Less Tethered

5 Apr

My daughter lies down in her bed with sniffles and a cough, a day and a half into her cold.  “Are the two things still up there?” she asks me.  I wait for her to elaborate, but she does not.


“The two things.”

“The two things…” I echo, trailing off.

“The two pillows.”


We sigh. We both sigh.

I smile.

This is the dialogue of a Pinter play. Bursting with meaning, if you’re not tied to the words.

*   *   *   *   *

I am a writer, a poet, a performer. My life is words.

It has been twenty years since I sat day after day for half an hour every morning in the Santa Clara Mission, discovering the indescribable being of self and all, unbound by words, the bones of my bum sinking into a round hard cushion on one of many paths to the unspoken.

*   *   *   *   *

“Ma’am?” There is a woman in the crosswalk behind me, quite close, holding a pamphlet in her outstretched hand in the middle of the road. I look into her face. She smiles. “May I give you this?” she asks.

“Sure,” I reply.

She says nothing more as the paper changes hands. We reach the curb and I turn my way; she turns hers. On the cover of the pamphlet is a young girl with flowers, a young girl who looks very much like my daughter.

“Is there life after death?” the pamphlet title reads. I don’t know. Is there?

There are too many words inside for me to be sure.

*   *   *   *   *

During her road trip last fall, my partner sends me a loving text with the image of a beautifully crafted low stone wall, reminiscent of our year in London.  She then sends this ~

Bourbon Barrells

from her Kentucky bourbon tour.

I reply with x’s and o’s during a frantic brisk walk through the neighborhood, late to pick-up our daughter from after-school care, the air thick with pre-rain humidity. I include this ~

fire hydrant

*   *   *   *   *

Sometimes, words are not my thing.

“I think there is a way to live this life which is less tethered,” she tells me now. She leans forward, punctuates her point with a pretzel, pointing it first and then crunching it between her teeth.

She is full of it.

Full of sense.

Whether or not I let on.

*   *   *   *   *

What if I let go of words?

For a week? For a day? For an hour?

She gives me pause.

What then?


2 Responses to “Less Tethered”

  1. traceybecker April 5, 2013 at 7:30 am #

    You just like to make us think first thing in the morning, don’t you? So many lovely images here. I shall be thinking for quite some time now…

    • rrp69 April 5, 2013 at 7:56 am #

      Tracey! Mmmmm. Maybe I do.
      Or maybe it’s just fun to have a friend on all these little rabbit trails leading in and out of my brain. 😉

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