total page views

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


“Earthquakes move mountains. But so do imagination and ingenuity — when
matched with implementation."

Almonds in the Elevator at the Seaview Inn

We are where we are for a reason as I navigate,
traveling north up the coast from Virginia, August of 2011.
I cannot forget the dropped almonds in the elevator,
an odd touchstone of our journey as we left room 392.
We are where we are for a reason.

I push the round button reading star-1 until it glows white.
A tall man sharing our elevator stares into me,
eye to eye, (the first true elevator was invented in 1850.)
Side mirrors reflecting rippling pictures of our cab ride,
reliving an identical message, we are the same as ripples
in each layer of time. We all look down to the almonds,
a broken cluster of oily fruit, the same brown as the wood floor,
next to an inlay of a compass rose. We ride the dependable elevator,
which moves up and down between four historical floors in
a hotel established in 1914. I capture the 45 seconds
dive through the shaft, the suspension of our drop in
a shared pulley system in lieu of steps, we are all
locked in a conversation of the proper destination of an almond.
The bronzed doors open and quietly disappear into the pockets
of the lobby walls, perfectly fit layers. The man says,
”I will not forget the almonds in the elevator,” and we exit.

I won’t forget the concrete porch of Fred and Ethel’s
Lantern Light Tavern moving, magnitude 5.8, from the
shifting plates of our earth’s mantel, back and forth,
mirages of heat waves, a reverse faulting,
(the last quake in Virginia was in 1875,
leaving broken windows and fallen chimneys.)
The rippling cement is tricking the nature of reality;
our water glasses are trembling. Am I confused or
am I imagining as the hidden layers of the earth are colliding,
I think I am dying. I ask my daughter, “do you feel it?” I feel like

a lost ship deserted in a desert pining for its ocean, knowing
is not my oxygen. It struck me,
the entire eastern shore is shifting, an earth quake, and
within 45 seconds the earth’s plates settle.
The ground is stable. Is it dependable?

Was the man who said he would not forget the almond on the elevator
wondering where the woman with the three children was while the earth trembled?
We are where we are for a reason.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking a moment to leave me your word of wisdom.