May 19th, 2009



Maybe I have a hole in my head where all the words have leaked out.

I looked down around my feet to see if they were there, but all I see is bright green new grass. Sometimes pavement. Sometimes shoes.

Where have the words gone? Have they traded in their D's for M's and gone inching off, into the grass, greening themselves with protective coloring? Camo-worms.

I know that technically I shouldn't have used apostrophes there with D & M, but I seem to remember that sometimes apostrophes are necessary when the lack of them would cause confusion. You wouldn't be sure what I was talking about if I had written Ds and Ms, see? Actually, I believe the lack of apostrophes always causes confusion. That's why so many people feel the need to pluck them from thin air and stuff them into words where they don't belong.

If the words WERE leaking out, would my mind eventually be empty and still, peaceful as a pond with no wind to stir it, no fish to jump, no skating waterbugs? Or would they keep welling up from my subconscious, an endless flow slithering down around my ears, over my shoulders to plump onto the ground.

I bet some words plump when they drop. Words like plump, for example. Words like sofa and potato and hippopotamus. Others do that wafty, leaf-dancing air spiral: kinetic, mantis, articulate. Still others dive in a smoothing glide straight out, at an angle, coming to rest like a paper airplane—one of the ones that actually flew instead of immediately nose-diving. Like glycerine, maybe. Or singular.

I like the idea of little word-worms. I'm thinking more of the inchworm type of worm; caterpillars, really. Not worms at all.

Things that made me glad today: Having a good Barky day. Wearing a new necklace. Sunshine. Kohlrabi and snap pea sprouts. That my kids actually agreed to and ate speedily up the omelettes I made them for dinner (a first). A great progress report from Karin's teacher (and Martin's last week). A half-day tomorrow and a 4-day weekend ahead. A chatty phone call from my brother. That one place on our walk where Martin and I can't figure out what smells so good: the lilacs? Those little yellow-blossomed weeds? The cherry trees? These bushes whose name I can never remember? Martin and I are pretty sure it must be the lilacs, but there are lilacs EVERYWHERE right now, and it's always just in this one spot that we get hit with this sudden blast of sweet-smelling-something. It's like airborne candy perfume.

*Title from a quote by Goethe