27. Vase

On certain days, I drink teaspoonfuls of liquid from the vase you gave me. It tastes like I imagine the day after tomorrow might taste if filtered through yesterday and today. Tomorrow, I will water my garden with it.

Tomorrow comes every day, just like it did yesterday and the day before that. My garden thrives, and the vase never empties. It’s as though the liquid has some unseen source, and I don’t question it. When I’m not using it, the vase sits on the windowsill over the kitchen sink.

Why is it that every kitchen sink has a window over it? Who decided that convention should dictate there be a window there? Is it so the person laboring at the sink can have a view? Or is the window simply there so that the light will play through the vase on the sill and make patterns and fragments of patterns on the internal planes of the kitchen?

The vase is purple glass. The vase is not the Chevy I used to drive when I was just a kid. The vase is two-thirds full. The vase does not have the word, “Try” written across it in bold letters. When I water my garden, I tip the vase on its side until liquid pours out of it, and then I move it around from plant to plant. The vase does not have a degree from a state university. When I sample the nectar of the vase, I use a long-handled silver spoon to carry a mouthful to my lips. The vase is a long-legged spider. The vase is not the animals of the north pole. The vase is the shadow of the mountains over the grocery store. The vase is not my dinner, and I don’t use it as a trolley.

Next Wednesday, whenever it comes, is when I will throw the vase off a cliff to see if it breaks. How will I explain it? How will I walk away from it? How will I find a tiny vase at the bottom of a cliff in the middle of nowhere? What if it breaks? What if it doesn’t? What will become of its contents in either case? What will I do about my garden?

Too many questions. I sit in the kitchen, waiting for Wednesday and the anguish it must bring. The vase sits on the windowsill over the sink, refracting the sunset across my face and the floor. Outside, a dog barks.

I will smear vaseline on the eyelids of need. I will carry around a chicken leg to ward off dandruff. I will toil endlessly to eradicate mouse abuse. I will take up quilting and make blankets to cover the Sahara. I know all of this will avail me little.

There will be a Wednesday.

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