Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Getting There

Long week so far already.  All of the Haiti aftermath.  The end of the Democratic Filibuster, whatever that even meant or accomplished.  Tracey McGrady and Allen Iverson near the top of NBA All-Star voting (no knock on A.I. - I love the guy, am fascinated by him, one of my top five favorite players of all time, but its over).  My dog has gone and it makes me remember how much I miss a dog, but how much my life right now is not suitable for one.  Soon enough.

Soon enough, too, my time at my current job will end. This is my last full week.  So I've been busy wrapping much up there.  I will get you all new, good posts very shortly.   I'm trying to think of worthwhile things to put out there for you all.  I may have to fall back on music once again and write about Gene Clark.

I'll also hopefully be doing some filming this weekend for sketches and other material so look for that.

To bring this full circle, a friend of mine works for the International Rescue Committe and if you do happen to pass this space frequently or at all, help Haiti and her organization out by texting HAITI to 25383 to donate $5 to help the IRC offer medical care, water and sanitation aid to Hatians.

That's all from me and my pedestal for now.  We're getting there - soon.

Now, the next installment of From Here to the Last Mound of Dirt.

    “I’m sorry about that guy,” Maggie says to me.

    “Mike,” I say.

    She laughs, tilting her head back so that it brushes the top of the fence rail.

    “Yes, Mike.”

    We’re sitting on the wood fence opposite the Checkmate.  The wood is sturdy.  What kind are these fences made of?  Always thick and pointed at the ends to fit into the the slits of the posts.  I look over to the historical building behind us. It’s painted green.  I think it was some kind of school house during the colonies.  What wood is it made of?  It’s all slanted and I hated having to draw it in fourth grade.

    “Why’d you want to sit out here Maggie?” I ask.

    “I thought you said you didn’t mind.”

    “No, I don’t.”

    “I just wanted to take it in, take in the night.” She turns away.  Her hair flipping almost violently.  I follow her face.  It’s dark and she looks angry. Ultimately, there is something appealing about my sister.

    “Let’s just walk home,” I say. “Check on dad.”

    “He doesn’t need any checking on.”

    She’s terse and I’m hurt.  She’s acting like a bitch and we’ve never even spent enough time in the same place together for her to treat me like that.  We’re sisters, but who knew?

    “You said…”

    “No, you’re right.” She’s still looking back.  Her hair has taken over her face so that it looks like I’m talking to this impossibly full mass.

    “Alright, so let’s go.”

    “I always loved this field..  It’s not big, but its got a few noticeable slumps, there are the thin woods and then the farm beyond.  Have you seen it in the full moon?”

    I shrugged. “I think so.”

    “The way the light seems to come up from the grass, light given off by the earth and what that looks like.”

    She’s bonding with me.  Or she’s trying to.  I think she’s going though something like I’m going through something.  Our mother is dead.  And I don’t know how it could get any more profound than that, but maybe mom being dead is only the beginning.  I don’t know.  I just started college.

    “I think I know what you mean.”

    “What about the fog? Have you seen it in the fog?”

    “I’m sure.”

    “You can see and hear George Washington’s ghost,” she says, turning back.  She’s excited now, her hair illustrates her emotions. “I walked home from my friend Jen’s house one night.  I think it was midnight and I was only fourteen.  I had one cigarette.”

    “You got away with that?”

    She nods but she’s continuing. “I was a little nervous being alone.  But when I saw the fog I felt this great comfort.  You’d think I’d be scared, but it made my heart throb in a way I hadn’t known.  I mean, you know how boys make you feel then.”

    I laugh and look down at my sneakers. “Nervous and on fire.”

    She grabs my elbow so strongly that it hurts a little. “Right, and this was different.  Seeing the grass, the fog swirling past that old house, and feeling slightly cool but warm – it was like tonight – my heart became something new to me.”

    She turns towards me, her greenish eyes drawn.  She’s not frowning I see now.  She’s just concentrated.  I think she’s expecting an answer as she’s looking.  I don’t know if I have one.  So I stay quiet.

    “Have you learned to enjoy moments like that yet?”

    That pisses me off because its like she’s speaking to a child and I’m not a  child.  I’m eighteen and I’m not a virgin.  I let Shane fuck me in his TrailBlazer.  I wanted to call it making love, but it wasn’t.  I liked his short and thick black hair. I liked the little freckles on his nose, his body.  And that we could laugh sometimes – him more than me.  But I didn’t love him.  It was something I did.  That was a moment.  There were colors, grey, blue, orange numbers from the radio, a smell of some kind of cologne.  Even words. “I’m nervous.”  “Don’t be. I won’t fuck you over.”

    “I think I’m learning.”


    We both sit silent.  Maggie has moved forward and she now stands leaning back.  Crickets are chirping and a bit of mist hovers on the grass.  Drunken stumbles and talk still come from the Checkmate.  Headlights turn on from the street and people drive away on these dark streets drunk.

    Now I want to piss my sister off.  Its not just pissing her off, I want to know something.

    “What happened to Jake?”

    She keeps her face forward and starts walking.

“Come on,” she says. “Lets go see Dad.”

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