Saturday, July 31, 2004

JULY 31, 2004 (SATURDAY)

Gretel in Darkness
Louise Glück

This is the world we wanted.
All who would have seen us dead
are dead. I hear the witch’s cry
break in the moonlight through a sheet
of sugar: God rewards.
Her tongue shrivels into gas…

Now, far from women’s arms
and memory of women, in our father’s hut
we sleep, are never hungry.
Why do I not forget?
My father bars the doors, bars harm
from this house, and it its years.

No one remembers. Even you, my brother,
summer afternoons you look at me as though
you meant to leave,
as though it never happened.
But I killed for you. I see armed firs,
the spires of that gleaming kiln –

Nights I turn to you to hold me
but you are not there.
Am I alone? Spies
hiss in the stillness, Hansel,
we are there still and it is real, real,
that black forest and the fire in earnest.

Strange Calm

I find it rather strange that I am not doing anything of dire importance this pale Saturday morning. I’m at a loss to explain this idea of freedom, of not being bound to dates and times and meetings, and I’m not quite sure whether I should exult at the idea of not doing anything this day or to grab at straws in a vain attempt to put some semblance of order into my life.

I have finished my assignments, folded them all up neatly and placed them in properly labeled folders. I have done what I am supposed to do, as if my life was one big object that I could gift-wrap nicely, with sharp creases and folds and a nice shiny ribbon on top, and then present to the world. I know that next week is another new beginning, and that I will once again slip back in busy bee days and bury myself into the order and structure of my life. I still have thesis to worry about, and article deadlines, and chasing after my cheques. I have friends to have coffee with and movies to watch and meetings to attend. I have stories to read and to listen to and to write.

Yesterday, I remember a strange sort of celebratory feeling as soon as I hit the “Send” button on my e-mail account – I was sending my articles to my editor at MWM. That was the last deadline I had for this week, and I am surprised that I was able to finish everything on time and while I am perfectly aware that everything that I submitted was not my best work, I am still secure in the knowledge that I’ve done the best that I could.

I suppose it was one of those days when everything just fell into place: attended Tatay’s oath-taking ceremony as dean with the family in the afternoon; was excused from French class; watched a good movie with a good friend, and while dinner was short of my expectations, the company more than made up for it.

And perhaps one of the best conversations I’ve had with one of my confidants (I have four, rotating on a regular basis) was yesterday evening, over a cup of coffee and half an éclair. It was a perfect nightcap to a day that comes rarely – a good day when you can sleep soundly at the end of it all, happy in the knowledge that the universe is all right. At least for the moment.

Addendum

Wrote the first part this morning, and then realized that we were out of Internet time, so had to wait until the free hours started. At any rate, just realized that I watch too many reality TV shows for my own good. There's Queer Eye and America's Next Top Model and I went through an Amazing Race phase and Survivor and Fear Factor and yeah, what does that say about me? ^_^

Oh, and I painted my nails pink today. Hehe. I am such a girly girl.

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