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Catherine Fischer

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Prescience [Sep. 18th, 2002|09:19 pm]
Catherine Fischer
[mood |gratefulgrateful]

Came across something I wrote last December, the other day -- I had written notes on the back of it. Put the wind up my back, how true it was.

December

Having celebrated last night
with no thought of the morning
wakeful early, dry, my
voice a column of silent air
within my throat
like the waterglass I left outside
the windowsill; now the rainclouds
have receded, the water
subsides, subsides
never to brim over.
Mute as a sponge, I take in
yellow December cottonwoods
the baked hills limned with the first stirrings of green
in the muted, sere California palette
oaks huddled in shadowed declivities
the ocean brushed dark by the wind’s fingers;
I push against the air
shoving my way south
but I cannot outpace
the weary fluidity of my thoughts
haunting corners dream-cobwebbed
and all pointing to this:
balanced on the moment of silence
the fulcrum of the solstice
anxiously looking beyond
at the brilliant chaos of change.

12/5/01

Ah, prescience. If only I had REALLY known.

Spent a long afternoon and evening in the gross anatomy lab today, going over and over and over the structures I'm going to be expected to identify on Friday. (God, I hate the smell of that place. I have permanently stopped biting my fingernails because I am horrified at the thought I might have touched something that touched ANYTHING in that lab.) I have been warned: this is going to be the EASY test, and I'll want the highest percentage of available points, to counterbalance possibly deficient subsequent tests. You know how you feel about some huge impending responsibility when you actually dig in and make some progress -- how some of the load is lifted? I'm finally starting to believe I can do this, and still manage to study for and pass the test I have in histology on Monday. Well, the key to learning is repetition, they say.

I live in a wonderful place. This morning on the radio was this long drawn-out saga about a woman's experiences with the police and how ineffectual she feels they are -- told extemporaneously by the woman who had the experiences. This took over half an hour. It was funny as hell.

Got a fit of the giggles in the parking lot at school, when someone's amazing Rossmobile drove by squealing like a pig in pain, but louder -- belts seem to be a problem around here.

Ah, the Rossmobile, an island institution. Ross students seem to drive the most crapulous shitmobiles on St. Kitts -- the cars no local would be caught dead driving (much less could they afford to insure these hunks of automotive jetsam; insurance goes up with age and decrepitude). Frequently, Rossmobiles leave parts on the road as they pass by. You can also find dozens of students engaged in jumpstarting/towing/fixing their cars ON CAMPUS at any given time of the day. Many of them give up and ride with other students -- at least there are more students to push the jalopy when it breaks down that way.

I think it was the third "rattle-clunk-SQUEAL-BANG" driving past that did me in. I just leaned against the building and laughed until the tears streamed down my face. It felt good.

Tomorrow is the anniversary of St. Kitts' independence from Great Britain -- the country is 19 years old. So everything, including Ross, is closed. Which means that I and all of my fellow first-semesters will be in the gross anatomy lab, reviewing for Friday's lab exam. As Monday is our first histology exam, I'll be seeing the lot of them on the weekend, too -- all of us poring over our slide sets. Ah, stratified squamous epithelium.

The moon, almost full, poured gold in a shining slick across the sea to Nevis, sparkling like a gem this evening. I stopped on the stairway to admire it, and was amazed at the largest cloud of insects I'd ever seen, swarming around the klieg light that illuminates the road below campus. A piper frog started up somewhere to my left -- I never have been able to spot one. (Just like I've never been able to catch a mongoose on camera. But I swear, next time Dr. Reich does one of his famous cellular impressions, I'M GETTING A PHOTO OF IT. No one will ever believe my stories, otherwise.) A feral cat (they thrive on campus as they do nowhere else on the island) ducked off into the cane field next to where I was parked, my windshield framing the view of Nevis. A perfect moment, in a very good day.
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