Road Trip 2020, Day Seven

there is no escape here.

only evasion.

it’s up this curvy road packed with hill after horse-country hill,

packed with perfect fences and horses whipping their tails,

with cars zooming past, some honking at my hugging-the-shoulder presence as i pedal

pedal

pedal

past these race-won mansions,

these stacked-limestone walls that can’t trap me in or out,

into the sunny, humid heat of midday Kentucky,

so far from home, so far from home,

so near to everything that is hard and easy, up and down these endless hills

in a circle that isn’t a circle.

Coronatine, Day Sixty-one

I went to the grocery store today, and I don’t want to write about the nightmare I had last night where no one was wearing a mask.

Could you imagine, three months ago, having a nightmare about people not wearing masks in Target?

Actually, King Soopers was well-stocked today. Everyone I saw had a mask on. People at 8:30am obeyed the one-way aisle rules, and best of all? I stayed within my budget.

I made a budget for my post-work husband, starting at the beginning of May. $200 a week. It may sound extraordinarily excessive, but we’ve got six mouths to feed, and these are American prices, after all.

But I bought extras today. This bugleweed. A roll of packaging tape. And sushi because fuck Wednesday cooking.

And, my nightmares should end soon.

Because my post-work husband got a job, a non-union, non-seniority-screws-you job, doing exactly what he’s great at and wants to do forever, in the midst of a pandemic.

And.

And you can call it what you want. White privilege. True. Luck. Absolutely. Divine intervention. Maybe.

Or just… fate. The fate that led him through the Air Force to me, that led the boy to our doorstep, that led three beautiful daughters into our home, that led his previous experience to him becoming the best candidate out of all the others being laid off.

Coronatine, day sixty-one. It’s a beautiful image filled with pets, hope, and love.

And I want to hold on to this non-nightmare feeling for as long as I can.

And.

This cat was born to be a model. Good night.

Coronatine, Day Fifty-seven

if i could be a cat

curled into this ball on a bed

unaware of what noise could keep me awake

unaware of human suffering,

of parenting four teens too afraid to talk to each other,

too afraid to talk to me,

too afraid to build relationships

(so much like their mother, their father, this fear)

(but he isn’t even ours, how is he so much like us?)

unaware of the world outside of this fluff,

this sumptuous, protective ball of fluff,

maybe i’d be a cat. 

 

but i’m only human

and have brought these girls into the world

and this boy into our home

and the world came corona-crashing soon after

and we only have each other

in this lonely, empty house

in this loud-mouthed, angsty house

in this loving, hating house

 

we don’t have this bed, this softness, this protection.

we can only find these feelings in words. 

small gestures. 

trying to speak new languages. 

trying to see who or what we don’t notice.

trying to find this level of peace, 

this cat-comfort peace,

with each other.