We have only lived in this house for one year. It is small and pink. There is one bathroom with a faucet the kids can't turn on and a small deep bathtub. In the back, a bushy Meyer lemon tree grows beside the jasmine we brought here, and in the corner of the yard, a tall fruitless avocado. We will leave the tree house with swinging ladder that Ben built in the umbrella'ed pepper tree, where the humming birds also love to perch. We will leave the swing the kids fly to the branches on, and the fire pit we've gathered around.
Tonight I am packing my studio -- the musty little work room my landlord allowed me to take over momentarily. It smells old and as dusty as it is. There are rusty hatchets, spades, rakes, and shovels hanging on the wall, jars of screws and nails , a worn work bench that has become my table. I've tacked up fabrics over his shelves of boxes and paint buckets and lined the others with books and journals.
Through the windows I can see the patio lit with strings of white bulbs. The air is cool but not too cold in this drafty space that I'm slowly stacking with boxes.
Today I bought my plane ticket, my one way plane ticket. Pressing "purchase" on the American Airlines screen, though it locked me into the security of a date, though I've been planning to do this all along, unlocked something in me that keeps leaking. I am leaving. We are leaving. What will life look like? The closer we get to the marked box on the calendar, the more certain I am that I cannot imagine.