Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Don't it always seem to go

(Pre-Script: This post best encapsulated in the song, "100 Years," #2 on the playlist, so please go down to the playlist, click on that song, then come back and resume reading. I'll wait.) (...still waiting...)

("...That you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone"*
-fought til it's won,
-sought 'til it's dawn,
and the path is in front of you,
illuminated by sweat...)

I remember driving past the snow on the hills in some state that was not my own.

Look at the snow out the window

as you are driven past it

in a warm car

brother's knees bumping into your knees

with the heater on

and the 8 track player playing songs you can sing along to

Things were legal then that are now illegal

like 8 tracks,

and station wagons,

and children in the way back

smashed up against the window but never claustrophobic

now the children have to be buckled tightly in a 5 point harness until they are 17

or 700 lbs

whichever comes first

and these days, you never know which will come first

it's because the children all eat red food coloring and blue yogurt, and someone (gasp) gave them a piece of candy instead of a carrot stick,

someone said, "sure, have the gluten full white flour rich birthday cake with sugar and butter"

when I was a kid we ate the birthday cake

and the carrots

and did not get fat

and did not get fat

and rode our bikes without helmets

and jumped out of trees without helmets

and loved where old trees pushed their roots up under the sidewalk, nature working with the modern era to create a bike ramp, what else are tree roots under the sidewalk good for?

I used to ride around the block around and around and around

singing some made up song or other

used to roller skate without padding down the driveway over and over

falling down, getting back up

scrapes and bruises everywhere, and Dad would paint orange Mercurochrome
in the shape of a tree
right on the scraped spot;
he always said it wouldn't hurt, but it always did, just a little
but a little was plenty.

I ate the mulberries right off of the mulberry tree without washing them

stained my fingers mulberry color, then wiped my fingers on my jeans and shirt;

eventually all of my clothes were grass stained or mulberry stained


My cat was a cat with a collar but no tags

who adopted me

by hanging out on my porch every day until

I adopted him back

even when he scratched my face

and got shot with a bee bee gun

and got trapped in the neighbors rabbit trap for 2 days

I still loved him.
when he showed up dead in a neighbors yard a year later, he received a proper

backyard burial

I wrote the epitaph myself, pinned it to his little grave marker myself, too

and when I climbed the mulberry tree to the highest branch I could climb

and jumped out,

it felt like I was flying, I was flying

for a split second but then

my teeth landed in the soft pillow of my tongue

I cried and cried, so hurt and defeated, but

the next morning, my bruised tongue was the proudest trophy I owned, and I showed it off and bragged loudly on the school playground

I still have the scar

it reminds me of that time when I was not afraid to climb

as high as I could, let go, push out, and jump.

The very highest tree in the yard was not climbable, though;

It shot straight up and I remember thinking

that if I could climb to the top of it, I would be in the clouds

I would be floating up there, waving with God in the sky down to the little ant people stuck on the ground below.


*Lyrics from "Big Yellow Taxi"


Derek said...

Can you make a thing on your blog where I can just click on the little picture of the "thumb's up" and then you'll get a comment that says, "Derek likes this."?

vic-a-la said...

i like it too! that was great, mishie! "the soft pillow of my tongue." great line. and i love the point of it all.