Lock up your shrill, your punishing monkey minds. If you are without basement, shed or soundproof closet, give them bus fare to get as far as the coast, encourage them to wade into the deep waters and hope the rip current takes them as far south as Cabo. They may like the climate, though a slower pace could give them the heebie-jeebies. Trouble stirred with a big stick, that's their element.
Doll-maker Jane Cather writes her characters' stories on the turned hems of their skirts or aprons. I would be wise to leave myself such a memo for those times when shrieks of malice drown all knowledge of the person I believe myself to be in my most compassionate moments.
We have done nothing to bring on the frenzy of abuse our thoughts heap upon us, nothing but dwell here, beings of spirit, laboring - in theory - to find an easy home in human form. Some low-toned yet wise voice suggests that we are many; I have taken to inscribing on my garment, along with my known truth in block letters, the names of those with matching symptoms. If found wandering, please contact...
Too many miles of my journey have been spent with doubt kicking up the dust beside me. I avoid post offices in new towns, not willing to be recognized should my photo appear on poster there: Wanted for unspecified crimes. I know every unloving act I have ever committed but have grown nearly feeble trying to clear my name, to reach the cool grove of respite.
Today I would prefer to be fueled by peaceful contemplation rather than angst. In a state of acute disrepair, I am not able to cozy up to words in workable order. I can think of only one piece I wrote under the influence of sleeplessness and grief that wasn't awful; it was the letter to my cousin's husband, composed the night she died. It might have been wise to make a copy. I know he saved it, as I saved his voice mail that told me so.
We don't forget where we've been; we don't need to stay there, we are not filing dispatches from the front. Distance and a measure of stability - we can debate the illusion of that state - give us time to collect images and to soften into something not so brittle that it cracks when we attempt to mold it.