She sat and looked at Alex, as beautiful and pasty as something out of the VC Andrews novels she devoured as a seventh grader. His eyelashes had flecks of gold in them, his hair still like cornsilk (she knew it would become brown any year now) and curling in every direction but straight down. Almost every time she misstepped, or came close to misstepping his little immune system went into hyper-drive, forcing her to do things mothers always have to do: cancel important interviews, stay home on beautiful days, allow homes to foreclose to rent smaller, more practical homes in order to stay just a little bit closer to their children while they’re still hopping on one foot, speaking in seemingly foreign languages, and hugging generously. Theresa knew that the time before her own Peter Pan left Kensington Gardens for Neverland for good was drawing nearer and nearer. Spending her days fantasizing about young architects and pining away for time with Alex wasn’t what she had play-acted with her Barbies when she was six years old. She didn’t figure that well-written post-it notes were what her legacy would be, nor the crumpling up of said post-it notes into their respective bright blue recycling bins. This was when she starting sneaking little haiku onto the post-it notes around her desk (which had to be kept free and clear of extemporaneous post-it notes, by order of the Prime architect at the firm; who wasn’t, by the way, one of the ones she fantasized about in her red and white colored day-dreams ). She tucked them away underneath the keyboard, behind the desk calendar (that never had anything written in the hours), wrapped around her pen and pencil cup. These tiny little dreams were her only hope of reaching back inside her chest cavity into something authentic again, and she held onto them like magic pebbles. They sometimes went a little like this:
As moose amble down
this crowded frost heaved street scape
men in black look up
They weren’t that great at first, and she kept questioning whether they should be hidden away or brought home for kindling for their apartment’s fireplace, but they gave her something for her hands to do besides thrum and drum or sit quietly in her lap. She kept looking for interruptions, for excuses to run, and soon in her tired and pretty head something entered that gave her mushabooming hope. If you haven’t figured out already this is a true story, and all names have barely been changed, and there are no innocents to protect.