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The loft may be the answer

I feel my upper mind is in disarray, and as subtle as it might seem, I do believe that organizing and cleaning my loft is the answer ... the loft appears like an icon that way.

I help a woman who has lots of sharp knives, tons of them in the dishpan awaiting me, covered with suds, and interpret them as hidden hostilities. I think that is what I sensed about her from the very beginning, as a surprising uncommon wariness has always taken hold of me when I’m helping her.

One time, I helped a woman who had tons of pots and pans. She lived in a tiny apartment and had more pots and pans than I had ever seen, it seemed 100 pots and pans. What were they all for? She wished me to scrub the bottoms of all of them — very strange, what did it all mean? It was kind of creepy, Hansel and Gretel.

And, she was always boiling some grayish bone or something in one of the big pots. Something about it all caused me to immediately after work take all but one of my pans to the thrift store. I kept only one pan.

One day, she said, “You forgot your water bottle yesterday, it’s over there, by the stove.” She was as ominous as a fairy tale witch with her casual pronouncement, and I knew instantly to pour the water out ... I didn’t want to be anything like her, and scanned her home for any possible similarities: I noted the shelf on the wall. It had things on it that seemed frivolous or presumptuous. I thought about the shelf: it hung on the wall, which yielded the understanding that it was an “unsupported” shelf, i.e., her presumptions about her self/shelf were unsupported.

I, too, had an unsupported shelf in my kitchen and removed it that very day. I set it out by the side of the road and it disappeared. Later, I found a wonderful five-foot-tall bookcase that juts out only about four inches and so fits into the kitchen without obstructing. Though at first glance the things upon it might appear frivolous, they are all things that promote function, and I only now realize this upon considering them: a couple of lovely old tea cups holding small hardware items, spare keys, etc., a couple of crucial documents needed in the immediate future that I need to know where to find, a small, framed, antique picture of cat art, and a small collection of dvds ...

At any rate, if these things speak in any way to my self-concept, at least it can be truly said that my self-concept is well supported. (Not that I am aware of having a self-concept, except by other documents, pictures and milestones from the past that actually literally attest to my life’s progress.)

Patti Morey lives in Ashland.

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