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Dream Girl

In Writing Group last week, I asked my friends to finish the sentence, "What's true is . . ." over and over.

We were going for repetition, which amounts to something singular, like a hand petting a dog.The same spot is never the same spot. With healing it is the againandagain-ness that equals the one.

Here's what I came up with, sentence starters sort of being like shovels to get deeper. Here is what I came up with-- "What's true . . ." sort of like the breath I take and keep as long as it will last me, when I dive under the water.


What's true is that I paused my shaving this morning to listen closely to Andrea Gibson’s line over the loudspeaker, “Let’s say for the moment I am my type . . ."

What's true is, as soon as she began, a hot sour lagooned in my throat, my eyes, so that the poet's imagery began to blur " . . .let's say I am my dream girl, standing on my own doorstep, waiting for me to open, hand full of water lilies I have rescued from a millionaire’s Monet painting . . .”

And what’s true is, it took me three listenings for me to really hear--for that flower, that painting, that metaphor to leap over the roar of my sorrow-fall. What’s true is that pain is loud, even over the strongest love, even over poetry’s ocean, with all its dolphins, mermaids and sand dollars.

What’s true is that I wanted to step out of my skin most of that day and towel off the truth.

And at the same time, another part of me has been walking around all day wondering, Am I my type? If so, what would I bring myself?  

For this Valentine's day, my only plan is to try to imagine myself from myself, instead of you. And if I have to picture what I am doing (what my doing looks like to someone) that I picture it from my grandmother's artist eyes, or from my five year old self''s chocolate-smeared mouth, that became a fourteen year old's broken, horse-loving  heart.

What's true is, I have never done this before.

What's true is, I think this might be the only thing left to do.


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