I have never been a good swimmer. I took lessons from a woman named Beverly, who had a pool in her backyard, and for years I would jump in and tread water, never committing to the strokes. I could stay afloat and move toward the edge, but I didn't(more) want to traverse the length of the pool. I wanted to do a cork float, pull my knees to my chest and look around under the water, see the tiny bubbles on my leg hairs, then sputter up for air and do it again.
When I was a child, I was very skinny. My knees were the fattest part of my legs, and my ribs showed all the time. I wore stretch pants covered in big flowers, and they hung loose about my thighs. My daughters are small, but they have strong legs, and I cannot tell what their bodies will look like as women. I don't know if they will have my narrow hips or whether their breasts will mimic the curves of my own.
I had the flu recently. Afterwards I went downtown, and I heard two gutter drunks behind me.
"What is that?"
"That thing? That thing is a skeleton."
But my daughter still sat in my lap and absentmindedly pushed aside the collar of my shirt, found a bony sternum on which to rest her head.
Yesterday was the kindergarten walk-a-thon. I went to cheer on the kids and walk around the playground with them. My older daughter made 12 laps: 3 miles. Her face was flushed pink to her forehead after an hour in the sun, but when I offered her a drink, she didn't want water. She said her legs were a little tired, but that it probably meant she was strong. (less)
vegetable beds sprawl across the rocky backyard
interspersed by sprigs of wild grass left to grow beyond weeds
beyond lawnmower fodder
"in the summer I like to lay back here and watch the bugs in the air."
I imagine centipede bugs spider bugs hornet bugs.
"oh(more) this over here is the garden. its organic, all of it, so if you have some seeds feel free to plant them but they must be organic. the same with fertilizers and pesticides. none of that garbage. do you garden much?"
I think back to the garlic I unintentionally sprouted in my kitchen. Now the sprigs are tall, but the tips are flat. A few months ago the guy who mows my lawn mowed over all of the garlic.
"If I'm not busy, maybe."
"Will you be working full time?"
"No but I'm usually busy. So probably not."
She stood akimbo, looked at me straight and said,
"What's the worst part about living with people?"
Having to answer scripted faux empathetic questions posed by landlords intend on disavowing their privilege as landlord, I wanted to say.
she smiled too much and didn't wear a bra.
"Ah. Here's the kitchen. You can eat whatever you want, but we prefer that you cook organic. especially organic meat."
"yeah, that's a nice idea but I'm a grad student and I eat a lot."
"I think of meat as an extra special treat. like chocolate. I only eat it sometimes.when I do I like it to be humane and sustainable."
I like it dead.Dead and red. If its dead, who cares how it died? Why reckon with the past? Sure in an ideal world all killing would happen humanely. if you're going to be picky about it, why not just eat plants and save the killing for weeds?(less)
If the subject in question--or was it better to call them the victim...?--was shorter than he was, regardless of gender, he would sit them on his lap. Most found it quite disturbing--or was that just his biased against him for making it seem more inappropriate than it needed to(more) be?--and tended to blush a lot. Small, easy pickings for his predatory nature of lapsit.
If the subject in question was taller than he was, also regardless of gender--though to record he'd only done it for two females--he would instead sit on their lap. There were plenty who gave him an upheaval immediately, but he was persistent if they were fetching enough. The tolerant ones were his favorite though. Casual mostly, occasionally aloof, sometimes even reciprocating and inviting, once they got the hang of the routine.
The aesthetics of a lapsit--a term coined after repeated use for convenience's sake--were what attracted him to try it on all noteworthy types. The petite delicately settled into his crossed legged lap, then, his own legs crossed when seated on a larger one's lap. His gloved fingers tended to find their way into the soft tendrils, short or long, caressing as a show of gratitude for their leniency.
And then were were the times when he wanted to sit on his lap. Because "my professor is the ideal type for me~ ehehn", being of near identical height, but opposing spectrum statures. His mood decided if he'd push him off before he got there, or just roll his eyes with a 'whatever'.
Tonight it was humid, so it was way too hot for something like that, yet he was being persistent. He groaned inwardly. His usual victims--ahem, subjects--were likely gone for the evening.