8:52 AM — October 19, Saturday, eleven years ago, you alive, passing up a garage sale, you and Craig together....
It would be Sunday morning about this time when I learned .... I'd left the phone off the hook because Mother would call all hours of the night ... I was the last find out you died before midnight, October 19.
Distance and its evidence — your words. Days, actions, disbelief — the agony a tide receding not.
1: 53 PM — October 19. In real time on this day eleven years ago, you and Craig are together, he hasn't yet left for work, you both deliriously happy.
It is that image I hold in a life now without you, your happiness then
along with those in all the years before, 52 of them together you and I.
Years and months and days: time categorized to make sense of.
Hey Carole, I really did wander over to Trader Joe's without your physicality, thoughts of you as I sauntered. Is smaller than Borders, less enchanting with a warehouse setup and was mobbed, traffic a mess. An announcement came on, saying they were towing cars from Roasters and Toasters.
Roasters, that did it! You and all the coffee fill-ups when it was closer to your place, moved a few blocks north about the time you died, before or after, who knows? That wouldn't have made a difference although no longer a coffee shoppe now a full deli. Even simple changes without you a heartache: "the energy a survivor sits with, in a dark corner, talking..."
There is a white elephant sale close by here tomorrow, October 19, the day you died eleven years ago. Craig would later tell me there was one in Key West near you, one you'd been looking forward to but decided to pass, not feeling well, telling him just hours before. Oh Carole, had I known, I would have warned him, zoomed down to Key West, wrapped you in my arms and gotten you to hospital. Craig didn't understand the implications of your missing the tohotchkes, the big finds. My solace is believing you are together in a wondrous space.
Hi sweetheart, my dearest sister... a love of my life. The supposedly 'oomphy' grocery, Trader Joe's, is opening where the defunct Borders had been, our favorite hangout no more. I imagine we'd pick up there and can see us walking from my house with one of those farty shopping push carts, driving and parking undoubtedly a clusterfuck, also a waste, exercise and cooling fresh air better. We'd be best buddies, aging middlers, oogling, laughing like the trundling yentas we poked fun of on Miami Beach; old friends with shopping carts. The Beach of yesteryear, and we'd think, never us! Well, for all the wrong reasons, it is now not for us — oh Carole, how I miss your exuberance, your love.