it must have a lot to do with the conversations. when it can be had about the billboards that riddle the streets, where capital and colonialism, consumption and crises, become par for the course, of that long stretch of EDSA that cradles the car from one city to the next two, as it shifts from quiet residential to sprawling Manila, the dip in the tone, the way that it sounds, onomatopoeic i say, a conversation you’ve been having with your brother you say. which moves us down other cities far from here: shanghai, islamabad, bangkok, and we stop at sin — singapore, towards which you are moving, not leaving, just taking a trip, you insist, i insist, we rationalize. there seems to be no reason to stay in this conversation of refusing to acknowledge the impending distance, from one end of the road to the next, one country to another, one long stretch of time between what we cannot say now and where it might lead next. much like you giving me directions in your part of the city, and i follow even as i might know a shortcut, an easier way, of laying cards on the table, letting it all hang. it’s too soon and sudden, striking but also surreal. and right now what is urgent is only: this stretch of road, a u-turn to make, a right, until everything’s left, you and me on that stretch of road, like the silences that surround roadkills, the swiftness, the transience, when a new set of cars and dangers, noise and victims, take our place.