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Monday, October 7, 2013

Open letter to a friend: such ongoing correspondence is part of my wellness plan.


Right after receiving your email I went outside under the canopy to attend to a shiitake potato and chard omelet cooking on the camp stove. It was lightly sprinkling outside. A loud chicken like sound came from the ridge and a turkey came swooping low and flew inches from my head. In Native American lore this could be read as good luck, as in winning the lottery or selling your house. Turkey is give away eagle.


Like Proust I go to bed early. It wards off bad thoughts and causes me to get up at 5:00 and write in the dark. I tried to continue with The Underground, thinking to myself it is not too long so I can get through it even if I don't enjoy it, and maybe I will find away to enjoy it. I read about three more pages and decided that at only six pages I was not a committed reader and could put the book back on the shelf. So I tried Proust. I'm somewhere around page 20 and enjoying it. I actually bought this book back when I was dealing books on the Internet. It has water damage. Someone once described the book as Proust's own bath water. That appealed to me. Not the worst thing someone could say about a work of art, used bath water. I'm doubting that remembrance of things past has a "main thrust" Anyway I think I've found some good reading for a while.


I had dreams last night that got me thinking about the theme of my book, crisis and suicide. The part of the dream that sort of woke me up is when I angrily threw a bag of books at an old woman that I was close to and admired. She was hurt and I was ashamed but still, for reasons mysterious to me, angry. There was a boy with some variant of Down's syndrome who I was also very close with, like a brother who I tried to talk this out with. We were like babies babbling about it. 


The best thing you can do for your loved ones is have a positive attitude, suicide is the worst. I hate to put it that way, because it seems harsh on my father. If like in the novel I was compelled to follow in his footsteps then any suicide attempt on my part would be foiled and failed. and my God, if my life now is difficult and complicated imagine how it would be after a failed suicide attempt.


Also in my novel Deb kills the boar. In real life I can't or haven't yet been able to bring myself to kill anything. Though I do on occasion eat meat. I am a realistic person I think. The blood and gore factor can not be erased in real life and therefore a person like myself is going to have a hard time killing a boar. And by the same token herself. My dad is not a realistic person. He doesn't have an aptitude it seems for a practical thinking of things through. This always annoys me. If he had thought things through in a practical way he would never have jumped out the window.


You know what though? What? I'll tell you what: anger is a great motivation for suicide, especially anger at God or Life. That's the seed I have. The seed of anger. Because I'm locked out. Locked out of my own apartment. Another dream image. There are other people in the building celebrating their apartments but I don't want to ask them to let me in.


And I don't have a positive practical vision of my old age. At 48 I still have a young person's goals: to publish my first novel, to build a house, build a career, see my children prosper. Our community here in Middlebury is held up by a few amazing people in their 60's and 70's. No one knows what the Town Hall Theater would do without Doug or what would happen to Maiden Vermont without Lindi. For myself it looks like I won't have enough money to stay alive past the time that I am physically able to work hard. But who knows I could get lucky. I saw a turkey yesterday.


I have been missing my old friend, poet and painter Marc. He also had an "attempt" in his history. No doubt about it, hitting bottom is tragic an should be avoided. He went to the loony bin, whole bit. I miss him now because of an old joke we had. I was going through a very hard time post second divorce when I met him. Then just when I thought things couldn't get any worse my car caught on fire with most of my possessions inside. I did have comprehensive insurance at the time and was making a lot of phone calls to the insurance agency. Their compassionate response was always, "I'm sorry to hear that Ms. Eckles" So from then on whenever I had a rather large complaint he would say, "I'm sorry to hear that Ms. Eckles" If he were still around I could tell him of my real estate "setback" and he could say you know what. Damn the guy used to even be a real estate agent, he could have helped me avoid this fiasco. But in truth we weren't talking so often that he would have known what was going on with me. We got together about once per year since I moved to Middlebury.


It's 7:00 a.m. and time for me to go. It looks like I have a new fan on my blog, she liked the "aggressive woman" post. So that's a nice way to start the day.


Xo A

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