Happy 100 Days: 2

I stumble into the house, dump the groceries, take note of the dishes in the sink, and walk the dog. I tell myself, “After I fill her water bowl, I can relax.” I fill the water bowl. “As soon as I’ve put away the groceries, I can sit down.” I put away the groceries. “I’ll just start the laundry and then I’ll read the paper.” I start the laundry. “I could just do the dishes quick.”
 
Before crossing the kitchen, I turn on the radio. Bug’s favorite station is programmed: 94.7, all pop, all the time. I stop halfway to the sink. The music comes at me in a crash, sweeping me off my feet more completely than a riptide. There is no staying put on this shifting shore.I don’t even know the song even though I have heard it a dozen times. It doesn’t matter.
 
I dance.
 
The cat is yowling to go out. The dishes are waiting. The suitcases are not unpacked and there are five unanswered voice messages on the phone. Every bit of it tips off the edge of the earth and churns to the splintering deep. I ride the black and starlit crest of a wave.
 
I dance.
 
Through one song. Then another. My eyes are closed as I move there on the kitchen tile, wedged between the table and the counters. Still in my coat, I lift my arms and let the rhythm move my spine, swerve my hips, and turn me in small revolutions on this swelling stage. The undertow carries me further towards that misted moon.
 
I dance.
 
Three songs. Part of a fourth. Then, I feel sand beneath my feet. I tumble to dry land. I come back to earth. I stand there in the empty house and notice that the contents of the place have all come back to where they were before, yet they are somehow off by the slightest degree. They exist just beyond my immediate grasp. Everything has landed where it happens to be and not one bit of it needs me.
 
Forget the dishes. Forget the messages. I go upstairs and put on my comfiest sweats. The rest of the evening is for a soft couch and love songs. The rest, just for me.
 

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