While Jim is away, roam from room to room, looking for the right place, the right moment.
Move the stereo from the living room to the bedroom to a small room, under the sink because today Bach should heard this way, just to know what Bach sounds like under the sink.
Read the paper in the studio, or the living room, in the nook above the bed, scribbling all over the pages and watching them drift to the floor like deflated zeppelins.
Follow the sunlight with a coffee cup and the smile of a dog that knows only simple joys. Follow every dust mote. Follow every thought, in hopes that it would lead to a clarification of some event years ago.
Stretch in one room, then another, at last the hall, but there is no wide enough space for the body's attempts at self-improvement. Attempt implies possible failure.
All of this—even the stereo under the sink—leads to writing, in one way or another. . . .
Write anywhere, or nowhere, depending on whim. With paper, on the back of a grocery list, on a laptop perched precariously on a pile of books. On an old trunk pulled out before the sofa, with a cup of Earl Grey tea. In the hallway, because it is dark; or in a single pane of light on the floor, because it is dark. In a nook overlooking water; the ducklings in the canal are metaphors for ideas, playful, rippling the surface when they vanish or emerge, and finally so vulnerable to disaster, to a gull’s adult snipe. Or with the blinds drawn, because of that gull, the noises of the street, the yelling at the corner. . . .
Answer the images that come, or else. Follow them, wherever they may want to go. . . .
Or else I have not evolved, beyond the pleasure of fanciful expulsion, only said, tongue-in-cheek, Get thee, idea, to your bed. . . .
Or else I am only a dreamer, living like a homeless woman on phrases and images scribbled on post-its and scraps of newspaper, a pack-rat of promises and hopes.