Saturday, December 31, 2005

Drag these broken wings
Through the lonely streets of town

So alone
It hurts to know just how alone I am
Without your song
So sing to me

Does your ocean ever sleep?
Do your stars ever dream?
Close your eyes and think of me
And I'll be waiting
I'll be dancing on the waves
Whenever you need to find a place
That feels like home

Lord I've cried
And I've screamed
Through salt-filled skies
And growing old

So alone
It hurts to know just how alone I am
Without your song
So sing to me...

-LN, without your song

These are the words to a song that I think is maybe one of the most sadly beautiful songs I know. Unfortunately it loses some of it's beauty without the music that helps to make it so beautiful. Thank you so much Colin for this wonderful CD. I think of you when I hear it.

It was srange how when the train would start up, I could feel no sensation that we were actually moving. The only way I could tell that we indeed were was by watching the lights outside slowly slide past the window, gradually picking up speed, until I could feel, as well as see, that we were moving. I loved the gentle swaying of the train, sometimes up and down as well as side to side.

After arriving back in Melitopol, I stood at the busstop across the street from the station, watching a few birds trying to fly. They were situated in the air above the house across the road, wildly flapping their wings, but not going anywhere. Ocasionally one would get tired and stop flapping for a moment. But I think it would get scared and quickly pick it up again. Stationary flapping birds against a sky streaked with gray purple clouds, the wind finding it's way up my sleeves causing me to shiver as I waited.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Since beginning my studies of the Russian language, I have learned a few things. For instance, the name Vera means faith, and the name Nadia is a diminuitive of Nadezhda, which means hope. Also, the word soviet means advice or counsel, which I didn't know, but thought was interesting. There are other things too that I can't think of right now.

The electricity here isn't always very consistent. Sometimes the power goes out for no reason, for any length of time. And often the lights are flickery, making my eyes sore if I'm trying to read. A couple weeks ago, while I was writing a letter, the lights went out. Nina came into my room and crawled up onto my bed beside me to keep me company in the dark. All I could make out of her was the pale outline of her chubby face as she rambled on about the things she had done that day. I understood some of it, but not everything. And I was listening to the way she can't say her r's, and often says t or l instead, and how she has a bit of a lisp too. And then the lights came on, and she ran off with my pen. So I had to find another one before I could resume my letter writting.

I didn't notice when the leaves fell off the trees. But I remember being startled one day not long ago when I realized that all the trees were bare, save a few shrivelled brown leaves that still dangled here and there. Some days are cold and the puddles are frozen. Those days the wood inside the outhouse is covered in little sparkley crystals.

On Sunday I was kneeling on the wooden floor inside a little "house of prayer", with a dozen or so others, mostly little old wrinkly women with thick scarves tied around their heads under their chins. The walls in the cold little house were decorated with plastic flowers and pieces of cloth containing fragments of Bible verses and very Ukranian-looking flowers. And as they prayed one after the other, I felt full. Full of everything, but I didn't know exactly what.

Today I miss my dreadlocks and my schloggers.