Telling: Streams & Logs


moon in gemini, sliding toward cancer

I am a woman, 55 years old, the skin of my legs gone smooth of its own accord, ankles pocked with mosquito kisses, livid still after 7 days but no longer burning, a shaved-head woman sitting awake in the dark, its cradling solitude, the feast of it, this house of breathing. The speed of my days compacts me, each stranger's face a call to answer, re-form in response. The magnets of obligation and motion scatter my wiffle dust. I never taught my children about wiffle dust like my father taught me, hunkered down in the sand under the apple tree, probing and extracting the dark whiskers from the pale ground. His magic was his magic, not mine. I don't know where it's gone to now, that magic. I didn't find it in any of the drawers or boxes he left behind, though I kept every penny and pebble hoping that things might somehow add up. Why is it that whenever he approaches me now I feel compelled to mention that he is dead? Something about that is like trying to catch lightning bugs in a jar. The trap and the spark. Hello - you're dead now. Stay. So, I am awake now, as my father often was, in the still hours. It's almost our birthday again. He's dead. I'm eating cereal from a white ceramic bowl in the dark. There's nowhere else I'd rather be. The tides shift and all the twining strands begin to rise.