Thursday, June 20, 2019

Dispatches from my hermitage.

1. Toast is one of the best things ever invented by whoever invented it. I have two kinds of bread here, because bread is ALSO one of the best things ever invented by whoever invented it, and there is a chic little turquoise colored toaster in the kitchen, which does a fine, fine job. So what I’m saying is, I have toast at least once a day and usually more than that, so my data is fresh, and here are my findings: toast is one of the best things ever invented. By whoever invented it.

Also, the Irish butter I have on hand is excellent.

2. I am feeling it, the way my time does not coincide with the time of most of my people. I wake up to a group text that has fifty-six updates. I text someone and know that they will not see it for half a day, never mind the fact that maybe I shouldn’t text them at all because what if they are a light sleeper? And have some sort of haptic buzz (pretty sure that’s not how haptics work) set for when a text comes in? And my silly and inconsequential text wakes them up at 3 a.m. or 4 a.m. or some other ungodly hour?

On the other hand, I am in the same time zone as Scotland daughter, which means that we can chat at will, and it is great. BUT: she has a job and so, boo, I guess I shouldn’t bother her while she’s at work, I GUESS.

3. I am a discreet observer of life at this little country homestead. Right now, for instance, I can hear children’s voices. The other day, the two mules who live here went galloping by one direction, then galloped back the other direction. Chickens have a whole conversation of their own.

4. I wrote a draft of a poem today, who knows what to make of it? not me, certainly.

5. Reading like mad. So far:
  • Jericho Brown, The Tradition
  • Khadijah Queen, I’m So Fine
  • half of Sycamore, by Kathy Fagan
  • 7/8 of We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta Nehisi Coates
  • Many articles in these old New Yorkers.
  • Have begun Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
and possibly some other trash. Which I will keep to myself.

6. No television feels weird. Okay, but weird. Keeping it very quiet here. Which means I can hear all of the lovely sounds—the songbirds, the dog colloquy, the mule gallop, tractors huffing on the road, and so forth. 

7. Vegetarian sausage almost always oversells itself, tragically.

8. I used to say—I had this conversations with The Historian the other day—that in a democracy, it was one’s obligation to be an optimist. (And all that that implies—to do the work to bring a hopeful future into being—it’s not just the believing that will make it so.) Now, I’m thinking about this and this and this as I’m working on a poem (different one than dispatch #4 above) which may or may not be too fragile a vessel for all that thought, but I’m not done with it yet. It may yet become sturdy enough.

9. Is it time to go for a walk? I think it might be time to go for a walk. 

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