March 17, 2013

Spring Back

Spring is nearly here. I remembered today a few of the things I love about spring and it's funny that every year I forget and remember again. It's as if winter numbs my mind and makes me forget what I love about the other seasons so I won't feel the loss or longing.

It works. I love winter despite her bleak days and her sometimes-bitterness.

Tonight the frogs were singing in the fog. I drove slow with the windows down, my lights cutting through the swirl of white across the road.

It reminded me of something two decades dead and gone. It reminded me of a boy I knew, Ben, who made me want to run away and join the carnival with him. To sell everything. To surrender to a nomadic life, to give up everything and be dirty and uncertain while there was time to do that.

Time to do that before my back ached or before I had children. Before I understood my own mortality. Before there were mortgages and deadlines and expectations that, when not met at 40, fall like giant redwoods in a forest instead of like dogwood petals on a breeze when you're 20.

Ben said that sometimes he had to sleep with his head on the bathroom sink if nobody would let him sleep in their trailer. And I imagined myself in the fairgrounds bathroom in a town whose name I had forgotten because it followed a string of a dozen towns before it. I imagined how it would be to sleep with my face pressed to the cold enamel of a sink and that was enough for me to smile with only half-regret and touch his hand gently as I said goodbye.

And in the summer was a different boy and a jeep with the top down and Phil Collins blaring out of the speakers and stolen moments of passion by the edge of a quiet lake. And eventually a spot in the bed that I didn't sell for Ben. And times where I would apologize for the passion I felt for this new boy, for the urge I had to devour him whole because wasn't it unseemly for a girl to act that way?

Spring is oblivious to her own wonder.


10 comments :

  1. This is beautiful in every way.

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  2. This is gorjus. Write more gorjus stuff like this, please.

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    Replies
    1. Hey, that happens to be on my to-do list. What a coincidence!

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  3. This is so lovely. And a compelling case for why I need to check my reader more often. Grateful to Sarah for tweeting the link!

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  4. Sooo lovely, Wendy.

    I did once, run away with a boy and briefly live a carny life. That was my first husband. We lived the first eight months of our marriage in a truck camper, towing an ice cream trailer. There was a storm once, the wind was wild, men called to each other through the driving rain as the rides were disassembled and tied down. We all hunkered together the only safe place there was, the concrete-block restrooms. I was the only woman in the men's room, and my husband held me tight...

    Oh! Spring! Yes...

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    1. Paula, young women make such good memories, don't they??

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  5. Wendy,
    Are you on Twitter? AWB posted about your new book on Twitter and FB ; I wanted to let you know. I searched for you on Twitter but did not find anything.

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    1. Debbie, I'm on Twitter: @wendybythesea

      I'll go look!

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