Tuesday, June 15, 2010

In absentia

I've been absent from this blog for 10 days now. Too busy to string together two thoughts, let alone words. (Not too busy to eat nearly an entire bag of medium-sized M&Ms, though.)

Once I am beyond the birth of our research at work and statewide tour, I will be back, right here, to write, write, write. In July, maybe sooner.

Maybe I'll write from the road. Document what I see and hear. Hmmm...

Road stories. Yes. Stay tuned.

In the meantime...

Peace to you all. xoxo

Friday, June 4, 2010


by Mary Oliver

You are young. So you know everything. You leap into the boat and begin rowing.
But listen to me.

Life without fanfare, without embarrassment, without any doubt, I talk directly to your soul. Listen to me.

Lift the oars from the water, let your arms rest, and your heart, and heart's little intelligence, and listen to me.

It is not worth a bent penny or a scuffed shoe. It is not worth the body of a dead dog nine days unburied.

When you hear, a mile away and still out of sight, the churn of the water as it begins to swirl and roil, fretting around the sharp rocks -- when you hear that unmistakable pounding -- when you feel the mist on your mouth and sense ahead the embattlement, the long falls plunging and steaming -- then row, row for your life toward it.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


I was chiseling near-petrified matter from a skillet the other night, mentally bitching about cat hair on the counter and in my eye. I was doing what I often do in these moments of pet-owner outrage: plot out my revenge against her (Winnie, cat) and imagine the feel of squirt bottle in hand, finger on trigger, locked and loaded. (I do this, true story.)

Noises all around. GLEE on the kitchen tube -- (warning: unintentional rhyming ahead) -- Atmosphere rapping in the living room... my next-door neighborhood hacking up a loogie and ejecting it somewhere (sorry, it happens).

Life in the city ain't always sex-in-the-city pretty, my friend. (Whaddaya gonna do?)

Somehow, cutting through and above this cacophony of sound, I hear: CLICK......CLICK...

I can't immediately identify the source of the sounds, so I do what any 47.5 year old girl raised on Nancy Drew would do: I investigate.

Crouching low to the ground, I creep cautiously toward a lime-green canvas-covered folding chair propped unsteadily in a corner (I really did this). In its semi-folded state, I theorize that the CLICK......CLICK's may simply be the result of it incrementally unfolding due to the gravitational pull of the Earth's core. (I thought I was so sci-smart, I really did.)


Clearly, wrong. My investigation continues. I snap my head approx. 45 degrees to redirect my focus, and this time, I find it. "It" plural.

CLICK......CLICK... These were the sounds of a single insect putting every ounce of its waning energy into a futile series of exoskeleton-contorting SOS's.

It's un-doer, a perfectly round-bellied spider, was deftly spinning the bug around and around, weaving its filament-of-death tighter and tighter with every rotation.

CLICK......CLICK... Help!
CLICK......CLICK... I've been captured!
CLICK......CLICK... Losing all circulation, can't move....
CLICK......CLICK... Fucking spider. (final words)


I watched all of this with a slack-jawed horror. I was mesmerized, even slightly terrorized. Since, I've wondered and worried when this will show up in a future nightmare -- me, the bug, spun.