A 2 year old in a 1 inch frame 


Anne Lamott is the next author I’m reading (“Bird by Bird”). She keeps a 1×1 inch frame on her desk to remind herself to describe things in small chunks. If you tried to write War and Peace in a single setting, you would die. When I was a toddler, my Mom thought I was mute and worried I wasn’t developing right because I didn’t say “baba” or “dada” or “mama”.

Spring sunshine made the kitchen glow. The golden grape pattern wallpaper cheered. Our home was clean and smelled like ammonia on floor wash days and of bleach on laundry days. I just finished breakfast and was nervous in my high chair. I practiced English in my head. Twin language was easy, at least for my brother and me. YouTube “twins talking”. It makes great sense and is quite elegant and Elvish. But English. Ugh. Patterns and Rules. I had to get it right. Mom was doing dishes moving the portable dishwasher to the sink with constructional magic; her back turned. I cleared my baby throat…”Mother, may I please have a glass of water?” She spun around with saucer eyes “WHAT did you say?!” If I had known “Shit!” I would have said that because it’s so handy. I repeated “Mother, may I please have a glass of water?” She dropped the Tupperware. Gobsmacked. Those were my first words.

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