My heater sounds like the roar of the sea. Pressing my face into the pillow I feel no, not cool salty breeze, but the temptation to run, away from everything, go back to the corn field left behind me and my favorite climbing tree on South Street.
I’ve always liked running, the sweat trickling down red patches of skin and the churn of power in legs that were told to be still for so long, a childhood of too-long, rosary beads and that song about a man told to row the boat ashore.
I am in love with the color yellow because it lifts up my blues, softens the rooms I am held in, transports my body back to the little laundry room on South, the whirr of washed sheets, my mother’s fifth load of the day. We each had a cubby on that yellow wall, home for out-of-dryer clothes, and I can’t remember it being any other way: beautiful yellow walls in the room my mother worked each day.
I sip coffee these mornings and I look to the sky, and today it’s streaked with a salmon hue, the clouds settling in like lily pads on still water and I remember the firmness of my father’s hand teaching me to cast the fishing line. It got stuck in a tree. He brought home a magnificent catch one day and ended up slicing his hand and off to the hospital he went, and I didn’t want to go fishing again anyway.
When I remember to lay on the grass and look to the blue, I can close my eyes and breath, a soft in-and-out way, and I can hear the tall grass dance and the murmur of the trees, narrating the stillness of summer I thought I’d always have, bubble wrapped with chatter of siblings and the promise of home.
Now, Frost has taken up space on the lawn and the heater still churns and the oak in the neighbor’s yard is slipping off her yellowing shawl, exposing knotted elbows and pointed shoulders with such ease and such grace. I want to be like her: stripped down to my core in such a way that all the other’s just know: that is my way.