Monday, July 28, 2008


My marriage as I write this is exactly one year and one week old... almost to the minute, but I would have to check the time signature on the pictures to be sure... and I have finally, if only for a minute, found myself floating on the tranquil and serene waters of life. Life is so good, so sweet, and so gentle that my dreams have stilled and become boring. Take this vignette; back home after three days on the river, which I will tell you about (maybe) and asleep before the next work day I dreamed nonstop about interpreters floating in canoes interpreting into the air.

I understand, on the surface it might seem interesting, it was even a little ghostly, but the dream was merely an intersection of my two days, a day after canoeing to be followed by a day back at work, and nothing more. ...not even (excuse the pun) an interpretation of events. Each interpreter sat in their own canoe indifferent to the current drifting their craft about. It was a traitorous overlap, two transparent days spinning like an eddy in my brain. It was eerie, I mean, who the fuck were they interpreting to? but it was not eerie enough to keep from tossing awake with boredom. All night.

Last night I dreamt I was looking at a list. That's all. I was looking at a list, and I was supposed to pack the things on the list because out the door behind me were dragons and lollipop trees but I kept reading the list, reading the list, insomnolent with impatience. Where are my dreams? If my life is milk and honey will my dreams wither away into mediocrity?

Of course, you can bet you can't count on being content. Eventually someone, perhaps even me, somehow, will start up with their suffering and I will be miffed that I'd been lulled into a false sense of security in a dangerously tentative world. The existential abyss will yawn open and I will swoon on its precipice.

Meanwhile, life, since it is not busy unraveling, is good. Yesterday Clark and I went to a friends wedding out in Hood River and since there doesn't seem to be and danger on the horizon I was convinced by both Clark and Anita to wear an scandalous dress. YOU WON'T LOOK LIKE THAT WHEN YOU ARE 80, BUT YOU WILL BE WISHING YOU HAD WORN THE DRESS IF YOU DON'T, AND IF YOU DO, YOU WONT BE SITTING AROUND REGRETTING THAT YOU DID.

So I did.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hooray the family

We were in Seattle and that was fun. My favorite part was sleeping and my other favorite part was throwing sticks for Owen in Lake Washington just a few steep blocks from my uncle's house, and my other favorite part was making pesto from the basil growing in my yard. Oh, and of course, the family.

We came home to a rushed week, a hugely active week and I feel guilty for sitting down if I do nothing more while sitting then breathe. Sunday night my sister-in-law Anita moved in for a few weeks. My mom and Lee stayed the night over. Monday Owen went to the vet and came home neutered. He was so so drugged up on pain medication ...which is a $24 option, wtf? it should be illegal to perform surgery on an animal and opt to not give them pain medication...(what was I saying?) oh! so drugged that even propped on his feet his forehead dragged on the ground. The next morning he was his normal springy self, no less a man I told him.

Now it is mid-week and after two days off from my running schedule to massage a pulling, tearing, wretched hamstring I was on my feet at 4am to run 18 miles, that hamstring willing I was home to kiss my husband as he left for work, and tomorrow we'll both be up at 3am to be on the road at 4am to make our way to the John Day river to spend our first anniversary in the river canyon for four days.

The best part is always the sleep.

Sunday, July 06, 2008


My neighborhood is dark and well-treed. There are almost no lights through these streets and the sidewalks are, in places, buckled with old roots. I don't know these out-croppings; though I run these streets, my knowledge is not anatomical. But I can't NOT think these dreamy thoughts: how I am asleep and dreaming upright on my legs because I know the ground is jutting, warped and yawning under me in the dark and I have no expectations of where then my feet will find me...

...not like when you slam down on the landing because you thought there was an extra stair left... the opposite of that like you float along without needing to know where the ground will be and therefor the ground is where it always was and then you too are where you are meant to be and, AHA it is like that running dream, you know?

Out of the neighborhood now I am running along better lit streets with sidewalks as flat and smooth as glass. I have left the dark streets behind confident that I KNOW EVERYTHING THERE IS TO KNOW ABOUT RUNNING BLINDLY. The very moment I tuck the thought away my foot catches on the opened umbrella of a dandelion seed JUST LAYING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE SIDEWALK and suddenly, after years and years and years of running down dark rutted streets, I trip. I fall and I die.

No, just kidding. I fall, like really fall, hard skittering and roll like a burrito (that is to say, efficiently) so that I am surprised to sit upright and disappointed that there is only a few small droplets of blood on my elbow... and then I run. I run because everytime I think I know everything, or anything even, I realize on the skid that I don't know anything at all. In all my years of running, leaping boulders and curbs, I've never ever fallen till I thought I thought I knew. I'll say imprecisely, I don't know a damn thing. And this is a hard lesson for a girl whose first words were a defiant scream: I KNOW!

So I get up and I run like blood is flowing like the Rubicon and I run as if anger would be irrelevant and I run and I run while in my mind the blood gushing down my arm and down my leg washes away every moment that passes in its torrents.

And it works for me while, really, the tiny droplet of blood on my elbow is already coagulated, scabbed and healed by the time I get home.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

1000 dollar water bill

I ran my requisite miles for today, which was fifteen but just to get home I rounded up a quarter mile or so. It was cool out compared to last week when I ran 13.38 with the sun shining down 167 degrees. Lucky for me, that day Clark rode his bicycle along side carrying a riding crop, several bottles of water and concentrated electrolytes tasting like pure sweat. Eventually the water got so hot in its bottle, worsening, if possible, the taste of the electrolyte concentrate that I just stopped drinking and started talking about the West Virginian path I found myself now on, 1977 mid-fall. It was clearly autumn because I was not sweating any longer, my skin chill. It occurred to me I should ask Clark if I was still making sense and he thrust the hot icky bottle of yucky water at me. Last week I survived, recovered panting in Owen's tiny 4' kiddy-pool. This week I survived in much, much better condition, even without an escort.

I am closing in on one whole year of matrimony. I still have not posted except briefly about my wedding and honeymoon, and I guess now I never will. The -1 year calendar has been on my mind a lot lately, passing as it does day by day, a year ago. Memory, I want to pocket those memories but they are most poignant where they are, where I find them. I just stare and stare at this years volunteer sunflowers. I once heard a stand-up comedian say he kept his extensive collection of seashells on beaches around the world and I was like YEAH! Some days when I flip through my checkbook, or drive across the river north I feel electrocuted and seven-dimensional. Time is wild and ravenous. The tunnel west still kills me. A scrub brush hollow under the arch of its branches, the color of brick, ozone, tin, queen anne's lace. I love my scars so much. Next time someone cooks me the best meal I have ever eaten I am going to thrust my hand into the fire so it will be written on my body.

This year (through today) I have run 645.48 miles and I plan to run at least another 600 miles between now and October before the marathon. I should be running with both photo ID, because I am proven neither wise or safe about running in the heat, and a pocket full of seashells and sunflower seeds to scatter as I go.


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