22 March 2013


In Clover
Stainless steel and spotlights.
Artist:  Cornelia Erdemann
The ground is not solid here. Literally and figuratively it shifts beneath me. There are at least 20 mature trees on the lot and I'm told it is the vast root system supporting so many trees that makes the ground unstable. When I step on the front lawn it feels like the land is grabbing at me, like I might be swallowed by the yard before I reach the sidewalk.

Conversation is rare lately. No one calls. No one returns my calls. No one stops by. It's not me; there's very little vehicular traffic and no pedestrian traffic on my street. (Pointless to sit on the porch.) No one is stopping by to see anyone. Perhaps no one is calling anyone either.

I'm lonely but have no desire to visit with most of the people I've met here. The ground is so shaky:  when they speak their words conform to local social and religious conventions, i.e., they are fine, their family is fine, and God is good, but there's so little spark or warmth, I wonder what's really going on with them.

Sometimes, what's really going on leaks between the lines:  they are trying to figure me out, digging for information. It's impolite to just ask what you want to know. The words wind around, sprinkled liberally with tea-cup titters and not much eye contact. It feels sneaky sometimes, like a set up. Like walking on shaky ground.