all poems and photographs
© by Maya Stein

all poems and photographs
© by Maya Stein
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Thursday, April 30, 2009

instructions upon waking


























Ignore the balls of dust on the rug, the laundry pile metastasizing, the reams of mail spilling from the kitchen counter. The blanket on the couch does not have to be folded into four perfect corners. The dishes from yesterday can stand another soak. A shower is unnecessary. Overlook the uneven, mismatched topography of the living room, the coats you have cast off on your writing chair, the knapsack of dirty gym clothes, the books you haven't read, the wrinkled inserts of magazines littering the coffee table.

Turn the heat on. Make coffee. Look out the window. Consider the contours of your body. Put socks on. Know that someone else is thinking of you, as they dress and gird themselves for the day. They are thinking, perhaps, of your lips, or your hands. They are thinking of your warmth, your long limbs, your smile, the way you know exactly how to touch them. They are not scanning the house for crumbs, urging you to vacuum. Imagine this a day of no fault-finding, no derision, no pulverizing ache to do a better job. Make breakfast. Eat until you are full.

9 comments:

GailNHB said...

I like this a lot. I think about many dear friends when I am getting up and getting dressed. I'd never stopped to think that other are thinking of me also.

I need to imagine a day like that: a day of no fault-finding. Just a loving gaze from afar. And from close at hand also.

Jennifer/The Word Cellar said...

God almighty, this just saved me.

Thank you.

(oh, and the captcha word below is "grace". did you plan that? is that even possible?)

righthandgram said...

This is the first thing of yours I have read. It's perfect. I'm sending it directly to my daughter whose house looked just as you describe. I know she'll value the sentiment. I did.

Emily said...

beautiful.
i sometimes find it hard to ignore the mess, but having just had a weekend of being okay with it, reading this seems even more perfect.
will there be another book soon? i still re-read your previous ones :)
~ em.

Lisa said...

This is wonderful! Beautiful! So well put! I fell deeper and deeper into visual and tactile sensations as I read through it.

Thank you :-)

elk said...

this
hold
much
truth!
...
elk

Val said...

This speaks to me in just the most perfect way.
Thank you.

the girl said...

Hi there -

Visited on a recommendation from Sas of "Sas' Magical Mystery Tour".

My goodness, I'm so glad I did :)

If it's OK with you, I'd like to print this out and stick it on my fridge door as a gentle morning reminder to be kind to myself.

Thanks so much

xo

Monique said...

I needed this. I love how it seems to ask me to let guilt melt away. Guilt that I should be doing something. Rather than have that push me through my day, the freedom from that guilt gives me an opportunity to just be who I am. This has become harder and harder for me. So thank you.