Archive for June, 2016

You Can’t

June 27, 2016

You Can’t

I am so sorry. You just cannot move freely here. I have to tell you when to start. I need to open the door, go out into the kitchen and living room. I make sure that the cost is clear. Then and only then can you move in a limited way. Please do not ask me why this is so. I cannot explain it. This is a house but it is not a house. I have no idea what it is. Maybe it is just a bed.

 

 

Water

June 26, 2016

Water

What are you doing? The middle aged guy asked. Oh, no.Not him, not again. She showed him the red bowl. There is no water here. Someone must have knocked it over. I am sorry. You can’t open the door. You have opened it several times already. The cats need water. It’s hot, she said. And I need to go downstairs to get air. It is so stuffy in here. This is not your house. Really, then what am I doing paying rent? You don’t rent the apt. You rent a room. This is my house. How can that be? I don’t see you paying rent. I rent my room from your girlfriend, not you. She shrugged her shoulders and went to get the water. How can I understand these people? Where are they coming from? It’s hard to put myself in their place. Before going to bed she overheard the middle aged guy say something about her being nosy. Let’s tell her friend to find her a new place to live. She wanted to cry, but she was tired. If only there was safety and peace somewhere. Nowhere had never been a fun place.

The Cut

June 21, 2016

The Cut

There you were standing and talking with your friends. There was something different about you. At first, I didn’t know what it was. I looked at you closely. It was your hair. I noticed something different about your hair. Last week it had been longer. Now it looked like a crew cut. You had done it. You went and got a haircut. Why didn’t you let me know? I should have known. I wanted you to tell me. A woman acquaintance approached me. “Yes, what is it?” I asked her sharply. Her laugh was nervous. We stood on the sidewalk. “I’m sorry,” I apologized.” It’s not your fault. I’m just upset about something. It’s nothing to do with you.”

 

 

 

The Taste

June 20, 2016

The Taste

She saw the room. It was her room. It belonged to her and her only. The kitchen with the brand new stove was all ready for her tea kettle. It was ready for the pot where she was going to make her beef stew. Real food! A home cooked meal at last. And the round table with the 4 sturdy-looking chairs. It seemed like a dream, a dream she had not believed she would ever taste again. The thought of this actually happening was like eating a big scoop of chocolate ice cream on a hot summer day. It was sweet and kind; almost a miracle. She was going to take her time enjoying her new treasure.

 

Can’t

June 17, 2016

Can’t

No, it’s impossible. I can’t enjoy. The day is sunny and it is practically summer but I think about that thing, and it spoils everything. There is a shadow, worse than a black shadow, over everything. I have to do the suitcase bit again. I have to go through the moving routine. That has always been painful. It’s like being stuck in the desert with no water, no food, nothing. Moving gets worse and worse. I have done it too many times.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Green

June 17, 2016

Green

There! It’s that one, that one over there. The woman seated by the corner is wearing a green skirt similar to the one I wore years ago, back in the 80s. It was part of a 2-piece suit and I looked beautiful. I was beautiful. The afternoon was hot. It felt hot in that crowded bus. I had to tell him. I was scared. I didn’t know what he would say or react, but I had to run the risk. My love was so genuine. I had never loved like that before. There was not going to be any pressure when we met again. I wasn’t going to force him to anything. It happened. We went through 4 hours—4 long hours. The fluorescent lamp hurt my head. I thought it would burn right through my head. Then it was an abrupt goodbye. That was it.

Green

June 16, 2016

A crowded subway train.That’s exactly the color! The woman seated there by the corner is wearing a skirt just like mine! I wore a suit exactly the same shade of green.How long ago? It must have been in the late  80s. The day of the week was Friday, a Friday afternoon. I was so scared! I wanted to see him. I had to see him. My suit was made of wool and the best I could buy. He had to think I was in control, that I knew what I was going to tell him. I loved him as I had never loved before. I had not forgotten him. At least I wanted him to know that. No pressure, simply those words. We hadn’t seen each other in months. I had my own apt. I was independent. I had changed, changed for the better. An abrupt goodbye. That was it.

Many

June 11, 2016

Many

How many? How many have there been? She lost count. She can’t remember. She probably doesn’t want to remember. The mere mention of the word move makes her cringe. If she could hide under the bed, under somewhere, and make all of it go away! But she’s not a coward. Whatever else she is, she is not that. Now there nothing to do, but go forward, whatever that means. Now she’ll get together the suitcases, the books, the clothes, the china, the pots and plants. The china reminds her of home. The saucers and cups and teapots give her a feeling of comfort. She makes believe she belongs.

The Circles

June 10, 2016

The Circles

From here to there and from one place to another—that’s how she did it. She survived; she put in her best effort. At times it was hopeless. She felt like asking herself: Why am I doing this? Why do I even bother? There has to be a reason. There has to be something I can use this for. There wasn’t anything she saw—not at first glance. Time passed. She seemed to be making no progress. She got older, older and wiser—or just plain older. She didn’t know anymore. What could she think? Who could she ask? Where to put herself? Where could she be safe and secure?

 

 

 

 

The Third

June 10, 2016

The Third

I was not perfect. It was not perfect. Ours was a complicated relationship. We spent a lot of time together. You were lacking something. There was something that you didn’t have and craved very much. I wanted to give that to you; I wished to make you experience the simple things again, like confiding in someone over a cup of coffee or two. We walked the dogs together. We were there for one another.  You were lost in the dark when I met you. The house you lived in was large but it needed cleaning. I loved you. You became my third mother. I wanted to give you more, to make the shadows under your eyes disappear. You were no burden. You were more than my friend and neighbor. You were the me that I am now.