Saturday February 14, 2015
An explanation from the 506 TTC driver
Toby walks in the door and no one looks but he thinks they do. That kind of everyday simple delusion. That kind of heartbeat. He sits near the front of the place, where he can keep an eye on comings and goings. He looks sideways, out the corner of his right eye, where the colours start to fade from real to imaginary. He sees Charles before he’s come in. He’s pulling his scarf tighter around his neck. He’s putting his hands in his pockets.
“I like your scarf. That’s a nice shade of red.”
“Would you like a beer?”
“I’m not drinking this month. I’ll have a cranberry juice, though?”
“I’ll get it for you – ”
“I don’t mind – ”
“Please, I’d love to. It would be my pleasure.”
Charles’ sister had set them up. “He’s intelligent! He’s quirky! He’s got square glasses!” She’d sold Toby well, like a lollypop from a remote island or a new kind of fighting fish in the pet store. Charles was reluctant, only because he’d had his heart broken seven years ago.
Saturday April 19, 2014
i knelt down close to her unmoving body. i wasn’t about to touch her just in case. i didn’t know why, but just in case seemed like the most appropriate reason. she had on the scarf i gave her. she thought she was borrowing it, but i was planning the whole time to just say, keep it, annie, it looks better on you. i never really got the chance to tell her. now she’s probably on her way to dying thinking that she was dying in my favourite scarf. i would have liked for her to go in peace; still haunts me that i didn’t let her know sooner. all the memories of us stealing earrings and toothpaste filled my head. i can’t remember now whose idea it was to take all that stuff but i do know that i haven’t felt a rush like that since. neither of us really wanted those shitty earrings. we just liked the idea of taking something with some kind of value. the toothpaste, i’m pretty sure we just needed. i reached out to let my energy sort of drip off my fingers and into her scalp just in case. i didn’t know why, really, maybe just in case that was the one thing keeping her from being already dead.
Monday, September 16, 2013
Codependent No More
I wore my straw hat, and my long red swishy skirt, and a lace top that used to belong to a woman named Moondancer. I’d taken great care in painting my toenails, even though they’d only peek out under the hem, dancing coral crescents. I wanted it completely quiet in the house. Even though I loved music, I preferred to listen to the rhythm of the ravine, the crooning of the wind through the chimes hanging on the porch. I made skillet cornbread dotted with hot peppers. Your favourite. A big ol’ pot of chilli simmered on the stove, chock full of beans, tomato, garlic, cumin, vegetables from Fredrick’s garden, and all the thoughts I thought while chopping and stirring. Mostly of you. Mostly of the sound of your breath when you’re waking.
I knew that you were the one I would cook for when it turned cold, last year. I got home, hung my scarf, and saw that you’d taken my forest green parka from the antique cedar chest and hung it up in the coat closet, making me ready for the change.