Friday, April 29, 2022

Week in Seven Words #581

This covers the week of 3/7/21 - 3/13/21.

ambulate
In the largely empty bookstore, a teenaged boy walks in a slow, wide circle while reading out loud to himself through a mask.

electrifying
A riveting sax solo brings joy to this corner of the park.

iciness
Today, there's frost in their relationship. It keeps their sentences clipped and cold.

institutionalized
Two seals circle the small tank without pause or release, as the demented bells jangle on the hour.

optical
First new pair of glasses in a while, and I like how they look.

sparking
A crackling cloud of seagulls electrified by the promise of food.

tired
Crusty buildings, haggard strip malls. The brownness of late winter and early spring, everywhere brown, waiting to be relieved by flowers, leaves, anything green.

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Week in Seven Words #580

This covers the week of 2/28/21 - 3/6/21.

compulsions
We're caught in traps of compulsive behavior – web surfing, phone scrolling, screen watching.

deceptively
What looks like ice on the lake is only the glare of sunlight.

enlarged
The eyes always come out too large in the drawings. Large, placid ellipses.

held
His body shakes with his need to talk, to have someone listen.

liquefy
A land melting into mud and puddles that seem like ponds.

retrospect
Months from now, I sense this worry will seem superficial, a distraction from larger problems.

warmth
A golden retriever finds us as we sit shoulder-to-shoulder on the sunlit bench.

Thursday, February 17, 2022

Week in Seven Words #579

This covers the week of 2/21/21 - 2/27/21.

anticipation
Two people at opposite ends of a room. They're holding books, but they aren't reading. When will they talk to each other?

arrangements
It's the first time I've been to synagogue in a year. The room downstairs has been organized into islands of chairs. Some islands have one chair, others two. The service is quieter.

coveting
Birds taking off and landing on the feeders, while nearby a chunky squirrel stares, waiting his chance.

mud
The slip squish of mud. Everywhere mud. Most people grumble, but one kid is discovering the joy of a puddle in a field caked in mud and slush. He's not the one who will be washing his clothes later, which is part of what makes him happy.

protected
Sitting in the pool of warmth from an outdoor heater, the cold air pressing in but pushed back.

skin-deep
Our relationship has cooled from genuine warmth to superficial friendliness.
 
tedious
Tired of online events. The small, detached faces, the audio that fails, the lack of energy, the lure of other browser tabs.

Week in Seven Words #578

This covers the week of 2/14/21 - 2/20/21.

ache
We used to sit in this room with its floor-to-ceiling bookshelves and the lamplight on the red couch.

belly
They don't have sleds, but they do have bellies, so they slide down the hill head first, eyes squinting against the dazzle of sunlight on snow.

glimpses
Beyond the dense branches there's light, white and faintly purple.

moved
The silence of snow falling. At the bus stop, he says a brief prayer.

perching
She's gained access to the roof, and from there, she feeds birds.

unbroken
The fact that I have a good night's sleep is worth commenting on. I don't take it for granted.

wobble
Without his job, his days have turned to jello.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Week in Seven Words #577

This covers the week of 2/7/21 - 2/13/21.

dork
The role she's been asked to audition for is an improbable one: the effortlessly gorgeous, socially awkward female nerd who's such a dork but never really says or does anything unattractive, she's just, you know, a dork with glasses and fashionable heels.

icy
The pond is clinking with ice, the shores crusty with slush and mud.

knotty
I meet him for the first time beside a tree with a heart-shaped knot.

lacework
Low branches turned to lacework by the snow.

mafia
The head and torso of the snowman are propped up on a bench, like a grim warning from the snowman mafia. ("Double-cross us, and you too will be disassembled before you melt.")

timeworn
It's cute how the author thinks that pairing a character in his 60s with a woman in her 20s is edgy.

unhelpful
"My problems," she says, "are about not asking for help when I need it, and getting the kind of help that holds me back."

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Week in Seven Words #576

This covers the week of 1/31/21 - 2/6/21.

complaints
As the elevators fail to come for 15, then 20 minutes, I speak to a neighbor from down the hall who's waiting with me. Over the years, our conversation has never gone beyond greetings. Now we talk about how her ceiling is flaking as if it has a bad case of dandruff. And we talk about the pandemic (wouldn't be a real conversation without pandemic talk).

micturating
A dog urinates on the fallen head of a snowman.

pleasant
Sitting with all of them is like hosting a talk show panel. I turn to each, ask questions, and give them time to speak. I serve as a moderator for interruptions and insults. There's no need for me to share anything about myself.

slush
The center of the frozen lake has softened into dark, slushy water, like a pond inside the lake. Some geese are at its gray edges.

snowfall
After the billows of the blizzard, there's a mesmerizing gentle snowfall.

surfeit
They take a shopping bag full of crumbled bread to the lake, and within minutes, a goose-duck metropolis has sprung up around them.

youthfully
After the dog's leg injury, they've set up a ramp for her against the couch. But she still tries to jump on and off, her energy at odds with her body.

Sunday, January 23, 2022

Week in Seven Words #575

This covers the week of 1/24/21 - 1/30/21.

crumbs
Instead of buying a pandemic puppy, she has gone outdoors more frequently to feed pigeons, easily summoned by crumbs.

domestic
Through video chat, I've become familiar with the view of his burgundy couch, the cat kneading a cushion before settling in.

ethereal
A special blue-white winter light on bare branches.

pianissimo
A fumbled song on piano keys in an unlit room.

subvert
Heavy metal drives her anxious thoughts away. But they come back in her sleep, bringing her to consciousness on a rising wave of dread.

sweetens
While working, I pick at a platter of figs, apricots, dates, and almonds, and I feel as if there should be palm fronds over my desk.

topiary
He's tried to trim the shrub to look like a cat. It looks like a vaguely feline creature emerging from a terrible green fog. But I like the effort.