Sunday, March 05, 2006

Glitter Me This

Glitter glue.

That's the answer my dream gave me. I read that if you pose a question before going to sleep, your dream will give you the answer.

So the other night I asked, "How can I make a living as a writer?"

Now, I've tried this technique before to no avail. Instead of finding answers, I dream that I'm late for a test and can't find the room and drop my #2 pencils into an abyss...I'm sure you've all had similar dreams.

What did people dream before school was invented? I imagine an early Celtic man waking up his wife and saying, "Then I went to kill the sabertooth tiger and instead of a spear I only had a blade of grass. I just feel so unprepared to move the giant stones into a circle tomorrow. We don't have the right equipment."

But the other night, I bolted up in my bed, thinking the technique had worked.

"Brilliant. Brilliant," I thought, fumbling for a pen. "An answer to my question. Glitter glue."

"Wait a second," I thought. "That's not an answer. That's an art supply."

And not a very good one at that. Glitter glue couldn't fasten two pieces of paper together even with the help of duct tape. It is purely decorative.

It's purpose is to eliminate the need for loose glitter, which spreads like germs.

If your child has ever brought home artwork with glitter on it, you know that specks wind up in the cat's eye, the baby's ear, the casserole you're cooking, your coffee, and at the back of your tongue. The sparkles multiply like gremlins, forming piles of flamboyant dust in every corner of your house.

With glitter glue, that doesn't happen.

This revelation would have been helpful 10 years ago, but now the stuff's already been invented. What was the point of this dream?

So I came up with this poem.

Glitter glue can't hold our house together.
Stop the roof from leaking
Or patch the pipes that break.

Glitter glue can't keep our kids from climbing
Stick their shoes to tree limbs they stand on
Or patch their wounds when they fall.

It can't keep expenses from flying away from us
Our paychecks from getting lost in the mail.

It can't patch holes in jeans
or keep clothes in drawers instead of on the floor.

Glitter glue can't keep words like
"Poopy head" or
"I'm going to sue your butt"
from tumbling out of our little boys' mouths.

But it keeps us together.
Like flecks of red, green and purple
Swimming in neon green glue.

Glitter glue is like love.
One is good at holding sparkles together
But nothing else.

Love is good at holding families together
but not much else.

Not much else matters anyway.
Clothes can wear and fade.
Paperwork can blow away.

Everything falls away.
But glitter glue keeps the important things
from being swept under the rug.

Somehow, I don't think this poem is the direction my dream was pointing me in. Frankly, I feel unprepared to interpret the dream. I feel another test nightmare coming on.


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