a visit from Beverly Williamsburg

To awake early on an Autumn morning…a rainforest outside my window…red-beaked bird with plump form and thick red feathers by its bum like a half-opened fan. Notice the crackle of rain drops against crunchy leaves, soggy from a night of rain. Notice the sky with a hint of jaundice, yellowed and bright. An interruption of traffic that cannot be seen because my windows represent backyards, no streets in sight. The haunt of their exhaust fumes, horns and (perhaps) angry drivers exist somewhere off stage.

To climb out of bed as though it is a tree far from flat land. Thin blanket (in need of its Autumn/Winter replacement) pushed away from nude body, already shivering from early-morning air pressing against it. Toes tangle over wooden floor, still sleepy, still remembering their function after many hours asleep. Limbs search for clothes, even though no one is awake at this time and nudity can be kept a secret still.

Coffee. All thoughts have an aroma of berries or seeds or beans, produced by several species of the small evergreen bush of the genus Coffea. The boil of water. The measurement of ground up caffeine dropped into french press. The contemplative practice of waiting. For boil. For saturation.

I turn, from bedroom into kitchen. Just a few steps away. And. Gasp.

Beverly Williamsburg.

She had been visiting for over a month now; however, she must have been feeling anti-social. She never waited for me to notice her. She lurked at night while others were sleeping. Beverly is not meticulous about putting things away. By this, I mean her excrement. Many mornings, I would awake to Beverly’s droppings behind the blender or near the stained glass holder of large spoons and spatulas. No postcard or note left on a torn piece of paper. Beverly was never known for her pleasantries or manners.


My dad has always said to me:

Aimee, bugs and animals should be left alone when roaming outdoors, but once they enter my house, uninvited, then that is a time we can dispose of them.

I should interrupt this and mention that my dad is not a vegetarian, nor am I. However, we do not hunt (except for good deals on free-range meat).

Upon walking into darkened kitchen, I notice Beverly without suitcase or housewarming present. She is stuck on a rectangular piece of paper about the size of a postcard. She is struggling for freedom on a trap covered in invisible glue, placed by a human named Exterminator. It is 6:42 am and Beverly finally makes an entrance, which will unfortunately be her last.