After our return from Turkey (you can read about how the puppets handled that right here, over there and just down there as well) and my Father’s passing, there was a month of fog and gloom – and just general stuck-ness.
Even Karagöz moped a bit, but just a bit.
And then, when the family could gather, there was a wonderful memorial service, and somehow I felt I could move on again. And move I did, with the dog, right on down to our nest-shack in Provincetown. I just got the heck on out as fast as I could – leaving M. behind to work between long weekends with us.
But, I found I had moved on to not much – my mind wasn’t capable of much. It just felt like being a recluse, living in seclusion and shutting down. It wasn’t, Perihan Hanım (my fairy godmother puppet) reminds me, “feeling like” doing that, it was just all I could do. And
For the first three weeks, I spent my days alternately staring at the white-raftered ceiling (which turns from sunny white to neon blue at dusk) and the ever-changing blue-grey-green bay out of my window.
Books left for my summer reading lay limp in the humidity, untouched by human hands that could (but didn’t) bring them into mind-life.
The laptop remained encased in a click-closure.
The freshly made bed was untouched – in favor of the couch and the breeze by that night-light window.
Food carefully picked for a healthy retreat remained in the fridge, passed by for cranberry juice and crackers with many glasses of rabbit’s blood Turkish Rize Çayı from the by-now very worried little chorus of dancing ladies during the day – and herbal Ada Çayı during the nights.
“We think,” the ladies said in quiet, demure unison, “that perhaps you would have felt better sooner if you had followed the Turkish burial tradition – the one about three days?” Sighing and wringing their hands, the little cenghi then felt badly, saying “we apologize, we know this is not very culturally sensitive of us, we know you have a different tradition, but we overheard this in M.’s subconscious mind.”
“I agree, little ladies,” I demurred, while blowing on the tea glass between my fingertips, “you may be onto something there, but I am glad we waited for the family to be around in order to go through it all together.” Feeling a slight bit of closure, I stood upright if for not other reason than to just move – to change things up a bit. And as I did, a copy of the Provincetown Banner newspaper M. had picked up the previous weekend fell to the floor.
And as if the universe had offered me an invitation, there it was, an announcement about Provincetown’s Carnival 2012 – with “Space Odyssey” as the theme. And, instantly, I knew what I had to do. I knew it in phrase form before the vision appeared in my mind screen – the phrase just tumbled out of my mouth to the dog’s curious ears – “Ottoman Space Invaders.” Safiye Rakkase, the vainglorious dancing girl puppet, jumped up onto the coffee table with a banshee scream of joy – “FINALLY – she said – COSTUMES TO MAKE!”
As if a puppet myself, controlled by Safiye Rakkase’s glimmering puppet strings, I sat up on the couch, googled “silver lamé fabric” and immediately ordered 12 yards before heading out to take a walk in the night sky.
To be continued…
- Approaching death in a Turkish-American relationship: Is it time to stir the irmik helvası? (slowly-by-slowly.com)
- As Activists Gather at the RNC, Cops Ban… Puppets? (alternet.org)