Random flow of thoughts this morning…
Starting with a summer renga whose first haiku I wrote:
Birds, chirping their song
of summer’s immanence —
joy flutters my heart
as leaves rustle in the wind
like a spirit taking form.
I learned to ice skate as a child,
but my ankles were too weak.
I was always envious of the Langes
boys got to wear, with ankle support
and plenty of toe room.
Another day… another week. Gabriel “graduates” from sixth grade this week.
I remember my sixth grade dance. I was only just becoming part of the pack, and Richard Poitras, the most popular boy in our grade, had turned his eye on me. Not because I was excruciatingly beautiful or brilliant, but because, I suspect, of a grudging respect. I was good at dodge ball, and one of the few in my class that would repeatedly catch his throws. And I kicked him in the balls, once (it was not intentional), and while he was rolling around on the ground, cupping his precious testes and writhing in pain, he was like a wounded beast, angry and wild (wanting to inflict pain in turn, but could not). Trepidatiously, I crept closer, repeating how sorry I was that he hurt (wounding his balls was certainly the *last* thing I had in mind). I wanted him so fiercely that I could taste it. The most I got, eventually, was a kiss. He was like a wild animal… beautiful, sleek, temperamental, primal. We parted ways at the end of the year, going on to different schools but I had news of him occasionally. In the end I lost touch entirely, the last rumor I’d heard was that his sharp instincts had finally failed him, and that he was crushed on his motorcycle while trying to pass a big rig on the right side in the Lafontaine Tunnel. Caught between a rock and a hard place. I’d always hoped that it was untrue.