Second Floor Window
People have always asked me
if I live alone? I think I must seem like
a pack animal. The urge to
gather warmth around me so obvious
to others but I remain oblivious.
From my own personal observation
my happiest times
are when I am alone reflecting
on the canopy of a tree, or
a glimmer of ocean from a second floor
window as the rare is infinitely more
than the commonplace.
Here in summer, many prefer the full on
blast of ocean houses carrying past their
boatloads of revelry or roars of lionlike
testosterone gargling along from the
Maserati’s of speed boats.
I have always
preferred the second or
third row of houses far enough from the
ocean to avoid the damaging sea spray and
near enough to catch a glimpse of shiny
out the second floor corner window while
standing on a low stool.
Last night no one knew if it was
the sun setting or the moon rising
but it was orange: hung there by a
wire moving around our sky, currents
of warm air lifting and lowering its round
shape enough to light the narrow, soft roads
crisscrossing the sandy summer peninsula.
One young woman pushing her
old cruiser bike silently, leaving Book Club late after
a chat about amphibians, taking the
long way home, blond hair falling in a
triangle down her back, white Keds glistening,
she thinks of fall when everyone will be gone
and suddenly there in the mist she becomes
invisable except for the sound of one repentant
bicycle spoke grinding it’s rhythm until she’s home.
I like young old men.
Men whose twinkle never faded like some
lust or the memory of really good vanilla ice
cream. I like the round muscle of their arms,
the temptation of golden skin,
and the quick way they look at me for
what seems like a long time while we are
kissing. Each time I open my eyes there
is that gaze, eyes so clear and full of intent.
I don’t know what to do with that gaze.
It never varies. I’m so unused to direct
and constant I’m checking it, closing my
eyes and then quickly opening them again
like a child thinking it will be gone. The kiss
goes on and on like undulating waves in
a warm climate with hopeful palm trees
that clap their fronds for any passion seen
I think it’s over but something like
one finger on my cheekbone
begins the spiral again.
It would not be sensible to want this
on a regular basis but everyone does.
Desire and to be desired.
We all wait.
A remembered afternoon in summer.
It is dark nearly all of the time.
People have forgotten the feel of water.
Lifetimes have shortened
Partners are assigned
The dictionary has been revised.
So many words no longer exist,
Joy, Hope, Heart ,Listen, Compassion,
Friendship, Cookie, Sunshine, Language
The past disappeared so rapidly that
Forgot to transcribe itself.
There are no more Buddhists.
For the longest time I thought I might become
I could be Norwegian and learn the language well so people would say how
no one could tell I wasn’t a native.
My hair would miraculously turn blond.
It would be ok to like sex.
I like the sounds of their desserts.
Or I could be a lawyer in Manhattan wearing crispy tight suits in black with very high heels and click click click across the court room floor stating my case with brilliant red lips and always winning.
Rootless like a malformed carrot I
refuse to flourish in one place.
I know this is a problem this rootlessness.
It’s prevented me from
applying myself to much of anything: love, housekeeping, friendship, home repair… you get the story. I kept a suitcase filled with cash hidden in my house and a bag packed with essentials which changed from month to month.
Now my rootlessness fits right in. No one is going anywhere but everyone would like to be rootless.
Where will I go when I can go anywhere?
Hawaii because I can’t get the music of palm trees out of my head.
Like Eloise, I could move into the Four Seasons hotel on the Big Island and go down to dinner every night sitting at the bar overlooking the lapping ocean generously tipping the bartender so that he always saved my seat.
And oh yes there is the spa with palm leaves that rattle above your hut while you are having a massage. Preferably a Lomi Lomi massage and I don’t know what that is.
I have entertained myself all day thinking of places I would like to go when I can go anywhere. Frankly, it may be better in my imagination. That’s been a life long problem of mine.
I am the last woman on earth.
I live alone in my house and every day I do the Schedule:
yoga, coffee, meditation, breakfast, look out the window, laundry,
make the bed,
take a shower, take a walk, lie on the floor, wait for the dogs to
jump on me, eat stuff from the fridge,
gaze into it awhile. Brush my hair.
Add blush. Add mascara after thinking about how long it will take
to remove later.
Yesterday I considered a small glass of red wine with breakfast.
I can’t remember the day.
My neighbor’s new dog barks
enough to make napping problematic.
I drink a lot of tea with half and half and maple syrup which is
tastier than sugar.
After 6 my garage is a café for friends
and dinner comes in white cardboard boxes. We slip food under
our masks like horses with feed buckets or dogs with muzzles.
We are dreamers who believe
next month will bring hope back and neighbors come
two by two
like passengers on Noah’s Ark
run aground and have a hard time leaving.
I’m glad for the distraction and for the wine and anesthesia.
I don’t tell anyone about the hopelessness.