Tuesday, February 1, 2011

tuning the house to the key of c


The house is messy. Cat hair and general child detritus covering the floor. There are blocks on the kitchen table and a scattered pile of receipts littering the counter. I left a pile of clean clothes on the bed two days ago. They are still there. I can't look at the dust on the bathroom faucets without feeling a rising quease of guilt. Everywhere I look there is something to be done, to be faced, to be conquered, to be cleaned.

This, reaping the rewards of a January packed with little distractions and major diversions: sickness and returning maladies and the general graffiti of everyday life that stops a person from focusing on necessary tasks.

It's February first and I'm standing in the kitchen, turning in circles, wondering where to start. A deep breath and I can hear Alice coming down the stairs. She is calling for me, asking that we pull out her crayons to color. Her footsteps are echoed and returned around the house: a thump and rumble in the walls, the windows shaking ever-so-slightly. As the echo quiets, there's a small sound like a whistle, something musical and tremulous. It continues for several seconds, welcoming Alice into the kitchen with me. I know what it is, but it's the first time I've really listened to it. Three small colored plates hang on the wall over the dining room table. They are suspended on plate racks with small brass springs. It is these springs that vibrate with each movement in the house, echo with the walls and floors, call out every action we take beneath this roof. They sound out of tune.

I need to fix that.


ixBeths said...

This is lovely.

Also, I love the word detritus.

ixBeths said...

and two days later, i just want to say how much better my day begins when there is a new post from you. :)


Rainyday said...

Sounds like the same things taking over my place. It's exhausting.
Good luck tuning those plates!