The Fruited Plain

Because, once again, I’m in danger of being happy.

Red's Wrap

I’m in danger of being happy.

I resist the foreignness of it, this possibility of happiness. There must be a rock I’ve failed to turn over. But no, all of the rocks have been lifted up and the earth beneath them studied hard. It isn’t pretty what’s there. Some of it is terrifying.

There’s my age.

There’s my children.

There’s the specter of loss that haunts me all the time. The crack in the sidewalk I’m about to step on, The mistake. The phone call.

And then there is this bowl of tangerines which, by its very name, says bounty. Last week, my grandson asked me to peel five tangerines before I realized he could peel them himself. And then his independence depressed me just the slightest bit. But then it didn’t.

The happiness feels like floating. It feels like freedom, a balloon let go over the beach, people looking…

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