Saturday, 28 June 2008

Bye-Bye, bye to all of the noise

I just watched one of the most ridiculously sappy films ever, and cried through most of it. I am one big ball of feelings at the moment. A crushed croissant of emotion.

I went out earlier today, heading to the farmers market. On the way I saw Mr Milne, an old man who sometimes comes into the shop at work. Over the past couple of years I have watched him slowly fading, while the smell of his unwashed self gets stronger. He is a kind man, hard of hearing and easily confused. Often I have wished he wouldn't linger so long in the shop. He is one of those old men who just comes in for a chat and forgets himself, rambling on into one fragmented story after another. I saw him on the street, walking slowly, with his stick. He was looking down and would not have noticed if I walked right past him. But I was thinking of Omi and stopped him to say hello. It took some explaining to make him understand who I was, but finally it clicked. He rambled, telling me about how his father used to tell him not to join the Black Watch because they always get the worst of it. So he joined the RAF instead. And how his wife is in hospital and she'll never come out. "Her brain cells are dying," he said. She has dementia and the last time he went to see her she asked him, "who are you? what are you doing here?"

So I'm sad. I bought beets and radishes and a cucumber as the farmers market. But everywhere I was seeing these old couples, and how their love was like a frail string holding them together as death was beginning to tug them apart.

Last night I had a dream and Omi was in it. I was talking to another woman and Omi was standing behind her, leaning on a stick and looking weak. I remember wishing that the woman would leave so I could attend to my grandmother. And when I woke up I was thinking of her hands and how soft they are, like the skin is is only one layer, made of silk and barely keeping back the warm fountain of her blood.

The flat is an absolute disaster. It's like since I've gotten back from Canada, I've just kind of fallen apart. I am just existing, absorbing too much food and films, just stuffing myself because I feel so lost I wouldn't know where to move even if i could.

I wait. I wait for Opa to call me with news. I wait to see John, who I know will make me laugh. I wait for the feel of his body in the bed, the way my hand will glide over his nearly hairless man-boy chest as I cuddle up to him. I feel so protected when he is here. Not from physical harm - he has more chance of burning down the flat and killing us both than anyone. But from all the bad things in the world. The things that break our hearts and render us helpless with fear. I can't snuggle deep enough into that feeling, and I am petrified that the blanket will be yanked away from me. I worry when he is driving late at night. I worry about the unpredictable drunks that he sometimes has to deal with at work. I worry that something might take him away.

Patrick Watson is playing a song called The Great Escape. It is a wonderful, sad, dreaming song.

Bad day, looking for a way
Oh, looking for the great escape
Gets in his car and drives away
Far from all the things that we are
Puts on a smile and breathes it in
and breathes it out He says
bye-bye, bye to all of the noise
Oh he says bye-bye bye to all of the noise

Hey child, things are looking down,
That’s OK you don’t need to win anyways
Don’t be afraid just eat up all the gray
and it will fade away
Don’t let yourself fall down

Bad day, looking for the great escape
He says bad day, looking for the great escape
On a bad day, looking for the great escape
Great escape

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"bad, sad. Sad Bad. What a sad day dad had." dr. seuss