Ah, Election Day night. It’s not so much the grueling media carousel and sense of impending doom (no matter who wins) that permeates the work and play atmosphere, nor the desperate cries for everything that you want in a nation to be squeezed out of one politician who is allowed to be imperfect– even worse, WRONG. What makes me want to flee tonight and wake up the next day to seek my knowledge of what can’t be undone and allows me to move on with life is not apathetic hiding, but a necessary purging. You see, my family and I can talk politics until we turn blue in the face. I’ve talked with my husband about politics until he turned blue in the face. (Did you see what I did with that color pun?) I seek rest and peace.
One of the most peaceful experiences in my life was when I visited a family in Asheville with a college buddy. We left on a whim one weekday to discover more about art, power, and relationship. The grandparents were artists, a writer and a painter/sculptor. They invited us to ask questions, oogle their newest works, and sip hot beverages to stave off the chill. Even though I had just met them, they made me feel like a million dollars. I pray to be that to others, and stop living for just myself.
“Ici, The Moment”
Injuring, frozen air fisted
its way into my nasal passage, behind
my shrunken throat, pale blue wind
on every cell-theory of my skin,
the blank assemblages of biology
trying to warm themselves in bundles
at my nearly-pink cheeks,
flickering wind-wet eyes,
ashen and grasping flaps of mouth,
while their doorbell lulls in the
coiling, fragmented, pretty, sharp
fingers and maple toes and maroon
fruition of Asheville forest.
“Come right in”, she donates her popping,
unwieldy eyes and sweet, toiled fuss.
The neo-sixties’ sunshine is mellowed
by quiet, dangerous theologies and a coffee maker.
She is slim and stunning in black turtleneck,
brief hair to trace her swan’s repose.
I follow her wild introduction to the living room,
where makeshift chairs are hungry leans into the wall.
Frames and soft rain and aging wood
replace my chill with a lecture on kinds of canvases.
Her black-white grandchildren are restless compilations too,
forever mandated by worlds of color.
I feel my predatory heart slink into reverie,
Vanda orchids descend from paints
next to Catholic publications and dust
particles cowering in the moonlight.
Everything is silver and dull,
sculpture pieces and fabric scraps
washed in an inky metamorphosis,
disjointed magazine articles married to floor planks
that creak under simple stories
or variegated evening projects
undone by this sudden bright flurry
of hosting and surprise company.
“Let’s hear your work”, he effortlessly
lifts the children and my spirit
using mountain arms, speaking easy hope.
Unmetered durability sparkles charm
throughout the farming plaid and salt-
pepper hair that both grandkids tug
at like babies for formula. The provider.
Books of his criticized verse span
the length pushing wood to the windows,
the windows trying to puff ice
over heated literature and family,
his cradled eyes slimmed by the laughter.
Suddenly my work is too standard,
a belch of petty observations masking
petty dreams in my spastic
idiosyncrasy of heart—
“stalking”, “clear”, “sunset”, words repressed.
The moon’s response warms, however,
and the faint wash of every art
in the Bomer house ignites accordingly.
With a steady night brilliance
removing itself in coolness,
early narrative has sketched my life
and we are all drawn by the words.