Sometimes I remember where I have been so vividly: the bedrooms and living rooms of my childhood, the libraries of my adolescence, the places I have been in the past year. The colors swirl and collect in muted vibrancy. Like old pictures tinning. I bring them back in order to see if I can still make sense of the meaning. And I call to them like a boatman drops a sinker to measure the depth of the water. An exercise from an exorcism.
After a year, I am back at the Pocahontas Arms. It feels like ten. Work is causing a perpetual furrow of my brow. Secretly, I have never been good with multi-tasking, especially not cities. But I put on an impressive show about it. I think about last year, in the apartment above this one. The rats in the alley while I waited on the steps for the girl wrapped in a towel. I remember aimlessly wandering the noodle houses of Flushing. “When autumn leaves fall, I just think about you.” I remember being despondent, but for a different reason.
Friday the 13th, the day before my eviction, I thought of the maudlin books that were popular among my peers. In grade school? It must have been, I remember the library. These terrible teen romance novels about falling in love with car crash victims and leukemia patients. Books about teenagers dying. I never read them, I thought the concept to be mawkish.
It was there, at the doctor’s office, I thought myself to be too young for cancer yet too old to be Lurlene McDaniel novel. Heredity, how you cheat me. They wrote a referral for an ultrasound and I remember how they thought I had leukemia as a baby.
I read articles on processes and treatments. I wonder how I will be able to work. My ex lover from ten years prior sends me letters, asking me if I am sleeping/eating well, recommending herbs and new age therapies. In truth, we are putting the cart before the horse, planning for what is unclear. And I am avoidant. I use my new found homelessness rationalize my lack of interest in a follow-up appointment. At this point, after the past five years, I just don’t care what happens next.