"When I am with you, I feel the intensity of an unknown
I am too often pregnant in my dreams and it does
bother me somewhat that I refuse delivery when it
needs to happen, claiming that I can't have my baby
because I won't be pregnant anymore and that is
where the emptiness begins."
from One Love Affair
the poem "He wrote in Code"
I just read this, now and it reminds me of how I only ever seem to write about real life, and the story in this poem is so sad and lovely and it reminds me mostly of Sarah, because she could write this, if it had happened to her. Yesterday, I workshopped a poem about Grandma, and I got mad when the class didn't get it, when they asked me to maybe change the plot, because I wanted them to know that this is REAL life, and that I can't just go changing it. I wanted to tell them, I AM NOT A CHILD AND MY GRANDMOTHER DOES NOT HAVE ALZHEIMER'S AND YES, WE MAKE BREAKFAST FOR TEN, WHY DON'T YOU BELIEVE ME. I am struggling, but not giving up that I will find a way to explain this. This being my life, this being the spaces in between us, this being the distance between my mouth and the words I speak, this being that overwhelming sense that we are always feeling the same thing but can't talk about it because we don't know how, so we watch movies instead and that's OK. This being my belly full of stars. Mine Blood Relations we are a miracle. In creative writing I am always surprised that people almost know what I am trying to say, and that convinces me that I will be able to explain all of this one day. If the story isn't clear, the feeling always is, and that is what's really important, and I am excited that through time I have learned how to explain myself with less words. Maybe I will send this to DJD instead of stories about the Carpe. Maybe, maybe I am good enough that he will read it and enjoy it, even if it is rough and needs lots of work. I am convinced that he knows about love the way I know about love, so I want him to read it.
I already have lots of edits in mind, lots and lots, but here is what I have so far:
Grandma recites Wordsworth to me before we go to bed and then tells me she will probably die soon. I sleep on this, curling myself around the thought of her absence, just to see what it feels like. I dream up this conversation to the tick of the grandfather clock (which grandma taught me to wind three times today, to ensure I won't forget). "Does it kill you that you can't remember it all? and Grandma, before you answer, can you just take my heart out?" "Sometimes you just have to learn to love the empty spaces." I wake up to the smell of bacon.
At Grandma's we make breakfast for ten even though we are only two. How many times in my life will I have the perfect moment? over and over and over again.
This is already an inaccurate account of the true story, but I am learning you have to sacrifice some things in order to get the feeling right.