Maybe because I say so
The cold air in my attic makes my muscles tense and my forehead tries to wrinkle in concentration searching through box after box after box. Its kind of pathetic really to not have totally unpacked after living somewhere for just about 4 years. I can’t find my marriage license and I need it for something official. A mundane type of paperwork thing but I have to search the house and I do. We do. Everywhere there is to look. I literally find every single thing in my life that is usually hidden except for my marriage license.
I see pictures I need frames for. Pictures of my mother when she was a girl. Her authorization to test to become a stenographer. Who knew she even did that and she never mentioned it and now I can’t ask. All the valentines, easter cards, report cards, class pictures that my grandmother saved. Her girl scout badges, confirmation pin, my great grandmothers rosary, the box she kept her billy club in which I can’t find for the life me. My grandmothers insurance card when my grandfather was yard master at Camden Yards, her library card, funeral card, deed to her grave. Velvet boxes I coveted that held jewelry I played with as a child and inherited as an adult because they all died. Photo albums, baby books, letter swith pictures of toddlers I don’t remember in christmas outfits crying for the camera. My baby shoes, still white and perfect in their original box with the thing that you can measure your foot in the lid. Letters I wrote to my mother while I was on the boat and missing her but excited about my new supposed grown up life. Letters I typed because I thought my handwriting sucks and still does.Pictures I drew that one christmas I got that book that told you step by step how to draw stuff with charcoal. Doodles I did with black water color so thick it was like ink while listening to Upstairs at Erics and wishing I was Allison Moyet.
Remembering out dining room table covered in glass with that green and white table cloth underneath, the rough raffia rug scratches my toes and keep my legs crossed indian style on the wide dining room chair. Photos of me at the multitude of proms and dances I went to with hair so big I can’t believe I dont’ have some sort of permenant neck injury. Eye makeup so intricately done thinking I looked so punk rock. Pictures of me as a chubby ten year old in that white and red puffy ski coat that I wore until the zipper broke and the sleeves were so short my arms got cold. Pictures of me as I got skinnier and skinnier to were I was a bone and big hair and still wishing I could waste myself like that.
But the metal lids close and I can put those old tins filled with memories back into the trunks and its as if that part of my life just doesn’t exisit until I lift the lids again. No one is around to tell me that it was real, that it is what made me. There are no constant reminders of what I am growing up to become because they are all dead, well, most of them.
It feels odd to have to make this life. Live this life for myself. By myself. Not to say I am alone becuase I have created this posse of people, some out of thin air to build up the life around me. Make it safer for me to venture out, knowing, that when I look back there is someone there.
There isn’t a chorus of the past but only the future of what is to become and my past is what I can put my hands on because its what I say it is.