Posts Tagged ‘Fortunes’

lo it is written

December 28th, 2011    -    12 Comments

I’m posting this early because everyone likes to have their fortune told.

You will bribe her with french fries
storm the gates of the forbidden
amassing a mortuary
of happy meal toys
and extra ketchup packets.
Join the zoo, the aquarium,
and the natural history museum,
surrendering the educational mission
for another stuffed animal at the gift shop.
Buy an army of Barbies.
Throw good money after bad.
Throw caution.
Throw fits.
Ante up to the American Girls.
One hundred dollars a pop.
Thank heaven for doting relatives.
You will overspend on school fundraisers
for mixed nuts, note cards, and candy
packed eight lousy pieces to the box.
Buy two cases of girl scout cookies
enough to enter winning territory
for a beach towel she’ll never use.
You will overpraise recklessly,
overjudge relentlessly,
underestimate entirely.
Give in on the cell phone.
And the next.
Awaiting her text.
You will go overboard at Christmas,
blow out Hanukkah,
host the birthday party from hell.
You will  exalt in her naptimes.
Cry in the shower.
Bide your time.
Bite your tongue.
Release her to the sleepover.
The trampoline. The mall.
The crush.
Scream your fool head off.
Or worse, or worse, it can always be
You will squander the good days.
You will, you will, you know you will.
You will fail her
and you will forgive her,
failing only to forgive yourself.
You will start over, verily, over again.
As it is written
in the year 2012 AD.

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Sister’s keeper

July 6th, 2009    -    2 Comments

The incandescent Jen Lee asked me to scribble a line or two to introduce her newest collection Fortunes, and so I did, and here they are, almost ready to count and keep for yourself. You will want to keep one for yourself, and you will want to give away a dozen. What we give always comes back to us and thus fortunes multiply.

She returned the favor by giving me more profoundly blank pages of her Don’t Write journal, which has worked a kind of reverse osmosis on me. (Sorry, the magic is sold out.) The empty lines of that book have filled with more unfiltered prose than I ever didn’t write, and I’m looking there to find the finishing stroke for my second book this summer. Reverse osmosis generally takes a lot of pressure and is fairly slow, but it works.

I trust what Jen knows, and even more what she doesn’t, and she told me as much herself:

“My feeling about your book manuscript is that it is already written, somewhere inside you or outside of you. There’s just a good stretch of dictation left for you to take down. The hardest work is the way such projects rewrite us as they are gestating, and eventually born.”

The due date for my labors is Labor Day, naturally, and I’ve no doubt the baby will arrive on schedule. After that, I’ll be free to fall up north, plunging into a golden pile of overdue forgetting. The treasury opens by itself.

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