Sunday Epiphanies

I remember doing a handstand for a man
in his living room in the suburbs. It was a Sunday. I had class at eight the next morning.
The room was dark, lit only from the light in the kitchen. There were neutral colors
artwork and artifacts from the Ming Dynasty. He held his drink and told me to be careful.
And I thought, that's not very fun. That's not in the spirit of this whole enterprise.
He was older, much older, already married and divorced
with three children
and I wanted him to see in me a chance to have everything
he'd ever wanted, everything he'd missed.
Though it wasn't him who wanted anything, it was me
wanting him
to want those things.

When I was a teenager
and it was Sunday night 
I would look at the digital clock
The blue numbers glowed in segments
two lines, for one. five lines, for three. three, for seven.
I counted them and made a formula that told me
if I had a certain number, I would be lucky.
I don't remember what the formula was
or if I believed it
but I couldn't sleep and needed something
to do, something other than plotting, fantasizing, or watching Nick at Nite
-- though I did all that, too.

Today it is Sunday, September 9. I am thirty-two. In two weeks I will be thirty-three.
I feel scared by this. I should I think.
I have no children. I'm changing careers.
Moving away from a city that has left an impression
that I'm not sure I can justify
even for fiction, for experience, for the sake of living life.
I wanted for many years to go back to 19, to a time when I thought
I went from joyful to conflicted, from motivated and strategic, even nonchalantly
to insular and pensive and fearful--in its former and current sense
Now I just want to make the most of the days that remain
they seem to grow fewer and fewer 
and they seem to tell me: there's no time to engage in fantasy about going back
you need to take this day -- and make it perfect
What I miss about my twenties was the feeling of optimism 
Am I tricking myself -- I think I was truly upset only twice. And both times
I consoled myself with the knowledge that I would be happier in the future
I remember sitting at the computer, unhappy with something I'd done
with the man from the suburban house, and I thought: by March I'll be fine
Now I console myself with the knowledge
that others have gone through life
through worse times than these
and they survived
even found a way to take the day
in the absence of perfection -- to take the day
exactly as it is


Anonymous said...

very well written!i have determined that you express eloquently what i feel so "roughly" ... is "roughly" a word?

abbimireilledion said...

That is very sweet -- and means a lot to me -- thank you!