I thought I had a meeting after school today. As I was walking through the school to check on where the meeting was and if we were even having it, I walked past a window. Immediately, I glanced outside, saw a cloud that was building itself, huge half-cirlces of vaporous water condensing into half moons of boiling, bubbling beauty.
For a moment, I imagined a child laying on his back, blowing into the sky, his breath pushing up the recess of the cloud, inflating its edges. It was almost like dreaming of a someone blowing into a bubble wand and clouds unfurling from the fluted edges.
I am stuck in Wednesday, stuck in this moment in which I am about to wrap up the year but am still trying to work. I am stuck at this moment when I am supposed to be practicing the seniors’ names for graduation but I’m finally drawn to the keyboard and know that I must put something on the screen/page and just let the words unravel.
I am dreaming about today, dreaming about the hours that pass beyond the circle of twelve hours and seven days and fifty-two weeks and twelve months. I am dreaming about the here and now, this moment in which I am fully replete with myself and the lines that border my life are no longer static and with just a little pushing, I can feel the edges push away from me.
The year is closing. The hours of exhaustion are falling away from me and I am dreaming in stories now. I am ready to return to The Pear Tree House/Polishing the Bones one more time. I can feel the poetry ready to be written….if I can just get past these last couple of days, through these last hours that are still contained in the parabola of clocks and bell curves.
I have had three days of guest speakers, three days when I have stood to the side and learned from others and watched my students’ faces as they learned from someone other than myself.
I have had three days to start reconnecting with myself. I have finished the first book of the summer (reading I mean). I’m knee deep into another. I have watched the first movie of the summer and fallen in love all over again.
Don’t worry, Pat, you’re still my number one.
I actually have sixteen days until summer vacation. Next week, on Friday, my students will leave my class for the last time. They do not have to take my exam. They are free.
I am dreaming about hiking paths, of ten mile walks. I am dreaming of long mornings spent reading, of hours spent on my porch swing pendulating between north and south, between here and now, between page one and page two.
I am dreaming of my world colliding with each of my children’s. My son has found an Eagle Scout project he wants to complete (Thank you Big Daddy). I will be taking my son to universities and colleges this summer, introducing him to a world he will start to inhabit in a year? Possibly three?
I will be taking my daughter to New York.
I will take myself to the Appalachian Trail.
I will walk down long paths I have dreamed about and will write a sestina about leaving bootprints while finding myself. I will edit my poetry and will learn more on editing my own poetry and I will gather my courage in both hands and I will write and write and write.
And then I will submit and submit and submit. I know that by the end of the summer I will likely hear from The New Yorker. I am praying for an acceptance. I am waiting for a rejection.
Either way, I have won.
I stared at clouds today and daydreamt about a child blowing at the sky and inflating the clouds. A peaceful moment of verse that hasn’t been written but itches to come out of my fingertips.
Right now, though, I think I’ll have something to drink. Grab a book. Read. Maybe curl up with the dog. If not, I’ll tell my family I love them and dream about clouds, hiking trails, words, books, and long summer days.