I sometimes wonder what it would be like if all my broken things were in one place. A twisted dark maze of the disassembled and shattered. An antique shop filled with twisted curiosities. Towering stacks of the once important, transformed into useless garbage through a simple action not properly executed and thought out. Visual proof of every bad decision.
Dolls who lost their hair from the scissors I took from the junk drawer would sprawl in a corner with chewed feet and missing limbs. Toy trucks forgotten in the bushes one fall would be parked permanently with wheels bent at odd angles from axles weakened with rust. Pencils chewed then snapped in half while doing math homework would lay next to the broken jewelry my mother thought little girls should be careful of.
In a corner partitioned from the useless objects, words would float among dust particles which danced in spartan sunlight. “You have weird legs that bend backwards like a letter C, Your butt won’t fit in that little chair next summer if you keep growing like this, You’re skinny now, but wait ’til you’re older, Boys don’t like girls with A-cups, I can’t believe that you finally made a basket and it was for the wrong team, You’re fun to trip because it’s so easy, Mom please let me take Acro instead of piano…”
As my autistic sons joined my path, shards of glass would lay with hunks of sheet-rock. Piles of broken toys and electronics would climb out of sight. Countless CD players mingling with toys chosen poorly by an out of touch Santa. Old friends would hide in a corner avoiding eye contact. Words I had written on paper would be shredded into confetti. Appliances decimated by dents and over-use would form a mountain. Everything Connor once had and treasured would lie useless and destroyed. The silent ghost of Xander would fumble quietly with the scraps. Hands flapping in excitement as he plays with the pieces.
A bathroom scale flashing “83” would hover like a phantom. An image of myself with hip bones that could slice paper, meld with almost invisible desires of control and perfection that float like smoke tendrils. Echoing reprimands from the few who still care are met with the insanity of a person who sees the ability to eat from the mouth as desirable and effective as through the ear canal. The buzz from craziness and starvation would cocoon the area. Still trying to conceal itself in the attic of the lost and destroyed.
Then, a tight staircase leading from the place of the broken. A window would stream sunlight from a window high above. An invisible fire radiates from where four children huddle entwined in love. Four shades of gold managing to shine in scant rays of sun. A poem I feel but can’t see dances in the ensuing warmth. A marriage, strong from scarring and sinew, holds the broken fragments together. A song just out of hearing gives comfort. A thought I can’t place makes sense of everything. Somehow I manage an awkward cartwheel, but I can’t play a chord on the piano in spite of all the lessons.