saying, “If I’m gonna breathe this world deep
I’m gonna get a song out of it.” —Andrea Gibson (via loverofstories)
The following sees to be a classic among mystery novels, crime shows, and situations of investigation:
“I don’t know, but whoever was here, they left in a hurry.”
If I got out of this tub (because I was in the middle of a bubble bath, naturally) and walked out my door, what would they say when they came looking for me and found my things left behind by the girl who didn’t leave in a hurry?
From the front door, there would be a trail of wet footprints and traces of burst bubbles leading back into my room, disappearing at the threshold as I stepped onto the carpet but then reappearing five feet later on the tile floor of my bathroom, ending in two puddles on a white bathrug with brown trim. The bathtub is half-full of lukewarm water with two or three floating islands of stubborn bubbles that refuse to pop.
There are books everywhere: two on the counter by the sink, one on top of a Kleenex box on the commode of the toilet, a stack of five on the stand beside the bathtub. Ditto for large cups of half-drunk water, mostly yellow, plastic ones from Rudy’s Bar-b-que. The jewelry is still in a dish next to the hairbrush and curl de-frizzing cream. It’s everyday jewelry: three rings and a pair of pearl studs.
The key to the whole mystery, however, is in the bedroom: if the supposed missing person had, in fact, left in a hurry, there would be more books missing from the bookshelf.
The bass from the speakers thrummed across my collarbones and landed in the hollow at the base of my neck, settling there until I couldn’t tell where the music began and where my heartbeat ended.
He spoke the language of shoulders. He understood the nuances of shrugs better than words. He communicated best by lifts and shifts and shimmies of joints and muscle and bone. Strangers standing next to him in line at restaurants or sitting on the bus would feel compelled to lay their heads on his shoulders, if only for a minute. Mothers would sheepishly pass off their squalling babies to him and they would be cooing contentedly the instant he pressed their faces into his shoulder. He spoke to people through their shoulders. The first time he said ‘I love you’ it was by pushing her shirt aside and kissing the top of her shoulder.
Sometimes, though, his shoulders felt heavy from all of the things his shoulders were saying and hearing. But mostly they felt so heavy because of all of the secrets that people carried on their shoulders, secrets only he could hear because he understood the language of shoulders. Thus, he became complicit in their secrets and their secrets became his, weighing his shoulders down.
I’m terrible at mixing metaphors. I do believe that I get it (like most other things) from my mother.
Why use one when you can use two that, for the most part, mean the same thing? The joke is on you + the egg is on your face? The joke is on your face. Flying by the seat of your pants + flying off the handle? Flying by the handle of your seat.
He had to consider that the directions were by someone whose sense of direction was terribly skewed. If she said that she was 10 feet from the door, it was possible that she was on the opposite side of the room, though it could also be true that she was right inside the threshold. If she said turn left in 30 yards, you would most likely pass the turn and have to pull at least two U-turns.
She had a hard time understanding the concept of yards, feet, inches, and miles. Instead she tried to stick primarily to generalities: a little bit, just up head, a brief distance, near enough. She said it was always because she had been more disposed to dealing with letters than numbers.