Posts Tagged ‘Duluth’

I wolfed down the creamy center of the pecan caramel roll I bought at Tobies on Sunday. We stopped there on the way home from Duluth to gas up. And, well, to buy their famous caramel rolls. I forgot to eat mine yesterday, even though it was sitting in big cardboard box with Tobies in forest green letters on the counter next to the Braun coffee brewer.

I was engulfed in the writing. And recovering from being sick all weekend. I thought it was allergies. But now I am wondering if it was a cold.

Duluth was fun anyway. We went to the center of town and walked around for a bit before heading out to Park Point. It was rainy and the windows were foggy. We were going after a virtual cache, a piece of Duluth history that has not been forgotten. There is a huge monument to 3 men that were lynched on a city street in a vigilante panic. Something the town is not proud of. There was a monument of granite and the chiseled words of writers urging us not to forget. James Baldwin was one of them. It reminded me of the power of words. Granite. And words.

The site seemed more somber in the gray day. I had just read about it on the Minnesota Historical Society’s site. And then Liz ran into a geocache along the same theme when we were packing Friday night, doing laundry, preparing the cat dishes and litter boxes. When you go away for only two days, there is a lot of prep work for the little time you get to enjoy doing nothing. But it was worth it.

I am back at home now. And the sobering reality of making a living hits me again. I started to worry yesterday. But worry is in the future. I want to stay present. So I rested and wrote. Recovering from my cold. And sending energy into the center of me.

I did have the thought before I went to bed, “What are you doing, trying to be a writer? You should have stuck with photography. It’s so much easier.”

It’s true. Photography comes more naturally to me. I find the visual arts to be easier than writing. Creative writing is a tremendous amount of work. And I’m manufacturing the details all in my head. The visual arts like photography, drawing, painting, are freeing in a different way. They are also more expensive.

To write, all I need is a pen and a piece of paper. And time.

I need to give myself the time to sit down and write. With photography, I can do it on the fly. But I have to be awake enough to see the image. And I do have to stop and be still long enough to compose the shot, and pull the shutter. I’m also a big one for full frame shots. So I don’t edit any of my images by cropping. I am a purist that way. Something I learned in Media Arts. Maybe it’s old school. But it’s the way I am.

I need to get on with the day. There is so much to do. I wish there were more time, more hours in a day to complete everything I need to get done. As it is, I can only prioritize my obligations – to other people, to work, to places I am supposed to be, tasks I am supposed to do, all the little pieces of my soul being tugged at and stretched to the limit – then take the next small step.

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2007

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Time to get to the heart of the beast. Silent predator. Guardian. Of what? The intangible tangerine. I miss the silence. The scheduled flights West. I will be going East, end of May, beginning of June. Geography. The Monkey may follow me. To the heart of the South. Breeding some nameless representation of gangly limbs and chirping mouths, receding gums. Wreeereeereereeree. My allergies are acting up. Doubts creep in. At the center is a thing that is less than me.

Everyone seems so confident on TV. What happened to Mister Ed? Airplane glue? Remember those models you used to put together? Cars. They were model cars. A 57 Chevy. Ford Model T. A 63 Volkswagen. But me, I put together models of Frankenstein’s wife. I read Mary Shelley and Edgar Allan Poe. The Fly. Tom Sawyer, too. I could never get into books about Victorian women in crinoline dresses. I wanted to. But I couldn’t.

Wait, I don’t have allergies? I am allergic to work. I’m tired. I need rest. I’m heading to Duluth, to sit by the Mother Lake, the womb of the earth, half Canadian, half American, and skim stones across the surface. It’s the tension that holds them up, the rocks, I mean. The draw bridge will rise. The snow will be gone. The wind will blow. On Park Point Beach the gulls will be flying. You will run in the rain like last time. There were dying butterflies out of season. Come to think of it, there were beetles running along the sand.


One summer I went with a friend and sat on the beach. I didn’t know her well. We laughed so much. And had a picnic in the sand. I got so burnt, I had to have a friend bring aloe vera and Solarcaine over the next day. I couldn’t move. I think it was the last thing we ever did together, the last time I saw her. I never think of her anymore. Except, look, there she is on the page.

That’s what happens. People come and they go. But when you are linked by blood, someone usually remembers what happened. Is that what they mean when they say blood is thicker than water?

Don’t feed the Monkey. Or as least if you do, make him tell you the time.

Friday, March 30th, 2007  

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