Donald looks at the Rose Garden and Donald is the Big Man, Donald is the President. This is the garden of even enough attention for Donald––he could stay here forever, he thinks. He’s looking at the Rose Garden but he’s seeing Scott and Steve, breathing from their praise and exhaling, relieved. He lets all their best words play back against the inside of his skull––we’ll withdraw and we’ll lead and it’s America First, Donald at the Top. And okay he doesn’t see Scott and Steve, but it’s their words he’s allowed to wrap over and around the thoughts in his head this time. The thoughts that are otherwise unbearable and his own, they cannot be one without the other. He doesn’t see Scott and Steve like he doesn’t really see the crowd or remember the ticker tapes predicting his words all day, the CNN countdown to the 3pm Address. Rather, it’s all allowing him to better see himself. The sun warms his bleached-blonde hair and he's so handsome, he thinks. So whole.
And so he says it: “we’ll withdraw” and he leans on the aww, savors the slide of Donald’s voice against Donald’s teeth and tongue. Thank you to the audience and the few fleeting cheers because they bring Donald into sharper focus for himself, he looks tremendous saving the world this afternoon. An easy enough task because it is in fact only the Rose Garden, that world. For Donald it’s Scott, Steve, the cheers, the Donald, and the garden––that’s all the existence he can imagine. 7500 square feet of perfect climate consistency. Nobody knows the climate better than Donald. He grins and he smirks, promises a better deal and all is right with this world without Paris.
Time, however, is the only flaming sword separating Donald’s Garden from the thorns and thistles of Angela and her friends. Because it never lasts long for Donald, that feeling of wholeness and composure. No, it slips away like he imagines jobs might do should we disagree with our dear friends in Syria and Nicaragua. Drains out like something leaving a hollow shell. And then it’s like nothing exists at all. Not the bright English Boxwoods of the White House Rose Garden. Not the nation of winners and losers, crooks and liars and three million cases of voter fraud. Not any sustainable sense of self. Because without Scott and Steve, what is he? Because nobody knows fear and self-doubt and self-loathing like Donald.