a brief, improvised concert just happened outside, the kind i think that björk or john zorn might try to replicate. the rhythm, syncopated, came from the empty lot behind the patio wall, as neighborhood boys pounded nails in their playhouse fort. something like melody, on the atonal side, came courtesy of a small child's frustrated cries. perhaps his wish for a merengue was denied--those hardened sweet froths packed down into wafer cones. the merengue merchant, indeed, made his way down the street, sing-yelling his quarter note announcement, a three syllable counter-melody that peaked in the middle like whippy egg whites. together, the neighborhood rooster and the hedge's laughing bird cried the counterpoint's third strain, punctuated by the passing gas truck's loud, raspy honk and the man bawling out its contents like a horn's nasal refrain. as a jet roared off toward the airport to the south, it's trailing white noise quieted everything to an end. it was a jewel-like, avant-garde afternoon concert--enough to elicit a brisk round of applause.