Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I try to picture what we would grow, broken down into our components and scattered in furrows on a soft dusty field, if our hair would grow flowers and our fingertips corn, if our hearts would sprout volcanoes and tropical fish and asteroids. Given that our molecules are all from elephants and Einstein and remote control cars, anyway.

Last night I was learning more things about under the water--no matter how many documentaries they make about it, under the water always comes up with something new--and they were talking about a kind of spider crab that walks and walks to join zillions of other crabs in breaking out of their skins every year. It seems like the best way to grow, all at once and surrounded by others, and the camera whirled around, briefly catching sight of one small crab hitching a ride on the back of a large one. I am sure that, although the story of the gathering was interesting, the story of those two crabs is probably even better.

Monday, February 14, 2011

It seems like we are losing people faster than we are gaining them around here, all of this death unexpected even when it's anticipated and prepared for. One more person we knew and now don't know any longer. In the late nights we recite our blessings like prayers, reminding ourselves that lost is only gone once we've stopped remembering. Making plans for planting flowers and then letting go, one more time.

They found a whaling ship, last week, lost for the last 188 years under the waves near Honolulu, except that there was no ship. The warm water has softly washed away all of the wood, every bone of the vessel. What was left was a suggestion of the ship, a harpoon and some accessories, an outline of what had been lost. Most of what was found has already been swallowed by the coral reef. Likely many things that haven't been found have also already been taken by the water and the animals and time. Two other ships had gone down in the same place in later years, and it was only the collected debris that identified this spot as that ship's resting place.

Of all the places to be lost for almost 200 years, those warm waters are probably not the worst.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

For a long time my grandma worked in a real estate, and she would sometimes take me with her to the houses. There was one that was old and creaky and maybe sinking, definitely empty of people and full of dust. In the dining room sat a tall cabinet full of pairs of salt and pepper shakers.

I remember a set shaped like wooden shoes, and another like a man and a woman. Dozens of sets, all lined up on the shelves, looking out into a dim room that only rustled slightly from visiting roaches. For years I thought about those salt and pepper shakers all the time, wondering who had gathered them and why they had been left behind to stand sentinel in that quiet place.

I wondered about what happened to them all the time, but of course she didn't know. In my head they're still there, inside that old house slowly being reclaimed by saw palmetto and moss, their little ceramic eyes keeping watch through the dusty glass.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

When we finished with the trapeze class (I'm going to keep referring to that until it is no longer the scariest thing I have ever done, which I guess means I need to take up something like skydiving, alligator wrestling, or falling in love) they suggested that we try aerial silks next, since you start on those pretty close to the ground. We gave it the first shot yesterday, trying out all of the other circus contraptions, and the main lesson I took away from the whole experience is that while I have not even the slightest desire to be an athlete or the sort of person who does yoga or whatever, it probably wouldn't hurt me to be a little more flexible and a little stronger. If only to cut down on the amount of time I spend mewling in pain after these sorts of experiences. It's easy to fool people about how out of shape I am because I am little, although on the other hand it is a lot easier to get other people to do things for me this way.

Anyway, next month I'm going to shoot an AK47, provided I can lift it. I'm not very fond of guns, but I haven't ever shot one before, so I figure I might as well try it out once.