Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Grand Canyon Suite ( a visit to the dentist)

Diminutive was never an aspect of our mother's personality.

Intellectually robust, dignified, and not afraid of much. I've always viewed our mom as I've imagined the Grand Canyon: perilously beautiful and deep. Resistant... Challenging... Difficult.

A timeless, rugged elegance with pink and mauve undertones.

The wheelchair backs into the dentist's examining room. A soft-bottomed, black spine-crusher with her elbows made chicken wings... Being accommodated?

Any movement makes her lavender eyes very large. She remains in the chair, seated... Pressed and vulnerable?

Her tiny, hammer-toed feet are swathed in a pair of fuzzy-chenille socks. Hot-pink Mary-Janes... Lost pride and dignity?

The upper front tooth went with the lost lower partial... practical humility, overly expended?

Tall and silver... Dr. Sullivan.

A straight-up wit from an era who still appreciates lithe and swarthy. He's easily seventy-six. He's been the family's only dentist for forty years. Both kind and smart he's wielding a zesty, lemon grass charm.

He's effectively flirting with her. Mom's eyes have begun to mist. Her mouth is confused and trembling. Her chin is chattering from stimulus overload.

He remembers 1968 when she first arrived in town and is now asking after each of her six adult kids, those he worked on. He frames any question with the answer conveniently built in.
He recalls her many post-retirement efforts with honest admiration.

She's only required to speak with her eyes. Those mercury quick pools of light are sparkling confidence and intensity.

Our Mama, diminished?

She's become capable of being ineffably fetching. She's charmed, and utterly fathomless and is only continuing to gain in grandness as attrition makes for added depth.

Sure kept a great dentist; the one who's stayed for over half her life.

Silk sleeved and turning from within, she's slowly winding down.

And there seems to be no end in sight. She's making a divine descent, enjoying the interesting view.

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