“…she had found peace in that house
where memories materialized thrugh
the strength of implacable evocation
and walked like human beings through
the cloistered rooms.”
— Gabriel Garcia Marquez
One Hundred Years of Solitude
I found this quote tacked to the wall by my computer. It’s the only quote in Mr. Wicker, as I took this idea of memories materializing and made it Mr. Wicker’s special magic from The Library of Lost Childhood Memories. As I’ve been boxing up 9-1/2 years of life in this apartment, a wild storm of these evocations whips around me. If I linger, my muscles tighten and my head fogs — not from exhaustion but from the emotional assault. I came here on January 15, 1997. Less than one month later, my life was in complete ruin from a misfortune I won’t describe. And as if that weren’t enough, on April 11, 1996 — the exact day of my Saturn Return, which happened in the House of Health and Work — I was declared totally temporarily disabled from a work injury. That disability lasted for years.
The subsequent “extra-natural” activity in this apartment was unbelievable. Poltergeist-like incidents that used to only plague my ex-husband now took to frightening and unsettling me, as if I had turned on myself. Eventually, it died down, but not after it sent my one boyfriend howling when the cordless phone jumped off the receiver before his eyes. There were years and years of turmoil, occasionally soothed by the incredible friendships I developed, my writing and my sweet cats (who still hate you, by the way). Now, as I say goodbye to these “cloistered rooms” that are so imbued with me and the spirits raised here, I can’t help but wonder if the walls are sighing with relief: “At last! That incredibly strange girl is leaving. Now we can have some quiet.” Yet in some ways the walls protected me in every way I needed when I was so very vulnerable. There might be some affection there after all.
I never thought I’d find love, a whole day without hand pain, or success of any kind. But for now, the solitude is over.