emma b. says

Monday, June 08, 2009


How many balloons would it take to lift this house from it's foundation and just how far could I go. Far enough, or not far enough.

I saw the movie on Saturday and I thought I might have a full fledged teary-snot melt down after the first fifteen minutes, then I laughed, then I cried, then I laughed, then I cried some more.

On Sunday I woke up to the sweet-sour, overripe taste of mortality. Just like the song says, everyone you love, someday, will die. So I started doing rudimentary math, and I started to fray a little in the bed clothes, when did my mother get to be 68, how is it that a year and eight months in a new town passes with a second parade I've missed and fireworks I've only just heard. How did I and everyone I know slip a year or so, is that a lump in my breast.

Why do weeds grow so fast, when did I begin to waltz around these perilous edges, why I am still waltzing alone (hardly anyone does it anymore, anyways, not properly at least).

I play the memory game at lay me down time, I play it on the precipice of sleep, when faces and places congeal and go fluid, I skate after memory, still on steel wheels in my mother's tennis skirts, screeching on cement to AM radio. I was afraid of giants, then. That's nothing compared to mortal terror.

So escape! Cut some peonies out of your garden all perfume and safe harbor for ants! Become a flower felon like your belle soeur and clip flowers out of stranger's yards - disclosure - there is a vacant lot catty-corner and it's full of pink and yellow roses. Ride your bike with your nose to the wind, it's all going to be alright. Sit outside and drink wine with your friends until the sun sets past ten o'clock, we are North after all.

I just read this study somewhere on the internets that liars are happier (ah, no, I heard it on the radio) that the capacity for self-deception leads to an "actualized" life. Self-deception as a survival tool. Honest people recognize their foibles and imperfections are blindsided by all the unceasing ache, prolly pile it on their backs on top of their hair shirts... that sounds about right, christ, my back itches.

It's alright and it's okay, strange buds push through and thrive, I will cull the weeds. I will love the people I love, even though I am not always good about saying so, you are always there as I close my eyes, know I am skating after you, on steel wheels, faces and places, all of yesterday's parties, fluttering with my eyelids and my heartbeat in the quickening heartbeat between knowing and forgetting.

Thanks to A and J, for a long conversation about the responsibility of sons and daughters.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Mon Bicyclette

I got a bike, it got hot, things went languid all dolled up in summertime guises, I went riding. Downtown and around, sweat trickling down my spine, sun at my back, sun in my eyes, people speeding past on two wheels and in four, I was looking at the trees.

It was a gift, a good one at that. From my parents, for my birthday. I told the young man I wanted a seat that wouldn't too terribly indent my ass and was just girly and practical enough. And that, my friends, is how I became a bike commuter. A sorta indolent, slow poke, fraidy-cat, relishing the breeze, unhandsignaling (I don't know them and my hands are generally firmly affixed to the handle bars) kinda commuter.

Staked the iris, pulled weeds, learned that the best thing ever is getting high and getting handy with the trowel. The thing about gardens is that it is never ending, I am not sure I had any real clue of the actual scope before I got myself indentured to this house and that yard.

Friday, a marriage. Out at the Edgefield in some place called Troutdale, consider this, during the height of the Depression six hundred souls toiled there, it was the state poor farm, and now it's a Disneyland for the semi-drunkards, a bar every ten paces, gardens abloom. Me and my new friends, we dance, we laugh, I begin to feel forlorn at some point, I start to wish I had someone to dance with, someone to fly my freak flag with in solidarity, I waive it anyways, with decreasing trepidation, because that is what vodka will do, and soon enough it is all alright.

I chastise the groom somewhere past one in the morning for hollering beneath my window.

After breakfast we golf, my brother, his wife, with my nephew in a sling, and two nearlyweds, armed with wedges and putters in flip flops, I without my sunblock will shortly be paying for that oversight.

But I dont care and I wont care, because it is fun and it's beautiful and I need that searing, and I am ever so pleased about my flip flop tan line.

So it goes. I am still as poor as a church mouse and it's not as if I am not going to account for every penny in my head any time soon, but the softening of the season seems to make it just that much more palatable, which isn't to say that I didn't cry in my car on the way home after the wedding.

And now this, one of my (much) younger colleagues has set a tennis date, I fear his emphasis is on date. Oh dear.