Thursday, August 12, 2010

stories, made up and not

Finally found time to go to the library. Found a "Complete" volume of H. G. Wells short stories. There are still a few I haven't read. Only a few. And a copy of Darwinia by Robert Charles Wilson, also the flavor I was looking for, it turns out.
Among the books for Orion we chose Three Tales of My Father's Dragon. This is a classic I missed somehow. Can't read everything, despite my efforts. It was brought to my attention by Eva Volin, who is, among many other things, supervising children’s librarian for the Alameda Free Library in Alameda, California. She commissioned a reading poppet a few months ago:

Eva, if you're reading this, thank you. We've had a wonderful time reading these stories together. It's obvious why they've endured for over sixty years.
Orion doesn't want them to end. We've promised to read them again in the future.

I just returned from one of those late, quick trips to our neighborhood Vons. The night clerks are always more interesting. I show up occasionally at odd hours, in studio grunge or in winter, pajamas under a trench coat. If I'm there for one thing, I usually try to throw in another item for contrast---for instance, 16 bags of rubber bands and and a tub of butter. Artists not only get away with this sort of oddness--it seems generally expected.

I think the long, difficult summer has finally caught up with me physically. I've tried to keep things balanced, but after a while, one has to have a true break, complete with a change of scenery. I don't know when that will happen. Not in the foreseeable future. Like sleep, I don't think there's a substitute.
I feel pretty much like crap. I'm avoiding looking in the mirror. Too unfamiliar, too scary. Right. It is what it is. It's a tough profession I've chosen. I'm in good company. Times are hard, could be worse and all that. I know. I get that. I even appreciate it. But sometimes it's still just fucking miserable and nothing to fix it. Dr. Seuss knew this and he was wise beyond human. I think he was secretly a poppet.

When I came out of the store I saw the crescent moon. It stopped me short. Just about to set behind the mountains, it was huge in a dark teal sky. It was a delicate illuminated sliver of glass, of ice, of magic, balanced on point. It was my moon, performing a secret dance just for the rare spark of a little girl who still wonders large. I stood dumb in my flip flops, clerks and cleverness forgotten, clutching my trash bags, doughnuts and vodka and crying like a baby.

By the time I got home it was gone. There was just the mountains, the garage light and things to do. I'll sleep soon. Dream. Tomorrow is its own story. All I need do is show up.

Silly human.


guerrilla girl said...

My daughter loved Three Tales of My Father's Dragon. We read it together several years ago.

I live 80-ish miles west of you, and spent a little time photographing tonight's moon. Maybe it was the juxtaposition with Venus, maybe it was where the moon sat in the twilight sky, but it was particularly spectacular. I couldn't capture the color of the sky, but I got light, dark and craters, which, come to think of it, is a rather apt description of my own life in recent months.

J.W.B. said...

I'll have to check out that book...sounds interesting. I need to get into classic authors like Wells and Poe more.

Dr. Seuss most certainly had an unknown connection to the Poppet aura if he wasn't one himself.

Yesterday was cloudy...missed the moon and the meteor shower...but I love those moments of natual magic.

DavidK said...

A couple of other books of older vintage that you might want to consider: The Enormous Egg by Oliver Butterworth, and The Shy Stegosaurus of Cricket Creek by Evelyn Lampman.

We had huge thunderstorms move through last night, so I didn't get to see the Perseid shower, unfortunately...

J.W.B. said...

Now today I was thinking about what my favorite book was when I was's not old but for sure my favorite book was one called "Piggy Pie" ... I forget the authors name though..It was about a witch trying to kill pigs on a farm for pie. I was that type of toddler I guess. lol

David Niall Wilson said...

Thought I'd drop this link over here for Lisa's daughter owns several poppets...she and my son Zane (budding filmmaker) created a stop-motion film with the poppets, some crayons, and...well...

Poppet Cleanup

Eva said...

After all these years, I've just found this post. I'm thrilled you and Orion discovered the My Father's Dragon stories together. How perfect. I hope you enjoyed the book as much as I enjoy spending time with my Poppet and his dragon.