my favorite sound

Dear Ethan, 

Today is one day closer to October. I can feel the chill in the air, and am soaking up any rays of sunshine that I can. They are turning more amber by the day, and then before you know it, we’ll have the clean, white, radiant light of winter. I heard that the extraordinarily rainy summer is beckoning a long, hard winter.

To be honest, I’m not sure I can bear that if it were true. 

Yesterday, I had deep and strange memories. Of this linoleum rec room with speckled brown dots where we held church functions at St. Michael’s. Memories of playing Mary Magdalene in Christmas reenactments during Sunday school. Kneeling before the Stations of the Cross and obsessing over all the textural details of the faces; noticing the dark wood of the classroom doors and the shadowy corridors that led you there.

These memories alongside remembering my Tio Juan, who was born without a hand, and how he’d always lean to one side and put it in his pocket. I never once thought to consider how this may have made his life harder.       

I listened to a podcast on the way home from work the other day—on the most beautiful sound

For me, it’s the chirping of crickets in the night, with a window partially open, so you could hear them sing. My sisters and I used to pass each other pillows to stuff into the air vents of the air conditioner so that we could smash our faces into them before we fell asleep. The cold side of the pillow was a joy that I’ve since forgotten. The warmness of the three of us, the cold pillows, and the chirping in the night—the vastness and great possibilities of a Texas summer.          

I guess I’m a summer person.

Trips to Wal-Mart with my mom, making an assembly line of tortas and giving myself the greenest pieces of salted avocado, fighting over the last glass of coke (usually, my mom or Jenny would win, because they liked it the most). My mom would let her ice melt into the glass and she’s drink it flat through a straw. 

In the early morning, the crickets would intermingle with the joyous songbirds, and we’d hear the early morning floof sound as my mom aired out the fitted sheet and tried to smooth it over perfectly, only to watch the three of us jump into it mid-floof. 

The joys of summer I’ve very much internalized. That being said, the anticipation of the leaves changing color, pies in the oven, sweaters the color of sunset coming out of the closet—it is the greatest gift of New England, to give us a mind-bending fall to prepare us for the clean planes and angles of winter. I guess springtime is no slouch either. Seasons are beautiful! 


 p.s. In other news, a (fiction) story of mine was published recently. The story is here in the form of a podcast, and my author interview follows. If you digest better with text, the transcripts can be found here. Enjoy! 

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