Tuesday, August 9, 2011

the one where half of my books arrive

Finally, UPS showed up with four of the seven books I ordered. Two of the books are "just because I want them" (and I had gift cards): Elizabeth Bishop and Belle Waring. Tomorrow I should get those two and Charles Wright. This evening, I have Merwin, Ashberry, Bang and Graham.

Mary Jo Bang came in her own separate box. I'd been stalking her online much of today. Wasn't sure I'd like her, thought maybe I was too stupid to get her.

I may be too stupid, but oh honey! What the girl can do with a phrase or three! I am smitten and broken hearted for what she experienced, how she wrote it, my fear of what I could experience if the world chooses to ...

no. I can't say it out loud.

I am doing mundane things while I think about these books of poetry that are my textbooks for next semester. I wash my girl's bras in the sink, dip into my bedroom to fold that wad of clean laundry I crammed into the basket Saturday when I got back home from the residency. I made a run to the much-loathed Walmart while the Girl was at a film (the planet of the apes remake) for a razor and shampoo for her. She is now ... somewhere? Up at the playground with friends? She is nearby. I can feel her.

This week is hard on her. The band director works the kids hard this week after band camp. (She tells me he is begging me to work a waffle wagon shift with him since he is the only adult staff that day. I don't usually work waffle wagon (we sell waffles as a major fund raiser for the marching band), though I sometimes help mix up the batter, but I find it hard to say "no" to Mr. R.)

I napped late this afternoon, cat pressed against my leg purring so hard I felt like I was riding around in the bed of that pick up truck I remember from a visit we made to my sister who was in college at UT when I was 12 or 13, just before we left for Daddy's Germany "tour." I don't remember if I rode in the bed for a little bit. What I do remember is late that night being crammed (like the clean laundry) into the truck's front bench seat, on my sister's lap, crushed next to her boyfriend (now husband) and some other college boy. I slept on her dorm room floor during the visit, didn't I? Didn't I, Michele? Do you remember that? You were so beautiful. I remember a hilarious conversation about bust size, yours and your roommate's, not mine since I had no bust to speak of when I was 12 and 13 (still don't).

I miss the dust the truck raised on those back roads toward wherever we were going. Somewhere just outside of Austin? I don't remember the specifics. I remember feeling sleepy, feeling like a younger child than I was, feeling lucky that you let me hang out with you, that Mommy and Daddy trusted you with me.

Somewhere in these paragraphs is the first line of that 10-line poem I should have started yesterday. I'll uncover it later, late, later, deep night, dark, dark.

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