Things I Loved as a Child

Water dripping from a gutter; puddles in the street; window panes; squeaky old wheels; the ocean; sleeping bags; cold wind that chapped my face; the stillness of museums when they first open in the mornings; apples; thick books; globes; the color of the sky after rain; the flickering glow of candles; embroidery hoops; Nancy Drew books; dusty chalkboards; the beam of light through a window; places that echo; wooden crates; tree stumps; fish tanks; bookshelves; ribbons; the Lawrence Welk show; the quilt my Oma made me; and my Opa’s soft voice when he used to read to me.

Sunday Evenings

“I’m so tired,” I said, staring up at the ceiling.

“Me too.” he sighed. We laid sprawled out on his living room floor, our homework in disarray around us.

His house always smelled of ginger and old books and peppermint. We always did our homework together in his living room Sunday evenings. Ever since we were little, when my mom used to drop me off and we’d sit on the carpeted floor with our books. When finished our homework, we would help him mom cook dinner in the kitchen. We were usually more of a mess for her to clean up than any help.

“You know what makes me happy?”

“What?” he asked, turning over onto his stomach to look at me.

“Irish folk music.” I giggled and put a hand over my face. Isaiah started at me with his dark brown eyes, confused for a second until is lips parted and a heartfelt laugh escaped them. He rested his cheek on the floor and smiled.

“You are such a dork.” he said. “especially when you’re this tired.”

“I know!” I laughed.

The Most Beautiful Words I’ve Ever Heard

B (If I Should Have a Daughter)  by Sarah Kay 

 

Instead of “Mom”, she’s gonna call me “Point B.” Because that way, she knows that no matter what happens, at least she can always find her way to me. And I’m going to paint the solar system on the back of her hands so that she has to learn the entire universe before she can say “Oh, I know that like the back of my hand.”

She’s gonna learn that this life will hit you, hard, in the face, wait for you to get back up so it can kick you in the stomach. But getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way to remind your lungs how much they like the taste of air. There is hurt, here, that cannot be fixed by band-aids or poetry, so the first time she realizes that Wonder-woman isn’t coming, I’ll make sure she knows she doesn’t have to wear the cape all by herself. Because no matter how wide you stretch your fingers, your hands will always be too small to catch all the pain you want to heal. Believe me, I’ve tried.

And “Baby,” I’ll tell her “don’t keep your nose up in the air like that, I know that trick, you’re just smelling for smoke so you can follow the trail back to a burning house so you can find the boy who lost everything in the fire to see if you can save him. Or else, find the boy who lit the fire in the first place to see if you can change him.”

But I know that she will anyway, so instead I’ll always keep an extra supply of chocolate and rain boats nearby, ‘cause there is no heartbreak that chocolate can’t fix. Okay, there’s a few heartbreaks chocolate can’t fix. But that’s what the rain boots are for, because rain will wash away everything if you let it.

I want her to see the world through the underside of a glass bottom boat, to look through a magnifying glass at the galaxies that exist on the pinpoint of a human mind. Because that’s how my mom taught me. That there’ll be days like this, “There’ll be days like this my momma said” when you open your hands to catch and wind up with only blisters and bruises. When you step out of the phone booth and try to fly and the very people you wanna save are the ones standing on your cape. When your boots will fill with rain and you’ll be up to your knees in disappointment and those are the very days you have all the more reason to say “thank you,” ‘cause there is nothing more beautiful than the way the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline no matter how many times it’s sent away.

You will put the “wind” in winsome, lose some, you will put the “star” in starting over and over, and no matter how many land mines erupt in a minute be sure your mind lands on the beauty of this funny place called life.

And yes, on a scale from one to over-trusting I am pretty damn naive but I want her to know that this world is made out of sugar. It can crumble so easily but don’t be afraid to stick your tongue out and taste it.

“Baby,” I’ll tell her “remember your mama is a worrier but your papa is a warrior and you are the girl with small hands and big eyes who never stops asking for more.”

Remember that good things come in threes and so do bad things and always apologize when you’ve done something wrong but don’t you ever apologize for the way your eyes refuse to stop shining.

Your voice is small but don’t ever stop singing and when they finally hand you heartbreak, slip hatred and war under your doorstep and hand you hand-outs on street corners of cynicism and defeat, you tell them that they really ought to meet your mother.

 

Rain in August

It was pouring all day. Everything was inky gray, as if water colors had spilled all across the clouds. Even though it was August there wasn’t a patch of sunlight peaking through the thick damp sky. Clear, cold water an inch deep ran down the sides of the road. My feet were soaked as well as my hair. Every inch of my skin was cold and wet. It was wonderful.

 

 

Sonder

I find a comforting beauty in the bustle of a city. Immersing myself in the pulse of the streets, I become a brief portion of a stranger’s day. I like to gaze through the windows of coffee shops and watch the quiet movements of the people sitting behind them, inventing my own scheme of what their lives must be like. A small young woman, an aspiring artist, sits in the corner. Her gaze is lost somewhere only she can see.

My own thoughts trail. I imagine what these streets must have looked like fifty years ago – if they were as busy and filled with life. I wonder what must have occupied these old buildings before they were refilled with new people and new things and what they must have been like brand new. There was a time where people came here and saw their future.

Je ne sais pas pourquoi, le troisième

Je ne sais pas pourquoi, mais j’adore…

I do not know why, but I love..

Black and white prints; old hard covered novels; strawberries; clawfoot bathtubs; nicknames; rope bridges; brown paper bags; freckles; large Russian carpets; ripples; baby’s breath flowers; windows; ballet; the word “ribbons”; oil paintings; teacups; kaleidoscopes; watercolors; pianos; sand dunes; the sound of a train; the sound a typewriter makes; crates of fruit; jars; and so much more.