Tomorrow morning around 9am, a scalpel will slice into my knee skin and the hardware that was once hammered into my patella, will be removed. There is also a chance, if my bone is too damaged to carry on by itself, to generate healthy cells and smoothly glass over and under muscles, that I may end up with the part of someone else's kneecap, a very recently deceased someone else's kneecap, inside my kneecap. A surgeon called Dr. Greenleaf, who has a great reputation for doing this sort of thing, will continue doing this sort of thing...on me. I know this is a necessary sort of thing, the kind of thing that will enable me to climb volcanos and crawl across the skinny part of Idaho, so I'm sending a little waft of yellow into the ether, to the surgery Gods, to Winter and Spring and Summer and Fall, to the Pacific Ocean, to all the books I've ever read and want to read, to the dear humans of the world, to trees of all kind, to deep sea creatures that light up black, to hidden corners, to dust, to Pluto, to love. This little waft of yellow is more gigantic than little. It's a yellow that carries the weight of the sun. It's here for me. It's there for you. It's breathing in, breathing out. It's in our veins and nestled in the roots of ancient banyan trees. It's a multipurpose yellow, for cleaning toilets, for attending arias, for radio silence, for the crunch of snow, the swipe of a credit card, the back of a left-handed handshake, a crab's shell, a Burmese tiger nap, a bowl of minestrone soup, two claps, one ball, spinning, spinning, spinning then caught by the sweaty hand of a child. It's a squeeze. It's a tug. It's a mighty rubdown. It wanders and lopes. It's a parade on the face of the moon when no one is looking.
A few things:
This body of mine is feeling stronger and stronger. The knee still aches, but less than it did last month and the month before that. Biking to and from work each and every day seems to help. As do the "power squats with giant chinchilla" exercises my trainer recommends.
I'm reading How to Be Both by Ali Smith and, halfway through, still find myself unsure as to whether or not I'm enjoying it.
Another Process Mundane email is in the percolator. This time, I'm evaluating the whole "paying taxes" thing millions of Americans choose do each and every year.
Dreams are becoming more and more vivid as I google images from them.
Beckett now prefers to wear her princess cape while eating breakfast.
Over the last six weeks, I've grown more curious about injuries and the scars those injuries leave. And since I have a bit more time than usual to sit and sit, and heal this bang-up knee, I've decided to do a series portraits depicting my own battle wounds.
Here are the first two:
The gash on my knee is from the surgery I had nearly 6 weeks ago after falling off my bike on 10th avenue and Flanders in downtown Portland. It was a beautiful Friday and that week, and I'd just started a new job. I was feeling self-assured and happy when my bike tire slid into the tram track and sent me flying off my seat.
I was 17 and hanging out with my childhood friend, Jill. It was a late summer day and I was wearing a dip-dye t-shirt and a pair of cutoff jean shorts. We got stoned on our 30 minute drive up to Evergreen from Denver and decided to stop and get some ice cream at Baskin Robbins. As we were crossing the street, I was hit by a forest green, American sedan, driven by a boy wearing a Dairy Queen uniform. The bumper smashed into my thigh. I flew into the windshield, then back into the air, then skid across the street several feet. When I woke up it was raining and the Dairy Queen boy was jumping above my head screaming "I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!"