Archive | City Matters

Road to Nowhere

I came back to Brooklyn Tuesday night and it’s been terrible. So terrible, in fact, that even as I type this I feel unsure I’ll ever write anything worth reading again. My life force is as drained as I’d feared it would be when I left the wilds of Truro for the metagrid that is New York City–so drained, in fact, that I can’t spare any energy to dress up this fact.

Most of the drive was fine. Once Grace accepted we really were going to leave the place that felt more like home than our home, she capitulated completely and walked into her carrier herself, barely mewed as we drove through Cape Cod foliage and more and more buildings blocked the horizon. Our mutual silence loomed. Continue Reading →

First and Forest

When I came to Truro, it was to be for a month. I had put the word out among my extended circle that I was looking to live in rural New England in September, and had rolled my eyes as I’d done so. Who’d be willing to lend me their empty house wily-nily for four weeks?

I had gall.

But as is often the case when life really needs to change, that gall paid off. A friend from high school—really, someone I liked but had never known very well—got in touch through Facebook, and the next thing I knew Grace and I were hurtling to Truro in a car full of cat food, thin cotton dresses, and platform shoes.

That’s who I was on September 7. Tired eyes, disappointed smiles, trailing glamour like yesterday’s big idea. Grief-stricken about the hateful ignorance validated by the Trussian Oligarchy. Grief-stricken about who I no longer was. Continue Reading →

There You Are

My routine this fall: Watch the sunrise with the seagulls and the seals, then walk into the dunes. For the rest of the morning, write. Afterward walk into the woods and sometimes go thrifting, naming my finds consolation prizes or rewards depending on the day’s work. From then, bid the sun farewell from a west-facing beach, and make dinner from fisheries and farmstands in the area. Star-gazing from the hammock beneath the birch trees, and asleep by 9:30, tucked in with a grey-gold permakitten purring at my feet. This has been my perfect life, and it has turned me into the space crone mermaid of my dreams.

Last night I was telling a dear friend in Brooklyn about how sad I’ll be to leave the Cape next week. “I’m running out of supplies,” I told her. “I’m on my last bag of Oslo Coffee beans and down to my last bottle of vitamins. I’m even running out of wine. But it’s so hard to imagine not being able to run to the sea as soon as I wake. And how will I get unstuck in my writing when I can’t walk in the woods to clear my head?” “Spend this last week just soaking it all up,” she said. “It will be the best week of your life.” She is an artist and knows how to be inside the moment while also storing it for her paintings and drawings. I was grateful for her glorious plan, and grateful for the reminder of why I love New York City so much. It is there–scratch that, it is here–that I find my people one way or another. What’s most beautiful: once you find kindred spirits, they’re inside you wherever you go, whether they be tree spirits or seal spirits or loudmouth millennial spirits. Love is love.

Art credit: Detail from a Marlene Frontera drawing. Photo: me.

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy