A chickadee nests under the inside eave of the porch, which of course gentles the way I open and close my front door. I hope to make friends with this family so that the anxiousness at comings and goings subsides for all concerned. In any case, a new series of daily negotiations has begun. I consider the exclusive use of my back door.
Flowers bloom trembling, huddled close to the April ground in the yard, in the garden that is choked with goutweed. The garden that is soon to be dug out with great effort, lined with old carpet, and replenished with new soil, sans goutweed root. The roses, delphiniums, peonies, holly, coneflower, clematis and rose of sharon will all be temporarily potted – bewildered, no doubt, to be sitting in my driveway. More gentle negotiations.
Mice in my kitchen – alarmingly unafraid of me – all of whom I will need to kill (not gentle). A cupboard door has come off it’s old hinges, the de-humidifiers now need daily emptying, storm windows will trade places with front porch chairs. All of this is comforting, in between the soul-searching and the interminable litigious trials that all leave me feeling quite fragile. I have the day off from school.
I read, I putter, I sleep, wake, read, write…
a 21-line prayer poem, 7 from a child, 7 a young woman, 7 an elder one. each will be sewn onto an embroidered, hand-printed windhorse prayer flag. Reds and oranges. Yellows and greens. Blues and purples.
I glue swarovsky crystals onto hand-made square nails, then bind those onto stretched batik fabric with coloured thread. I sew my wedding ring there too – pulled by red threads from all directions. I realize I want to sew it into almost-invisibility. Add a piece of my old sloppy shirt, stone beads, glass beads to form the shape of a hand out of fairy tale. Red, blue, yellow and green at the tip of each sparkling finger.
The under-narrative of women’s work runs deep. I think of this as I find myself counting each stitch aloud.
It will all take longer
delays upon delays
upon denial upon fear
upon betrayals that mutter their toxic deep
deep deep in old wounds.
I do not think it’s about me any more.
Was it ever.
It’s about the planets turning
the seasons, the wheel, the fool, who,
blithely unaware of his purpose,
strolls smiling the ever-moment.
Likely a chronic pot-smoker, that fool.
August 18, 2016/April 19, 2017