I keep my heart locked up and sealed in a watertight safe.
It isn't very large in size, the safe, not my heart. My heart is enormous.
But my heart has been crushed and trampled so often that it's pulled in on itself the way a child huddles i(more)n a corner to avoid detection from a punishing parent.
"Save me," my heart whispered to me every night.
"I can't even save myself," I'd whisper back regretfully.
"I'm dying. Freezing. Turning black from frostbite," my heart pointed out.
"But I need you," I explained, "how am I supposed to live without you?"
"You call this living?" My heart is nothing if not brutally honest.
After a very long heated discussion my heart and I decided a little time apart wouldn't kill us, but perhaps it would make us stronger.
Cliches, after all, are cliches for a reason.
So I oh so carefully wrapped my heart in blue velvet to match my eyes and set it gently in a small safe.
I went outside and buried it deep beneath some dying flowers next to a pear tree growing near my bedroom window.
I visit my heart at least once a day, sometimes I bring a book and read aloud. Faerie tales seem to please my heart most of all, for some reason my heart remains hopeful, even when it's six feet under.
I'm not sure how much longer I can go on without my heart. It's very lonely around these parts and even lonelier without my heart thumping in my chest.
Sometimes I'm tempted to dig it up, but I fear I'm not strong enough to protect my heart yet.
Yesterday I pricked my finger on a thorny rose and watched my blood seep through the soil in search of my heart.(less)
My little brother has always got his wagon with him. His little red old-fashioned pull-wagon. Maybe it's a good thing we have a minivan--but otherwise, I think, maybe he'd be done with this phase now. If my mom would've had to make him leave Erica at home--that's the wagon's(more) name, Erica--then he wouldn't think he always have to have her with him.
Because he doesn't just need Erica. He needs the contents of Erica--a whole bunch of packages of different things, each sealed in a piece of brown wrapping paper, the kind you wrap meat in. My mom buys it on these big rolls, she always has even since before Peter. Uses it for everything--wrapping stuff in the fridge and freezer; wrapping things to put in our lunches; wrapping packages to mail. I used to be embarrassed to have all brown paper packages filling up my Minnie Mouse lunch box, but then one day Sally Anne Jacobs said it was "Cool" and since then, it is.
We use the paper for other stuff too; it's the best drawing paper, for one thing. And if you want, you can draw on a huge scale. My mom had to make some rules about that: only one giant drawing per day (though sometimes, if we have several drawing sessions in a day, she lets us break that rule), which means only one piece of paper that's square or even bigger. And the role is like three feet tall, so square is big. Bigger is... well, bigger.
And Pete uses the paper for wrapping things to ride in Erica. He's really good at it. Like, stuffed animals have to have their faces exposed, so they can see where we're going, and of course so they can breathe. (less)
she sleeps sealed in a hermetically
in saran wrap to keep
the dust out.
(more) windows wide open to let the night air
"it's better that way..."
my allergies..." she said apologetically
"HOW DO YOU SLEEP?"
the big question
"with the heat on," i said, picturing
the rows and rows of dust bunnies
comfortably in my blinds.
"oh," she said, "that would be a problem,
perhaps a lovemaking in a yurt
in a desert
or in a plasticine bubble on the moon
perhaps, a yellow submarine,
or a slow rising vinyl and frequently cleaned
where her allergies to every blasted now blooming
tree in the northwest
would not be
i swear the woman is allergic to a sneeze.
"marry a happy man," my
father said to me once out of the blue-green
tunneled haze of his narcissism
back when i was young and
she for all her allergies, while
not a man,
because even for all the
health challenges, the wet mucous thunderbolts the great goddess kali
sends to her, kali's long
tongue wagging in anticipation of this
this only human has prevailed
by vacuuming her 1000 ply sheets
& sleeping in saran wrap
and then daring
stealing through her night windows
to kill her.