Saturday, October 30, 2010

post 30 october

The more things that happen, the more there is to tell you about. The more delayed the posting, the more things that happen.

Certainly, though, these happenings are more of a combination of minutes than major Events Of Importance. To that end, here are a few of the minutes from the last week or so. :)

I didn’t go looking for light, but it found me suddenly, striking down right bright angles in the yellow leaves of white birches lining the long road out of town. Eyes drawn to the right, seeking the source, the sun, unstrung and shaking itself out in the cold, clear air—almost missing the boy on the other side of the street. He’s slowgoing three or four steps, back from school in a lookingnice coat and tooclean clothes for those toodirty shoes. Up the alley, before he turns in, two little low dogs hurry up to confront, sharp barks: the race is on. Down he turns, into the dust, all three chasing each other from every angle, haphazard from habit and escape.

Halfway between my waist and the sky, my red vinyl bowlingstyle bag perches on the seatback just in front of me. Twenty minutes in and I’m still standing, still pressed in between smells and bodies: cologne, onions, humanity. The woman sitting in front of me is chattering incessantly to her friend, neither of them pausing to listen to the other, but nodding emphatically to show their bonded support. Music from a different world suggests an indie rock escape straight from recharged energizers to my ears on thin green cords, but my eyes know differently. My eyes catch the bumpy landscape through thin, gold-scalloped curtains topping the dustdressed windows, all distressed but cared for. I am awkward and I do not belong and I am in the space belonging to others.

Minutes ago while K was talking I looked past her through the window across the courtyard on the roof of the building opposite and there was a giant flare a torch and I said look at that and she said what.

Now she is still talking and I am listening but what I am seeing is a bright white light. I am hearing about love and distance and I am feeling understanding. Now I know why the flare was lit; now I see why such a flame was needed. Perfectly angled in the same spot, the same plot develops with a twist, lifting up from the earth now as a wide white circle. Flamed from within, lifting on heat, the moon starts its easy climb into the obvious sky, full and patient.

Sudden upclose quiet following something else dropped, rolling with a forward lean from a coat-padded lap. Sidebeside friends glance and shake their heads with undecided laughs on their quiet-in-the-audience lips. Embarassment flushing the dark, wondering what and where to. Behind, loudbreathing rows of underage camouflage feign interest in a slow scene onstage, waiting for more action from the seductive Carmen and her feisty friends to spice things up a little. Lean back into the velvet insulation of a first-row balcony seat, carefully fingerchecking the secondhand purse that could have done better.

Waking up on top of the covers, face down, curtain open. There is an order, and this is not it. Foggy seconds recall nothing. Light streams in gray and weak, probing a sidetwisted neck and a crackback groan. Whiteframed window, tapesealed against cold and night. Left fingers clean lefteye corners, deep yawn presses chest to mattress, inflates memory. An hour has passed. Butter now soft on the kitchen radiator. Time to turn the oven on.

This is not the lesson plan. This is something else. This could be learning. Five out of ten are in class. Five out of ten are whispering, a group of two and a group of three. They are too quiet to offer up a clue of language. I have given five minutes. This one is too long. I sit. Take attendance. Offer space, control. Soon I will walk, check their work. They take turns glancing up at me. I look up and down, breathe in patience and optimism. Soon we’ll be able to tell. Who understands?