family in athens THE GANG

Don’t worry, this won’t be a complaining post. Au contraire! Just a statement from a wounded child/mother, reflecting on a life of poor communication on her part.  I had to put my blind/deaf cat (who trusted me)  down on Tuesday, and the last pet I had put down was my pet dog of many years, Gracie. At that time my son made a special trip to town to help comfort me. He held her in the vet’s outbuilding while “she went to sleep.” I was there, too, stroking her.  She trusted me, too, but I still wonder if it wasn’t too soon.  Much earlier, while living with his father, he had called long-distance to tell me that they were having to  put our family dog Buttons down, and he just wanted to let me know. I think those are two of my warmest memories.

After a life of poor or too-late communication, one grows even rustier at it.  One of the favorite lines from my book Time Wrinkles is something like  “I found a loudspeaker in my crib and just realized  it doesn’t work.”

About Nan Mykel

I used to think I would be a child prodigy, but then I got old. Formerly I had fantasies of rubbing elbows with cultural and academic leaders but that did not come to pass because I did not become a cultural or academic leader or any other kind of leader, for that matter. I am not even an "Alpha Dog," a term learned from a friend who had to become "Alpha Dog" in order to influence her own pet. (When gazes lock, she never looks away.) For years I expected to become a published author, but in passing I could not avoid the fact that I had little to contribute to the world's bulging dumpsters. I'm embarrassed to report that I also considered my primary process artistic productions powerful, rather than mildly neurotic. Which is not to say that I disrespect myself, only that I am beginning to doubt my potential for making a mark on the world. If I focus on strict self discipline I may be able to keep my garbage removed on a weekly basis, to keep the kitty box changed, the clothes cleaned, the dog watered, fed and walked, but that just catches me up to the starting mark again. When writing I physically grapple with words, wrestling them from their indifference into attempted chunks of awareness. I sit heavily on my chair; I breathe in artificially cooled air; my ear drums note the tap tap of the keyboard and the steady uninterrupted sound of the air conditioner, What is that sound? The roar of the ocean from 30 yards away...Inside, my thoughts are are balls in an electronic game machine, bouncing hither and yon from lever to lever. I am a little grim and intent until I recall a dream related by a black man in the prison where I once worked. He said that when he was a small boy, back home, he dreamed he was standing on his front porch pissing, and that he suddenly found himself pissing stars...
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3 Responses to HAPPY MOTHERS DAY?

  1. Sallie Carpentier says:

    Oh Mom!! So sorry to hear about Lucky…truly. he trusted you to take care of him, and you did, to the end.
    Hey look! I can type a comment!! I wonder why..maybe because I’m doing it on my phone. When I’m on my comouter, it won’t let me reply. Lucky was very Lucky to have you, as are we all!


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