Wednesday, January 07, 2009

52 More Minutes

I had a disquieting morning, and the rest of the day unfurled accordingly. It's Wednesday, which is the day I've set aside for reading creative nonfiction (oh, be quiet; I told you I was organizing my reading), and I chose at random the essay "Mirrorings," by the late Lucy Grealy. I don't know why the anthology I was reading from didn't mention that this was the essay she later expanded into her now-famous Autobiography of a Face, but it didn't.

Well, hell. I don't think I've ever read something that required me to take a break every few pages due to excessive emotional reaction. I experienced an acute feeling of claustrophobia, as if it were impossible to escape from the writer's imperfect face. A feeling, of course, which mirrors Grealy's own. The book is still open on my bed, where I left it with three pages to go.

Afterwards, I headed to my desk to check the news and saw yet another photograph of a dead Palestinian child. I don't have the heart to post it here or even to link to it, but what is there, really, to say? It's a picture of a child who died violently and who looked like she died violently. Even learning that Hamas is known to stage photos didn't take the edge off. Staging or no, the child is dead. Many children are dead. I don't know enough to state an opinion either way, but at this point isn't everyone at fault?

I guess the next ten hours could have been ones that resulted in what other people describe as a series of hug-your-kids-tight epiphanies, but I was just pissed out of my mind all day. Impatient with the girls, with myself, with older women turning left on El Camino. I sneered at the crumbs on the table, the dolls in the wrong place, the soup that wasn't hot enough, the clatter that button-fly jeans produce while spinning in the dryer.

It's 11:08 p.m. now, and the good news is that I refuse to carry this with me into tomorrow. The next 52 minutes, though, are going to feel like a long, long time.

1 comment:

COACHmickey said...

The smarts not to carry the negatives into the next day is a glacial accomplishment..