Coffee Log, Year 2, Day 284

Hi.

Coffee: Maxwell House Master Blend, Office Coffee

I hear E showering. My bedroom’s adjacent to the bath. It sounds like those National Geographic tapes they’d show us in high school, the ones made in the 80’s. A fuzzy green rainforest, idle koalas, bird feathers and eggs. The net effect of the sound is to remind me I’m not alone.

Most of my best memories are in the rain. There’s a history museum in Daizafu. It’s behind the temples, still a tourist trap, but off the drag. We got lost trying to find it, A and I, walked around the forest and out to a local highway where they’d grafitti’d the walls. It started raining. It waited until we were out from under the trees. She’s soaked, I’m soaked, but it’s summer so we’re still warm. At the museum, AC was made short work of us, and we were dry, but less happy.

I went to see the Christmas Lights in Atlanta. We were thinking about skipping because the temperature had dropped and there was a hard rain on. It was night, the lights were in the gardens, we’d been walking all day, cinnamon visions of staying home. But M and I got ourselves up and went anyway. It was magical. We weren’t alone, but the rain made it so it felt like it. Cascades of color, a friendly shift worker by the only fire, greens golds and blues, every color multiplied below our umbrellas. The cold made me miss you even though you were near me, and when I felt that longing all I had to do was reach out a little and it was filled.

My mom put on an impromptu scavenger hunt one summer when I was 8 or 10. It was a gray day, almost raining, and I was watching kids cartoons, but she slipped me a bit of pink paper with a note on it and hurried off, not waiting for me to see what it had to say. It was a clue. It led me to the bathroom, my bedroom, and even outside. Outside, the rain was getting harder. Little bits cracked the paper and swirled all the inks around. I don’t remember what I found out in the gardens, but I know it was wholly mine. Under the gray, wet skies, the mystery of the treasure hunt was bigger than me, bigger than my mother, something up-above eternal. I loved my mom for helping me toward it, and then I was changed.

Anyway, it didn’t rain today, but the sound of the shower is almost enough.

Currently Reading: Giovanni’s Room, James Baldwin

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For after all, the best thing one can do when it is raining is let it rain.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Coffee Log, Day 199

Hi.

CoffeeTea: Bigelow’s Earl Grey, pre-packed (New pot is purchased; will use tomorrow)

I was lying down in a hot shower thinking about your cats. You had two. I assume you still have them. In my head, I wrote this poem:

***

Two lump sums
Additive of: day-naps; kitchen scurries; fur balls.
One of you is a great gray fumble, kept to profound lounging, nighttime meowing
At your own shadow, his/her shadow
You chase your tail sometimes, but mostly you’re chasing sleep.
One of you is a slim speckled princess, white gloves on all your hands hiding paws that got declawed.
A safe tragedy
You’d surely use them.

I reckon I’m stuck with
The tick-bite memory
Of lounging in your daytimes
Or napping through our bedtimes
And that one hot day in summer
Where we sat on bathroom floors picking at each other’s
Family fleas.

***

I toweled off. I looked in the mirror. I’m getting older. Cats age faster. A long, lazy day dreaming of things I won’t see again.

Currently Reading: Autumn, Ali Smith

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“Holding this soft, small living creature in my lap this way, though, and seeing how it slept with complete trust in me, I felt a warm rush in my chest. I put my hand on the cat’s chest and felt his heart beating. The pulse was faint and fast, but his heart, like mine, was ticking off the time allotted to his small body with all the restless earnestness of my own.” – Haruki Murakami, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

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