Friday, May 14, 2010
That much I know for sure.
What I don't know yet is what I'll be reading. Not precisely, not yet. Though I think I'll begin with these words from Good People, the novel for adults that I've been working on all these many months.
The baby is missing. The baby is not where I had left her—checked the rope and strapped her in, pulled my weight into the branch above, and said out loud, This is good and nice and sturdy. I had nudged her high and sung to her, True, true, the sky is blue, and she smelled like baby. There is not one single other thing that smells like baby, that cheeks against your cheek like the cheek of a baby. I had kissed her. I had promised, I am coming right back, Baby.
There was a pluming plane overhead. Two white trails of smoke, and a second plane—smaller, chasing. I had wanted a blanket so that I might lie nearby, so that all afternoon it would be Baby in her swing and me on the spine of the earth below, watching the ants in their jungled green, waiting for the red-tailed hawks to slice the plumes from the past of the planes. It is twenty-eight steps to the back door, which is red because I’d painted it red, and it is nine steps to the downstairs closet, but I’d forgotten: I’d left the blanket upstairs, in the trunk beneath the bed, beneath the hooked rug Mama was working when she passed, beneath Mama’s collection of hats. There are thirteen steps up, and there are thirteen steps down, and when I opened the red door where the brush strokes had dried rough around the brass plate, Baby was missing.