Friday, December 7, 2007

long day's journey into night...

... and miles to go before i sleep.

the lines from the play, the poem, and the melody of thunder road are repeating themselves in my head today. if this cup isn't going to pass away, then the only way out of the fire is through it. but that which does not kill us makes us strong.

how's that for a jumbled mix of metaphors?

the car is warming up, our overnight bags are packed. we have boxes and packing tape and labels. we even have a camera, in the event i can bring myself to memorialize the dissolution of it all. but it almost feels like taking pictures of a corpse.

the moon is nearly back to new. the weather is predicted to be warm, wet and rainy. i can smell the house already.

last year, i lost my dear friend. this december, i pack away and shed the place that when i went there, i knew they'd take me in. for me, for my children, for my brother, even for my mother... that house is our iconic Home. it was built by my great-grandfather. it has never, in a hundred years, been sold.

i wish it had not come to me to dismember, to disperse, to dissolve, this lynchpin. this is a fire i would so rather not walk through. to be present to this experience is to be present to its pain.

last night i had a dream about my agent. he showed up in the middle of a very sunny day while i was packing up the kitchen. he was apologizing that my books had not sold as well as he'd hoped. i remember i smiled and said, oh, that's okay - i just haven't written the right story yet.

and went back to packing.

it would be enough for most people to walk the two-edged sword of memory and necessity. but always i am conscious of this Other, this Presence who peers over my shoulder and whispers from my soul...think of the stories you'll be able to tell. tihnk of them... think of it all.

with a sadist's glee, almost, It dares me dip as fully, as presently, as completely, into the fire of this moment as i can possibly bear, because this is the stuff from which great stories spring. i glimpse the possibility of sunrise at the end of this good night. mother, if this cup cannot pass away, then grant me courage to drain it to the dregs.

and furthermore, the war must end. blessed be.


Stacie said...

that is exactly what i think when i am going through a difficult time. "think of all i'll have to write about!" great attitude. i hope you are feeling strong and hopeful in spite of everything.

Kathy said...

As we say here, when things are really horrible, "We'll dine out for weeks on this one." Or, one day we'll laugh, just not today. Then we laugh.

The house, however, is more painful than a flat-tire in West Jesus in the rain at 2 am. It is harder than your youngest child's graduation. It is packing up your life so far and putting it in the carton with old photographs that no one looks at. But you are right, we survive. And grow. And once in a while pull out the photos and tell our grandchildren about the house.