My hands cannot remain straight.
I am constantly aware of this each time I try to cut a piece of wood using mighty band saw. I am wavering.
I’ve never wanted to be more straight in my life. Here, in the midwest flatlands, where nyc sirens have been replaced by scratching paws of raccoons living inside the walls of this house called victoria, and crickets and frog gulps and ticks singeing beneath flames, I am deeply aware of the way I measure and move.
When I use electric sander to smooth out the wood, my hands dance freely. I do not need to move in straight lines, instead I glide in circles.
But when drilling holes, which must be perfectly symmetrical from one side to the other, I notice how deeply un-heterosexual my line is.
Does this make me an incompetent not-quite-but-wish-i-was carpenter. Must things really be so straight all the time?
When I walk, my stride shifts. My crumbs, if dropped, would create a jagged pattern documenting where I’ve been. When I speak, even my words curl, somehow making their way into coherency, but definitely not (and I assure you) through a straight line.
Perhaps I only want to be straight because I think this is the direction things should go. But so much of nature is not straight. Even the fields, perfect one-mile radius on each side, may appear straight but if studied long enough, one would see it’s homosexual (queer) lines. Because of footprints and the tall tall grass. And the ways in which the earth just shifts sometimes.
OK. I’m cool with my homosexual shake. My meandering zigzag lines. Even with the uneven slicing of saw, I still installed some beautiful, smooth shelves. Installed in free-standing cupboard, originally meant for coats. Now, a home for ceramic plates and bowls.