the beginning

by ann


For the past few days I’ve been wanting to write here but my mind has been challenged daily with new things that it has been wrangled into a silent stupor. Long dreamy posts are a thing of the past, friends, but with some luck posts will still be had.

See, my class of one hundred and twenty eight has been scooped up and tossed into an ocean of material and I, dear readers, am treading furiously to keep afloat. What has flustered me the most has been the overwhelming assumption that we should just know. Complaints are useless, rebutted with stories of someone who had it worse and how first year is the easiest. They are wearing us down with three hour lectures and constant testing so that we crumble and can be remolded into their liking; professional schools must be the geniuses behind hazing.

While the complaints are there, the excitement is as well. Perhaps not in the sixth hour of back-to-back lectures but, when I hunch over a nub of a plastic tooth, spending hours building it up, tearing it down, tweaking and fixing, taking two days to complete it and wait, petrified, for a particularly difficult professor to grade it.. When he signs off and praises me, I am electrified.

*The picture above is of my glass terrarium atop a latticework furnace hugging my small bay window; it holds two things: a marimo and a tiny boxwood tree.