Friday, November 14, 2008

An Open Letter of Warning for My Beloved

Love keeps a detailed record of being wronged, because love loves making lists and always being correct, spot-on and in the right. Love is irritable after long drives alone, when love likes to get into her own head and stew on the immeasurable universe of being alive. Love occasionally rejoices at injustices – little ones of course, like when the kid she didn’t like much got yelled at by the third grade teacher even though he wasn’t chewing paper. I think you already know that love is NOT patient. Love can’t wait for you to come home even as she watches your heel lift off the last step, love wakes up at 6 a.m. and expects you to have a long conversation about her strange dreams, love nicks mushrooms as you are cooking them. Love will give up if she’s dehydrated and overheated. Keep her temperature level, please. Love is kind and also bitter, love likes to boast about her waist size, her score at Scrabble, and her ability to guess who is going to call the house next. Love is rude for writing this, and demanding for making you read it, and because it is getting late into the night and love has an early bedtime, love is now irritable. Love just wants to wake up early and tell you everything she saw in her dreams.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Shoeboxes Under My Bed

I've been on some kind of weird organizational wave lately. First it was the kitchen pantry, then the studio closets. Last week I tore down the curtains that hid all the old craft items in the guestroom and cleaned off those shelves to make way for books. Yesterday I really tucked into that project, and one cleaned area opened up an entire other cluttered area - shelves led to closet, closet led to under the bed, under the bed pointed to the bedroom, bedroom cried out living room. What better time to sit in the middle of the guest room floor and sift through a thick strata of old photographs, cat-chewed artwork, notes from second grade, and computer parts? I mean, my wedding is only two weeks away.

I have always had odd timing when it comes to projects like these. If it's 90 degrees outside, I get a wild weed to rip up all the carpeting in the hallway and paint the floor. Wedding soon? Major events to host in the studio coming up? Phoo. Rearrange the furniture, fill up trashbags and reorganize all your books according to the Dewey Decimal system.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Man With an Infallible Memory

No, I don't remember the walls of the womb that carried me. But the cut of her hair, the way it looks like rainy pavement today, and how in 1978 it was autumn birch leaves - I remember that. On February 20th, the kitchen floor had a sticky spot near the refrigerator. My wool sock picked it up through its fibers and played tacky tacky all day as I walked. The scent of vanilla on Wednesday, May 6th 1984. I sat behind a girl wearing a red t-shirt. She drew spirals and cubes in the margins of her notebook and chewed on the end of her pencil. When she turned around to ask me for my notes, she half-smiled in a way that made her look like a sagging jack-o-lantern. I told her I don't take notes. The room was humid and the teacher's chalk squealed on the board. September 17th, 1998. I remember what you said, the timbre of your voice, tilt of your hip. The door sealed shut with a fwip, didn't slam like in all the novels. It was autumn so many times, spring, summer, winter's empty page for everyone else, but I remember everything.