Today's prompt was to write about a list. I decided to write a to-do list for Demeter trying to get out of bed in the morning, reckoning with a sort of existential crisis. This needs some development, but I like the idea.
Demeter's Morning To-Do List, April
Get out of bed.
That’s harder than it seems, you know.
The barren winter
Of my mood
Pulls me here, keeps me in a kind of stasis.
Think of all the millions of reasons
I should thrust the covers from my body,
Ignite the morning—
The hungry bees,
The slumbering bears,
The sweet, sweet, sweet
Smell of pollen filling the breeze.
Think of all the million reasons I shouldn’t.
Another cycle of loss begins.
Another spring to create.
Another set of blossoms that must die.
Reason with myself. It’s for the greater good.
Imagine all of the people out there
Depending on my joy—
The farmers, sunbathers,
Children still stuck in their winter coats.
All I have to do is get up.
All I have to do is force a smile.
All I have to do is try.
Get out of bed. Finally, get out of bed.
Comb December from my hair,
Brush out the snow from my eyes,
Let the morning sun warm the frigid heart
That beats with sadness in my chest.
Wash the hibernation from your face.
Brush the death from your teeth.
Mask it with mint.
Dress your tired body in a floral sundress.
Slip on flip flops.
Put the kettle on the stove
And steep some jasmine tea.
It’s spring, April, Demeter,
I tell myself. I have to clean this house.
I have to put on a happy face.
I have to try to feel a little joy.
She’ll come, spring, if I let her,
If I can muster up the strength
To face this day, to let this cycle
Of joy and unbearable loss unfold again.
Fall back in bed.
Let the sheets embrace your despair,
cradle you in thoughts of ice.
Deal with this existential crisis.
Consider never getting out of bed again.
Call your therapist. Cry.
Embrace the melting.
Get out of bed. Find the strength
to tilt the axis
Of the world, my mood.
Finally, face the sun.