not dead yet

no matter how depressing circumstances can become, there is something that always cheers me up: i am not dead yet. this may seem morbid. i assure you, it puts me in a better mood right away.

what infinite circumstances brought me to this moment, shuffling and tapping the edge of printed sheets of paper that won’t mean anything tomorrow, attaching them to a clipboard invented by people i will never meet. i wear pieces of metal that mean things i can’t explain.

by my hand there is a napkin in the shape of a red valentine’s heart, perfect, symmetrical. i crushed it inadvertently before i could bring it back to my desk and tape it up, to cheer myself. it looks like i was angry, but really it was a default reaction of fingers and pressure and the whole thing was so flimsy.

we are so flimsy.

i tugged wet dark clothes from washer into dryer last night, smelling damp, smelling clean, smelling fibers woven in patterns i can think about but not replicate; again i felt the heft of chad’s clean jeans and the familiar size and shape of my own, smaller garments; six years ago to the moment i had not even dreamed his face.

and i like small lizards, the ones that live on our porch in the summer, that sit motionless for hours on my abandoned sandal, queens of tiny worlds. i still don’t know their names but does that mean i like them any less?

believe me when i say i am better than yesterday, and that all i need to do is think of the impermanence and absurdity of life to smile again.

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I acknowledge that I live and work on stolen Cowlitz, Clackamas, Atfalati, and Kalapuya land.
I give respect and reverence to those who came before me.