Septemus 35

The 7uppo7ition7 of 7eptemu7 7even7

I wonder what can feel happier than to sit at the kitchen table, writing. Outside, mockingbirds call. Colors buzz. Breezes follow paths of least resistance. Tiny molecules, smelling of pollen, candy, and cappuccino, hitch rides on the moving air. All this happens out the window, while in here, I hear the scratch of my pencil on brittle paper.


“You’re writing!” That’s my pops. He’s a writer, too. Nothing makes him happier than to see me write or read or close my eyes, lost in a daydream or a song. When Pops is happy, I am happy. And when I, he, too.


“Son, is that your calculus textbook you’re writing in?”

It is.


I can’t help it. I love to write between the lines of printed text.


“Do you need me to buy you another journal?” asks Pops.

“No, I’ve got the old one,” answers I.

I shut the book with a satisfying schlump! and a puff of air whooshes my chin.


When I close my journal, it shuts with a sigh. All right for quiet thoughts, but nowhere near sturdy enough for any emotional magnitude!

Before bed, Pops joins me at the table with a plate of faux BLT for him and a slice of chocolate cake for me. I adore chocolate cake. It is my new favorite food. I think I will live on it.

When I was a little child, Pops wrote me letters. We have a shelf in the closet full of journals of letters to me. I have already begun to read them, though he said he was saving them for when I graduated from high school

“Why did you stop writing me letters?” I ask.


“I didn’t know you cared,” answers Pops.

“I love your letters,” I reply.

“When you were young,” says Pops, “we needed the letters, I felt, so that you could remember–so I could remember. But now, you’re nearly grown! You’ll remember everything without me writing it down.”

“But it’s not the same,” I answer. “You can write things in a letter that you can’t say.”

I think I forgot to say that out loud. It’s easy to forget. We can say things silently that we can’t say through talking.


“Would you like me to start writing again?” asks Pops.


“Please,” I say aloud.

“All right then,” says Pops.

“O, squeegee!”


With that important matter out of the way, I wash the dishes. I always wash the dishes. I have a thing for bubbles. Plus, if I wash the dishes, I can make sure that the faucet is turned off when I’m finished.

Have you noticed that bubbles connect? Inside a bubble is what, air–space. And the covering of a bubble is a tiny membrane of soap-water molecules, stuck together through soapy viscosity–or maybe the adherence of hydrogen molecules. I will have to look this up.

And then–this is the beautiful part–their little skins touch and stick to each other. Sometimes a cluster of three, four, five bubbles will rise up, floating on the currents of air! And what is in each one? The same as what is in the other.


You see, I can write this. But I don’t know if I could speak it. When Pops writes to me, I get to know his thoughts on things like bubbles, smiles, moonlight, and me.

I can hardly wait for his next letter. It has been so long!

<< Previous | Next >>