The dead call to say they池e not dead, or they are, but in any case, would I please stop writing about them? All of my old lovers call to say they prefer their privacy, so maybe I should stop writing about them. My brothers and my sisters call, then my mother, then my partner, all to ask, would I please stop writing about them? All right. But what then? This morning I sat in an office surrounded by a sea of papers. They all had to be put in order. So I put them in order, in neat little piles, then larger groups, then into the folders and the files where they belong. This is what I知 good at when I知 not writing about the lives of those I love, have loved, may love; when I知 not borrowing heavily from the lessons they致e learned through pleasure and pain. This afternoon I stopped for the things we need to keep our house running: cleansers, cat food, laundry detergent. I pick them up week by week, we use them up week by week and then I go and get more. This is what I知 good at when I知 not remembering the fields of my youth, the evenly spaced rows of green and black, plant and soil, the odd sunflowers that sprang up because hungry birds carried the seeds from feeder to nest and dropped a few along the way; the sudden tall yellowness of such flowers in the cultivated order of things. This is what I知 good at when I知 not recalling a former love, the bend of his back, shoulders sculpted by afternoon light. This evening I made dinner, something not too good but edible. This is what I do when I知 not reliving the scenes of a childhood I remember more from stories than experience. I feed things: my partner, my cats, the strays in the garage. This is what I知 good at: taking care of people and things that need taking care of. This, when I知 not thinking of my parents, their lives intersecting at just the wrong time in order to make each of us, my brothers and sisters and me. When I知 not dwelling on this then I知 washing the dishes, washing the clothes, taking out the garbage. This is what I知 good for: running my little life, when I知 not locked away in my room, trying to write about all of the things I知 told I shouldn稚, yet must, and do.