Saturday, April 7, 2018

Water, Light, Air

I'm giving you everything. You can't
know anything. She's not going to read that
Jean-Paul Sartre play, not today. To celebrate
an unremarkable birthday in her late 30s,
she went to a Theravada Buddhist monastery
in rural West Virginia to cultivate awareness
of death. "Of course I want to die, Mom."
There are hundreds of mattress reviews
declaring how "very firm" the mattress is,
but it's so soft, and what is language, anyway:
"Sometimes I lay in bed and think about
what it would be like to live on a pirate ship,"
she said. I look at a bird, probably a robin
or sparrow or dove. Imagine rage you cannot imagine
between every sentence.  What has someone
done to you and what have you done. What's missing
is the sound of the dishwasher. The headache 
that begins in your teeth. The sound of your
sweetheart breathing. Everything is missing.

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