Tuesday, August 16, 2011

August in Minnesota: Perfect Day

Today will be a perfect day. The stillness and the color of light in the sky predict this. The sound of a motor over the lake dies away, another begins; the water is smooth, precise, breathless and without a ripple. I wake with so much love for Josh today, hold him tightly wrapped in my arms and legs. Later he looks for names for the baby in a book at the kitchen counter. Now only stillness, a fragile, quickly stolen noise keeps me company. How long was the longest silence? The waves from the motor boat wash against shore once, twice only. Over the dimpled sand of the beach shadows bend. I am blessed today with this solitary room and this window facing the shore of the lake, a beach I know well. A beach I ran across as a child.

What was it to be a child, so small in my body and big of mind with feeling spirit?

These are not sentences but interruptions that cut like a crosshatch[ed] pattern over an image of beauty. The lost sound of cut language enters here and we listen with our mouth with our body of skin, the mind rendered less useful. Posy ricochets off the page, which is no longer a page, no longer something one can keep between her fingers, before sleep touching her words, running her hand along the edge of her whole world. Now something else so easily misplaced so oddly wound together—up down—do I feel this language the same when it is no longer born out of a work of the body? When it is typed into space, empty of body? I scroll up and cut away an entire limb, scroll down and paste a face on the knee.

And what is my body? House for two. Our child so small it still lives between my hip bones after all these weeks, these three and a half months. People tell me (I don’t know, in joking) that I house a parasite. I am not offended or amused. This child is growing out of my body feeding on me; for the first time I am forced to wonder truly about the science of something after so many years of preferring my own stories.

What was it to be a child, to know so much and get away with your knowing as grownups have mostly forgotten?

The sound of a duck, quack quack, interrupts the carried away nature of my thoughts. How silly to hear a duck quack! The slightest breeze moves through my room. The quacking sounds horse now, a frog in the duck’s throat. Josh has gone for the day. Soon I will be called up to the house for pleasant conversation with my mother and company.

First, however, today will be a perfect day: a still thought will rise out of the quiet, clean sky and I will work to harness it, to give it skin and make it mine.

full term pregnancy

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