Friday, April 12, 2013

The brain should be treated like a fine machine. And PS: there is nothing more cliche than constantly writing about dead parents

I have cried all yesterday and all today. I took an allergy pill to clear up my eyes for the dissertation proposal defense. Then I went back to crying. I cried for that 1974 video, I cried for your 25 year old faces- my GOD how can anyone's parents look so young. And I cried for me.

Whatever ravaged my mother's mind with sharp teeth, whatever species of thing lodged itself and grew inside my father's brain, I have cried for those things for two days without stopping (reprieve for the proposal defense. I told the committee I was nervous and jittery and had allergies). I have cried for two days like a stupid baby, crying against whatever took hold of the both of them and took them away from me.

I'm not a pretty cryer. Mary Ingalls on Little House On The Prairie, now SHE was a beautiful cryer. But I sob until I hiccup and break out in rashy blotches. I can only see through slits in my eyes. I get that puffy eye thing from my mother.

I found an orphaned space through the grainy film where nothing exists but me and my pigtails, my newborn sister, and the merry-go-round. I don't understand where the two of you went- what crevices of the mind you crawled into and decorated the walls and put on some records and made yourselves at home and goddamn-who-cares who's out there knocking on the door.

I have always written to make sense of my world, but words fail me now. The failures and horrors of a routine daily life aren't unique enough to be memorialized, even through an exquisite turn of phrase. Everyone dies, lots of people go crazy, it's not special enough to be paid a great deal of attention to.

YOU died at quarter to midnight on a Friday and the funeral home van backed up to the front porch and wheeled your body outside. Unceremoniously, as they say.
YOU folded yourself up until you were the perfect size to fit yourself inside your mind and you slid into those mazes where no one could ever hope to follow and it was warm and quiet and you withered away from the outside in.

And goddamn guess who's knocking at the door now?