Wednesday, May 11, 2011
eyes wide shut
Do you need some help? the lady had gotten out of her car and walked over the grass toward Sophie and me. Sophie lay twitching in the sun, her face in my lap, her seizure as sudden as usual, a toppling over from where she sat cross-legged and then a long, low groan as her arms and legs stiffened and jerked and I cradled her as best I could thinking there were grass stains on her and on me and still I waved to Oliver as he hit tennis balls with his teacher. It's all right, I said to the lady, she has them all the time. And I turned my head away from Sophie and up toward her, I'm used to it, smiling reassuringly at her broad, concerned face. The hem of her dress rested on Sophie's staring face, it was purple and white and cheap. Thank you, though, thank you so much for asking, I added, and turned my face back to Sophie. She turned then and left, pulling her car out into the street and I felt that old dread descend upon me, the dread of questions and uncertainty, the resignation, the pulling away from now, movement down an endless path. Tonight, I lay in bed with Sophie, wide awake, her hands clammy, her eyes open, her brain scrambled. I stroked the hair off her face and rubbed her temples: I willed the energy of my desire into her head, I closed my eyes.