The broken car window a short reflection and here I am trying to be positive.
Someone broke into our car. They broke a rear window and a small part of my heart. Seeing your private stuff lying all over the parking lot makes you want to yell at someone, or hide and be cautious of every person you come across.
All they took was some change gate remote, few minor things, and a pair of inexpensive sunglasses that I had just bought from a street vender for 30 rands one of those fake Nikes that says made in China. Could it have been worth it for them? Instead of attending a lunch for two friends, who just moved to the area, I spend the afternoon cleaning up pieces of glass from the car and flapping only as queen can always thinking that I am quite butch. Slowly separating what you want to keep from what to toss now keep a straight mind please, into the trash bin. You call the auto shops to find out how much the damage would cost after you get the price the second round of cursing starts begging with the sixth letter of the alphabet and ending with a science formal SH1T yes SH ONE T, and how quickly they can take a look. When the best price is an hour away and first available appointment a couple of days away, you tell yourselves that it will be WELL AND ALL MANNER OF THINGS SHALL BE WELL. The car with the broken window will be safe in your unsafe parking lot. What else is there to take? I empty it of all my scattered belongings and wonder how did this latex end up here must have been a bad experience if you can’t remember it and leave it unlocked, so anyone who wants to get in doesn’t need to struggle.
As you are cleaning, you can’t help wonder what type of a person would do this? And if you got hold of him the little sixth letter of the alphabet Aside from being thoughtless and having no concern for other people’s properties, they would have to be desperate, or possibly homeless always be charitable said the priest in his Sunday sermon. Since there was nothing that was visible in the car, they really took a chance in breaking the window to see what they could find. They also must’ve been really scared because they did it in a hurry, not even bothering to close the doors afterward maybe that latex article did. As you imagine their life, in all your fury, you try not to curse them in your mind because they probably have it bad enough as it is. You wish you could sit them down and tell them not do this because these things have a way of getting back at us karma is a cruel bitch. And if they’re already having issues, they can’t afford any more karma debt. You hope they come out of their current situation, and almost wish they had stolen some of the good CD’s, maybe the chants of Taize, Buddhist and Gregorian because they need it more than you do.
You sweep the last pile of glass into a dustpan and pick up a “smile card” that had fallen on the floor from your car. People use these to do random acts of kindness and leave the card behind to ask the recipient to pay-it-forward to others. You stop all your all you doing because it dawns on you that no one must have ever done a random act of kindness for this person. This person probably does not know how it feels to truly receive something. If they did, they would know the joy that an unexpected kindness brings to the heart. They would also know that it would not feel good to receive an unwarranted unkind act like this. Gratefulness, that important part life and Gratefulness for everyone in your life, and for constantly being wrapped in their love. You wonder how you and society have contributed to this person who feels the need affirmative shop, to break a car window to get some change. You forgive them wholeheartedly. You wonder how you can contribute to a world where no one is lacking for what they really need.
Although your heart forgives this person, your mind is cautious and it doesn’t want to be caught off-guard again. As I enter my apartment, I make sure that the door is locked in case they took your address. I get up at night and check it once again. In my sleepiness I step into dog piss and go off the handle again, I decide that I will get a bolt on my door, so no one can break-in. The next day, I feel dreadful that I had this thought. One should not allow your heart to close-up and become small by something as tiny, and stupid as a broken car window. You remind yourself that this is a part of life, and this is not personal.
Out of habit, I reach for the small compartment above my head for the sunglasses. To my surprise they are there! I do a double-take and feel them a couple of times. How could this be? I try to remember if you could be mistaken. This is just not possible because I had checked three times as I cleaned the car since they were just bought on that day. It was completely empty. And you were so disappointed that they were already gone. Maybe they accidentally took some of the smile cards and realized that there was an actual person who might miss those glasses, since that was the only personal item taken. I am relieved to know that they have a conscience. It makes me hopeful for their future.
I feel that a hand has been extended, and an apology has been made. And I wish I could reach out and give the person who did this a hug, for a very long time, and let them know that everything will be all right. Maybe, like all of us, they’re just trying, and being human the best that they can. And I on my journey have been all too human as you will discover.
BROKEN CAR WINDOW
I am tired of my dreams’ dark interiors
and the family ghosts who inhabit them.
It is Spring, and the man I love has brought home
cherries and watermelon, the way my father used to
when I was a child, bags of groceries
jostling each other in the back seat of the Chev van,
and we were supposed to go running out to the driveway
to carry them in with both arms.
Downstairs, the rooms
sing, laughter and sun moving easily
from one to the next, a jar of white peonies
on the kitchen sill, a tawny cat
stretched out in glory on the dining room table.
Clink of ice cubes in tea,
hoops of wetness on coasters,
I will bring back these small things,
the freckles on my mother’s arm,
how the neighbourhood was golden
that hour after supper, when the table was cleared
and there was nothing to regret. I will empty
this hurt from my heart
until light fills each chambers, until there is room
for everyone from the house of humanity to enter
and know they are welcome they are family.