Friday, August 31, 2007
Let the days fall
Rake the heartbeat,
ancient whirr inside the womb.
Autumn in the nursery,
transposing every bone.
A picture turned up this week in an old backpack, our house, circa '87, before Tom and Jojo, before the flower beds, before the mass of trees. It must have been late September, maybe October, because that maple tree that fell over one day in the storm is still standing with a crown of yellow leaves. There is no dogwood, no row of blue spruce, no 40-foot tulip trees, no volunteer cedar or catalpa. It seems like I've been standing still for a long time, but apparently that is not exactly true. Or maybe it is exactly true and trees are what happen when you don't move.
Regardless, the Monday morning epiphanies keep resounding. Something like, yes, yes, the trees are beautiful, but the party's moved, or some old cliche like that. Anyway, the long and the short of it is, I'm thinking about giving up my beloved freedom, the proofreading, and going out into the world and getting a job. On Monday the urge felt quite a bit stronger than "I am thinking about," but it is good to let passions cool before acting rashly. It's Friday now. I can slowly think things through, thoughts like, You're going to have a Bachelor of Arts in English. What job? Well, that is a problem, and no, I don't have anything in particular in mind. David suggested as an alternative I might take up drinking, but I am so bad at it that I am sure to fail and I hate to go into anything that I don't have a chance of success at. I'm going to keep it in mind as a backup plan, though, just in case I can't find a position that suits.
So that's how the trees stand this week, a slight ripple in the leaves.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
You're a Rabbit!
Sure-footed and exceptional at hearing, you have a great number of
physical talents. While you do love carrots, you have an aversion to lettuce that
no one seems to really believe. Looney Tunes have been your favorite cartoons for
as long as you can remember. Though you'd never admit it, you've always wondered
what it would feel like to be thrown into a briar patch. You really like, er,
procreating, even more than most people.
Take the Animal Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.
Somehow, this all seemed a little inevitable. And yes, I have actually read Watership Down, many eons ago. It probably entered my DNA when I was a teenager and is still working its way out.
You're Watership Down!
by Richard Adams
Though many think of you as a bit young, even childish, you're
actually incredibly deep and complex. You show people the need to rethink their
assumptions, and confront them on everything from how they think to where they
build their houses. You might be one of the greatest people of all time. You'd
be recognized as such if you weren't always talking about talking rabbits.
Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.
Monday, August 27, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Okay, yes, I did have to take off my shoes and wade through some mud. Squish, squish, squish, slippery creek mud around my ankles, in between my toes. Perhaps there will be a great disaster in the next few days, say a meteor, something spectacular, a quick death, not like the relatively slow effects of global warming, and my footprints will become fossilized and thousands of years from now someone will discover them and say, "Look, footprints, along this ancient creek bed. This unfortunate woman was probably fleeing from the great disaster, the meteor of 2007, (except they won't call it that) but it overtook her. Isn't it wonderful that we have her footprints here immortalized in the mud to forever mark her passing! Poor thing." Young children will come to look and study the distance between each of my toes and the length of my stride. They'll test the mud to see if there are any traces of foot fungus. They'll probably mark the place where I almost lost my balance and left long skid marks. They will argue about whether or not I was a lousy walker, unbalanced to begin with, or whether the mud in this particular place was just so slippery I was bound to slide. Oh, I imagine they're going to have fun with me, let me tell you. But they probably won't be able to tell I was headed for the duck weed pond and its green serenity. They certainly won't know that all the duck weed was missing, swept down the creek in the rain.
Friday, August 24, 2007
Monday, August 20, 2007
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
My diligence has been rewarded. I have now received my assignment of wedding duties. I am the assistant dog handler. Jojo is the chief dog handler. We are in charge of dressing the dogs and bringing them to the reception and keeping them watered. I did tell my friend, the bride's mother, Whatever you need, tell me... Good thing that dress was on sale. I wonder how it looks with dog hair. Is this one of those things you can put on a resume or one of those things you deny ever happened?
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Even my hero Darwin got sucked up into the marriage thing. But he, being the detail-oriented sort, made a list of the pros and cons. On the plus side he was interested in a companion, and wrote that he considered a wife better than a dog. He thought that constant work would make him like a neuter bee. He wanted to be beloved and played with. He wanted a couple of kids. Well, okay. On the minus side he listed the loss of his freedom, being forced to visit relatives, having less money for books (gasp), and if he had too many children, being forced to work hard, which he found really not healthy at all. He was also very concerned about the terrible loss of time that would result from having a wife. In the end he married, though. He kept imagining his dirty, smoky house in London and thinking it just wouldn’t do. He had to juggle a very religious wife with his increasingly nonreligious views, but nonetheless he needed her. Jeez. I don’t think it can get much more complicated.
So, I guess Marie is going to get married and I might as well be happy about it. I’m still not sure what I’m going to wear. The wedding is outside, with canoeing and volley ball in between the ceremony and the reception, so maybe if I got one of those body shaper things to go under a dress it could double for a swimming suit and something to keep me tied down for volley ball. Of course, that means I should buy a dress. I have a feeling I’m going to be out dressed by the family’s two dogs, who will be attending, dressed in a tux and a wedding gown. I understand that Marie is wearing Crocs under her wedding gown. I’ll have the complete report on Monday. Maybe my writer’s block will come to an end.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Thursday, August 09, 2007
Of course I couldn't stay sealed up at home. Are you crazy?! The Koi needed duck weed and the air conditioning was just a tad too cool.
This guy loves to sit in the mud puddle in front of the duck weed pond. He's probably a descendent of that turtle that hung out in the giant mud puddle in front of my grandparents' house, the one I was sure was going to bite off all my toes. He's not as big as I remember his relatives, though.
Wednesday, August 08, 2007
Jim Harrison The Beast God Forgot to Invent
Yes, it’s hot, and yes, I’m holed up working in my little room. Thank God for unrelenting work. The cinderblock house is on shutdown, sealed tight, two room air conditioners and one dehumidifier sucking electricity out of the power grid. The sole purpose of August in Indiana is to make us pray for January. January works the same way, but in the opposite direction. I want to hear the crickets screaming through the night, but something has to give.
Monday, August 06, 2007
They were moving to different states.
No job, no plan.
Your job is your livelihood. That’s how you live.
The house was cold. I remember it being very, very cold.
Like you could see your breath cold.
It struck me as odd.
Maybe he kept it cold so the smells didn’t permeate the house.
He assured me he did maintain the rugs.
I was in all the livable rooms of the house.
The rugs were clean and it’s cold in there.
There were dogs and a rabbit.
I was never in the attic.
There were stains on the ceiling of the master bedroom.
There were comments about the noises and the smells.
There was a screen missing.
My kids were like, this house is strange.
I heard scratching.
It was loudest at the upstairs window.
We heard some things, like light, light noises, but I didn’t put a name to it until the scratching episode became loud.
There was a string and I pulled it, but no light came on.
It’s the kind of smell that goes from your nose to your stomach. Did you ever smell something like that?
I was in nose reach of this smell.
We cut down the tree.
It was a hot summer.
We stayed in that vacated state a long time.
Friday, August 03, 2007
Thursday, August 02, 2007
The rest of the trip:
It is 651 miles from our house in Indiana to Mohawk, MI, unless you let teenagers drive and they miss the sign for 131 and take a bypass to Muskegon. Then it is something like 690-something.
It is not a good idea to try to make the trip on one tank of gas, and the person driving, even if they are a teenager, should have the responsibility of making sure the gas light doesn't come on in the middle of nowhere.
There are a million ways to play the alphabet game, but I don't care, there is still not a "D" in school bus and cheating is low, very low.
Jojo drove across Big Mac and we didn't die. We didn't even say, "I will never, ever ride with you again when you drive across Big Mac" like we did when Tom drove across speeding the whole way when he was 16.
Okay. That's it. We're here, safe and sound. At first glance the Keweenaw is very dry and the signs say the fire danger is extreme. But otherwise, ahhhhh.