Thursday, January 11, 2018

The Ashes of 1989

My family moved into this house the summer of 2015. It was built sometime during the '70s. You can tell this by the browns-and-tans-only color scheme that permeates the place, and the fact that the bedroom fans have no light fixtures. Weird.

Somehow, over the course of our stay here, our house has admitted dozens of wasps, spiders, roaches, a bat, and the freezing temperatures of winter. We've never been able to figure out where the wasps come from or how they get in (we find at least two a day in summer), or why it's unreasonably difficult to heat the living room, even accounting for the vaulted ceilings. It's just part of living in a big house, we've said. It's just that time of year, the bugs just want to get warm/cool, we've said. Then tonight, the wind howled down the chimney so fiercely that the glass gates rattled. 

"That can't be right, the flue's closed... isn't it?"

When my mom checked, she said, "Wow, there's a lot of dead spiders in here. It's filthy, full of old, burned wood, ashes, and wasp carcassas. I guess this is how they've been getting in: your flue's been open for two years."

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The song that initially drew my attention to the now well-established bird theme is changing again. All the songs that I originally chose to work on last year have opened up to reveal they were just place-holders for the songs underneath that are surfacing now. I can't play them the way I used to when they were new, but they aren't set either. One changes, I go okay, leave it alone, focus on a different one; it becomes the passion piece that gets all my attention, then I leave it alone, cycle back to the other one, and it's changed again because the way I left it is unsatisfying: it doesn't say the right thing, doesn't have enough travel in it (too stationary), or has so much movement in it, I get distracted. At least the space I work in is starting to take shape. That shape is rectangles; I'm surrounded by them. Literally. 

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