Grandma is thinking of foreheads.  Grandma is thinking about fate, and puppies, light and fog.  And she’s contemplating her feeling that something is going on in the club, something about ears or tails or championships or daffodils or babies.  Because there’s nothing at all to write about, nothing.

Conflagrations in Manhattan and Tikrit, the gorgeous ravines of the French Alps strewn with body pieces and plane parts and the ravaged soul of the guy who scattered them there.  Will the search parties be able to pick up every jagged piece of metal, every iPhone and eyeball?  And when they’re finished, will the spring be Arab spring again or will there be body parts strewn across the deserts and the oases and dark little towns huddled everywhere in the sand?  Will atrocities be committed according to the shards of religious words scattered in the valleys and across the mountaintops?  Will flowers ever grow there again?  Anywhere again?

My children went with their classmates to l’école de neige in those mountains, a long time ago.  The chef made blood sausages for them and their classmates, which they threw out the windows.  Then they fled to their rooms where they cried for their mamans and papas and were deprived of the chocolate packed for them at home that the Socialist monitors took from their hands and redistributed.

A forehead that looks like exposed brain.  Lobes pushing to be free, or dragging toward the ground exhausted.  Filling a water bowl for a dog.  My dogs like the water that comes from the tank, purified and cold as ice.  Put ice cubes in a bowl of tap water and they play with them, bat at the bowl, spread the water to the floorboards where it disappears and ends up back in Rock Creek from whence it came.  Capitol water, capital water, full of bitterness and confusion, brains twisted, bad brains, brain cabals and trysts, brain clubs (“hey, yours is twisted just like mine!”), clans hiding in dugouts beneath the Dome.

Yes, something is going on.  What it is ain’t entirely clear.  There’s a man with a gun over there.  The stitches refuse to form, fibers twist and go astray, awry, awful.   Fire in lower Manhattan, near my children, a building collapses like my daughter’s building, everybody out fast, leave the toys and the cribs and the new appliances.  And there’s another one, and another, and another.

One of us is going to a place with palm trees, where the sun goes down on the wrong side.  There are flowers there all the time.  The rest of us are staying put.


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