Posts tagged "list"
What I Took

What I Took

From my mother’s house, in 1982, when I left for college—for good: her prized crimson cashmere sweater, which she never wore (Orlando, average temperature in January: 70 degrees Fahrenheit), the most collegiate item in our house, which I washed in warm water, which turned my t-shirts, sheets, and underwear pink, all of which I put...
Glossary of Chain Accidents

Glossary of Chain Accidents

Because I used to stare at Mendy Frankl’s Adonis curls in statistics, because I had a pair of silver boots from Baker’s I got on clearance for $14.99 and Sharpied them to near-extinction, because I dreamed of being the kind of girl who had a red high heel on the end of a keychain, as...
What Bad Owners Say at the Dog Park

What Bad Owners Say at the Dog Park

1. He’s friendly. 2. He never does that. 3. That’s his way of playing. 4. He’s still learning. 5. Pookie, come here. 6. He’s not so good on recall. 7. Pookie’s still learning how to listen, isn’t he? 8. Watch out for his leash! 9. Pookie, come! Come, Pookie! Are you listening? If you don’t...
Things I Did Between the Follow-Up Mammogram and the Ultrasound

Things I Did Between the Follow-Up Mammogram and the Ultrasound

1. Checked email. 2. Read an article about the genetic roots of trauma. 3. Imagined the next scene in a short story I’d begun at 4 a.m. during my most recent bout of insomnia—a poltergeist coming to consciousness during the adolescence of a girl named Radya. In the next scene, perhaps Radya’s parents will bring...
Lick

Lick

What is already history: Waking in the dark. Dressing in the dark. Reviewing the checklist of things to remember. Driving on icy roads. Unloading the luggage, kissing goodbye. Showing identification, checking bags. Removing coat, removing shoes, watch, jewelry. Aimless browsing in airport shops, hoping a snack might look appealing at 6 a.m. or a magazine...
Misinformation

Misinformation

When I was young I dressed like a boy, though I became irate when misidentified as such. Even now I am sometimes called sir. I object less. When I was young, the boys I loved wore their hair in the style of a bowl cut. I enjoyed the mushroom shape rimming round their heads. Now...
Pieces Dad Mails Me Before He Moves Away: A List

Pieces Dad Mails Me Before He Moves Away: A List

1.  A manila envelope. Our names: “Annalise” and “Dad.” Usually he writes “Annalise Mabe,” and “Logan Mabe.” Usually Dad’s script is rushed, informal, as the pen misses its mark with a hurried pressure. 2. A clear, cubed box with a crystallized lock of my ash brown hair from the summer we traveled to Louisville for...
I Go Back to Berryman’s

I Go Back to Berryman’s

All of the streets in the trailer park are named for fruits or for dead presidents—Cherry, Lincoln, Peach, Garfield—and if you walk them and peer through windows with parted curtains, you will see love being made, hate being made, bodies being discovered, bodies being forgotten, smoking and drinking and swearing and Bible reading, you will...

Lag Time

It doesn’t thunderstorm in California. Not like those from my memory of home. I listen for them at night when the sky half-promises, but it rarely delivers the noise I need. This I know: If you count the time it takes between the flash of a Kansas lightning bolt and the crack before the roll...
An Address to My Fellow Faculty Who Have Asked Me to Speak About My Work

An Address to My Fellow Faculty Who Have Asked Me to Speak About My Work

My work is to write this sentence and revise it into that sentence. To take this word and replace it with that word. My work is a novel I wrote from five to seven a.m. for more than two years and that will never be published. My work is to be the person you trust...
When You Meet My Father

When You Meet My Father

Ask him what growing up on the farm in Two Harbors was like. Ask him about what he learned on the farm, where he milked cows before going to school. Ask him about college in Duluth, that one time he stole a beer truck, the married woman who desired an affair. Ask him about those...

Our Neighborhood

When we walk our dogs at night we see a blue ten-speed bike locked to a telephone pole in our neighborhood.  In the morning it’s locked to a different pole. The neighbor in the enormous house behind ours is a lawyer named Shambie who rides his European bicycle or gathers pomegranates in his back yard....

If

… the six pathologists at Colorado’s Air Force Academy had voted differently on the diagnosis of the biopsy from your cheek–the same cheek you popped with your thumb before shuffling cards for Gin Rummy, if they had voted four melanoma, two sarcoma instead of the other way around, if they had not voted wrong on...

After the Sun Melted

inspired by Aftermath by Elane Johnson After the sun melted on the top hat of the Mad Hatter with Alice, outside the window in Central Park; after your doctor refused to talk to you, when you were behaving crazy, because the tumor had spread to your brain; after the doctor told us there was nothing...

Variations on a Home Depot Paint Sample

Desert Sunrise, 230B-4 To mix Desert Sunrise 230B-4, combine equal parts vodka, orange juice, pineapple juice, and troposphere; add grenadine syrup to taste. Throw in blender with ice cubes and a handful of red dirt. Blend. Next drive westward all night along I-80 until you reach Wyoming, and, when you see in your rearview the...

Things That Appear Ugly Or Troubling But Upon Closer Inspection Are Beautiful

(after Sei Shonagon) A river in winter with ice floes jammed violently against one another; you can see dark water in between the white and gray floes, sparkling in the sunshine. Abandoned barns, their huge roofs sagging like the backs of tired horses. The slick, black body of a baby goat, stillborn, lying in the...

Small Love Letters

“Cleopatra’s nose, had it been shorter, the whole face of the world would have been changed.” —Pascal, Pensées I. The real history of the world happens in small ways because it concerns the history of love, itself a series of small events. A glance might shift the order of everything, move the heart into open...

The Soils I Have Eaten

The state soil of New York is named for the place where a man lost his finger to a rattlesnake. The finger lays quiet in the ground. The snake’s great-great-grandsnakes still chitter through this soil. Sometimes one snake gets the idea he can blink his eye. He concentrates on this single violet thought. A slick frog crunches...