay orange brown and colorblind green. Water quality is reality. And so, when you asked what a bayou was, questioned me for its origins, I laughed and said, "There, allí, lo ves." El bayou, el que nos lleva de la mano.

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