PROMPT: Use the repeating line of there are / there is… (what are the things that are in your life?)
Press Pound to Skip by Nathalie Vachon
There are crocuses in my back yard, a clump of purple that keeps grabbing my attention, stopping me in my tracks. There are flowers that shouldn’t bloom yet; the one I bought two years ago whose name I have forgotten is already showing pink buds. There are leaves that need raking. There are thoughts in my head that need to be put to rest.
There are worries; a basement of filing cabinets with sterile walls and florescent bulbs that hum in the background of my life.
There are shoulders that have a hard time falling, releasing, resolving. There are messages on the answering machine that I have not answered. Press 1 to listen. Press 7 to erase. Press pound to skip. I skip over so much and there are emotions piling up. Seems I can’t feel them fully, can’t face them straight on so I press pound to skip…
Father’s death, press pound. Catch a glimpse of him, remember his drafting table, hear the ice cubes clinking around in his glass, try not to swallow the words he said or the fears that took him down.
Uncle’s death. I don’t even remember that he has died sometimes. I just think he is back in Quebec where I last saw him. Try not to trip over the fragility of life. Press 9 to save his smile in my memory.
My mother called the other day. Her test results came back, the cancer is clear. I don’t call her back. I just press pound, skip past. And her words echo back when I do the dishes or pull the covers up, arrange duvet and pillows in the morning.
I am so slow to process this life, all the words said. There are a million memories in my heart. So many words clinging off this pulsing organ. How can one feel it all? How can one let in each word, each harsh look or even each smile? How can we process this fragility, this fleeting flicker of being?
All I seem to be able to do these days… is press pound.