Wednesday, March 17, 2010


I don't know for sure that I've ever slept so badly as I'm sleeping now, or felt so generally unrested: the things to do, to be done, pile up at the doorways, on the porch, drift to the windowsills. A baby coming, for Cantore's sake. A novel coming. Things to do in the shed. Things to do in the nursery. Trees to be planted out back and out front before the baby comes. Coats of paint on the trim here and there. Loose doorknobs. Wiring projects. The countless things I can't think of now that I'll think of at four a.m. when I wake out of a dream featuring me being married to one of my brothers and having as a child the other one.

We're calling her Edward. Edward James Olmos. We don't know the sex.

And yet, friends and fans of midwest flooding, we here in the south have turned, if not for good, at least for now, to spring. It is spring according to almost any casual measure: beds of blooming daffodils outside the arts building at the puppet show, beds of blooming daffodils outside the shed here at the satellite campus of the puppet show. Maybe that's only one casual measure. Step outside. Invent your own. The pansies, all but dormant all this winter, are now blooming. The yards are greening up and down the block. The trees are right and right on the edge. The wind smells like something else. Today, on campus, the certain and only smell of cut grass and gasoline.

Edward, my dear daughter, one spring your father lost his mind. Worked at it. Forgot, for long stretches, that most basic of things: to write down what the weather had been that day. Today it was warm, but not fully warm. I never saw a thermometer. I'm going to say low-to-mid sixties. I'm going to say sun and clouds. I'm going to say that if it rains overnight, I won't be stunned. I'm going to say that I've seen the forecast, sweetheart, and though all else seems impossible to understand or predict, for the next couple of days, anyway, it's going to be so nice out there that we might maybe just from time to time forget all the rest of all this.

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