Do you have any idea how many hours I have spent on 33 words? It was Sunday. We were eating eggs with peppers and cheese and sausage.
Kind of, but you seem to enjoy it.
No, it’s making me crazy.
I had written before church, I wrote on the way to church, I wrote in the car after church as my husband put our groceries in the trunk and returned the basket to the grocery store. And I was writing, right then, as we talked and read the paper
But you keep at it. You are always remaking yourself.
I had to think about that. I had heard that before…from my dance teacher when I said I was applying to the School of Architecture. That was not long after my divorce, I had to remake myself. Now, not so much. Now, I just have this compulsion to capture things—my photographs in words.
After you lose people you love, you hold onto what you can. So much of what I once overlooked I now notice—like things not appreciated until they are gone. I write about them, to keep them with me.
In the subzero temperatures of my walk later that afternoon, the snow plowed sidewalk was a mirror of the frozen lake—the checkered gray textures patterned themselves on water just as they had on the cement. I noticed that. One was full, the other stripped.
The spindly stalk of dried weed, intricate in its golden threaded finery, was regal against the backdrop of snow at dusk.
I walked on. Emotions edgy, thoughts scattered. Fatigue had flattened my senses. No words came. Toes frozen in pain, I picked up the pace and stopped observing.
That night, I kept returning to the words I had strung together, restrung and restrung them—my 33 words. Later that night I stopped the nonsense and posted them. To keep them with me, like 33 little friends…or 33 little enemies.