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I Should be Here

Rainbow over Vermont College of Fine Arts-2015

Remember when the world was full of rainbows? I do.

That summer, we emerged from buildings on campus to witness what you can only faintly see in the picture: a double rainbow. We stood in awe of the vibrant color, all writers, all trying to conjure words for what we found in the sky.

I wish I could say that I'm as excited about attending the post graduate program Zoom that starts tonight. Zoom is great, don't get me wrong. I can sleep in my own bed. I can dress from the waist up if I want. I wish I could convince myself that this is the right thing to do for years to come.

And maybe it is, but there is so much that goes unspoken and so much that isn't translated in the degree of separation that is the online conference, class, book club, friends gathering. When the only journey you must make is to the bathroom and to the computer screen, something gets lost in the translation.

The Seaboard storm that made so many people late one year, some without luggage at all. Meeting a friend a week early in the Adirondacks to talk writing. And the chance meetings walking from one building to the next. Oh and the night we go to Ellen's house. It usually rains. Will we ever think of gathering elbow to elbow again?

Waiting on Phiona.

And then there were all the ways we learned to imbibe, to gather, and to do some serious gutter drinking. The touch of someone's hand on your arm, the picnic table gatherings, Cafe Anna's, oh the cafe, what will we do without it?

Let's be clear, I have a hard time letting go. To let go give in to new experiences. Sure, we can cope with seeing others only from the bust up. We can deal with the gargling noises of someone drinking online. We can even glimpse what goes on the houses of others, but in the end, I hope for better days.

I'm not the typical writer in the sense that you can lock me in a room and I'm good for days on end. Give me people, give me rainbows, and give me cocktail hour on the dorm steps.

I know some day I'll be back. Until then, you'll find me at the computer for the next six days, meeting new people, absorbing as much great content about writing, and maybe doing some gutter drinking here at home.

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