Don Caballero

Don Caballero

American Don

Touch and Go

Harvey liked working in the steel mills. At first, it had seemed like an unbearable racket, plotting to make his head explode, but as he got used to the job and the tasks became routine, he grew to appreciate the noise for its hidden complexities. All the disparate elements worked independent of each other, save for the fact that taken all together, they produced some of America’s finest steel. The music of the mill was as unique as that of the jazz combo he could hear drifting in from the window of the bar across from his cold-water flat. The deep clanging of a battery of triphammers sounded like bass drums, while the sizzling and splashing of the ladles of molten metal, yellow as a sun, swished like delicate cymbals. The clinking of links from the gantry crane chains rippled like seamless guitar leads, and the bump and rumble of steel being rolled onto waiting flatbeds could be mistaken for bass. None of these sounds were audibly aware of each other, but all conspired to synchronize into some complex and hidden rhythm, revealing flashes of beauty amidst the din of confusion. Harvey liked working in the steel mills.

Touch and Go, P.O. Box 25520, Chicago, IL 60625

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