My eyes are strained, dry, with heavy lids. My neck taught, the tendons around my clavicles wound up like thread on a spool. Jaw clenched in its slight over and cross bite, a feat of human evolution. I know through the night I’ve been clacking and grinding down my back sets of molars. Waking up feeling as though someone slapped me straight into tomorrow, no rest for the weary.
The body I feel, legs heavy, a kind of throbbing, the whoosh of blood pulsing and pushing the muscles further down into the ground, further. The body experiencing gravity and gravity experiencing the body. In sync, in rotation, embodiment. Bone tired is an expression I’d only before heard and now I feel.
Thoughts float in like bubbles, here, there, I cannot catch them before they are set adrift in the invisible current. I cannot hold them. Track them, like a great hunter in the woods trying to find the thing I seek, the thing I lost, feeling in the dark for the familiar, a tree branch, a rock formation along the trail. The object, if I pull it, might be the end. end of what, I don’t know. The pandemic, a memory, a relationship, self-reliance, being awakened, the moment after waking up before I realize I’m awake and the world is treacherous and we will all die.
Three weeks ago it began. Missing a word, forgetting a place, working too long to conjure up a name. no one else has noticed it, or so they say.
But I notice it.
Is this what it feels like, the slow burn of aging, the fast flame of life, of dementia, of metastasis to the brain, of all these years without hormones speeding up cellular deterioration and calcification of neural superhighways. No longer being the friend who is identified as the elephant because she never forgets. Being that person, a body, then a shell, later a carcass, alone in the darkness, waiting.