Monday, September 11, 2006


We tend to talk about it in the historical context in our household. But last night we talked about the more personal effects and memories.

The sunlight on his face in the bus on the ride in. What page he was on in his book. I was foolish enough to think I was going to finish mine - a book that had been confounding me for months - that day. (Of course I didn't know.) The sound of the phone ringing in the apartment building. The fear that the rising smoke, blowing directly toward my office was a threat. What a gorgeous day it was. How every woman who has wailed in confusion and sorrow after a male family member has been in the proximity of a blast flooded my soul - we were all together in one body screaming in different languages. The longest ride home of my life during which we stopped to pick up R's husband: "We don't know if Honey is alive, the least we can do is take care of the one we do know is." The friendliness of the bus driver who drove us in to the station. Where we sat on the bus: right side, a row or two in front of the back doors. The morning light on his face on the ride in. The building we were in front of when he looked up from his book to look at me. What a georgeous day it was. As we parted at the station and I told him, "I love you," and he merely smiled and waved as he walked on: how irritated I was at him. The poster in the train: the xylophonist in bare feet. My thoughts riding in: "Why is it we always wait for a disaster before we do anything?" The yellow blouse-grey skirt combination that I never wore again out of supserstition. How I was going to find a new dentist that morning, after my front desk shift. I hated that my department forced its lackeys to cover the front desk. The confused looks on people's faces in the lobby. I was going to go to an audition that night. How useless my cell phone was. The sound of a second boom. The sight through the rear windshield of black smoke rising in great billows. People driving politely for once. The lady who let us in, so I flashed her a peace sign - she looked very disconcerted; we must have, too. The guy walking down the street wearing a gas mask and no shirt, carrying a brief case. Comic relief. Voices on NPR speculating on who could've done this. The news across the radio of the 4th plane in PA. Were they all going to be falling out of the sky? The awkwardness when I finally got to the apartment and found honey alive - we shouldn't be here, in this universe in this time. Our bodies were in the same space, but our souls were jarred, floating a few feet off center of our bodies. We paced the apartment the remainder of the day, pausing occassionally to hug eachother. I cleaned, vaccumed mostly, like crazy. It was such a beautiful day. Phone calls when they started working. E-mails. The only machines in the sky were military. I cleaned like crazy. I developed a calm: goodness will prevail in the hearts of man. I was even happy. Calling in to the office to tell them I wouldn't return to work for the rest of the day because I felt "sick." (That I felt opressed enough by my employer to fake a sickness on the remainder of that day.) We couldn't eat for the rest of the day. (I vomited what little I had the next morning when it was clear it was not all a dream.) What we needed most from TV was more information. What we needed most from TV was a string of sitcoms.

It was such a gorgeous day.

1 comment:

Virginia Gal said...

That was very touching, thank you for sharing.