AUTHOR: Beth TITLE: DATE: 6/25/2004 09:33:00 AM ----- BODY:

Eyes of Dream-Water

So far I've bought sheets that don't fit the bed and a shower curtain we couldn't hang up, because it didn't have any holes for rings. So there is definitely a learning curve. This is what Steve and I did together yesterday: I woke him up from a sound sleep at my parents' house, after he pulled an all-nighter to finish his presentation for the Epic Brass Summer Institute and then delivered said presentation at ten that morning; he helped me bring another load o' crap over to the apartment, joined the panel discussion my entire family had about What to Do with the Stereo Since It Doesn't Fit Where It Was Supposed to Go, and then helped me sort out the videos and DVDs onto the movie rack; went to Boston Market for dinner and then Wal-Mart to get some things; returned with Wal-Mart stuff and either hung it up or put it away or put it together. All and all, he and I were together nonstop for six solid hours doing nothing but work on the apartment together. And by the end of the day, I still wanted to hold his hand. Yesterday as he was sorting out the movies, I was setting up the computer. Finally we could have some music while we worked; we flipped through a few choices (and blundered with the speakers quite a bit) to choose The First Song We Played at the Apartment. Finally we chose "Water Night", a choral piece, the lyrics of which are a translation of a poem by Octavio Paz:
Night with the eyes of a horse that trembles in the night, night with eyes of water in the field asleep is in your eyes, a horse that trembles, is in your eyes of a secret water. Eyes of shadow-water, eyes of well-water, eyes of dream-water. Silence and solitude, two little animals moon-led, drink in your eyes, drink in those waters. If you open your eyes, night opens, doors of musk, the secret kingdom of the water opens flowing from the center of night. And if you close your eyes, a river fills you from within, flows forward, darkens you: night brings its wetness to beaches in your soul.
If you think the lyrics are beautiful, you should hear the setting by Eric Whitacre. Things I now have: a huge plastic outdoor trash barrel with a strip of duct tape across the top with our last names and apartment number in Sharpie marker; a little baby coffee maker with a four-cup pot; a kitchen table. In the afternoon the bedroom blazes with sunlight. Normally I'm not a huge fan of sunlight, as we know, but the way it streams in through the blinds onto the white walls and the white bed makes it look like a page out of a catalog. At night the trees outside the windows whisper to each other, and at different times during the day you can hear the Latin family next door blasting their salsa music. I've discovered that if I open the bedroom closets a little bit of the air conditioning in the downstairs apartment comes through. When you hit the bend in the stairs you can smell my downstairs neighbor's cigarettes. If you run into said downstairs neighbor he usually has a can of Budweiser in his hand. Doesn't make a bad guy, I suppose. His wife? Mother? Woman who lives with him, anyway, is a sweet lady who has already helped us with some of our detritus. She anxiously offers to move her air conditioner, her gardening stuff, her car, in case they're "in our way." I don't know who lives in Apt. 5. I've met everyone else but him. It's the attic apartment, and the stairs to it jut down into my kitchen ceiling. I hear heavy footsteps there sometimes, but nothing else, and I've never seen a face. The what-ifs are crowding at the windowsills and pounding at the glass. I will not let them in.