Edmonton Dreams Don’t Like


photo by Martino Pietropoli

Jan. 7
An office building last and an office building first. Two women in pink party dresses, one wore fuchsia gloves, went somewhere, couldn’t see, but was with a man unknown. Was in the office building finding lover and into a doctor’s office to get examined and the gurney had pillows smashed and the lover lay down with the custodian of the building. The doctor watched the lover lay his head on the custodian’s chest. Then in the Glenora house full of boxes. Then in a car. Driving. Parking. An office building up a big hill. Back up down the street. Question: Who is in the car? At a park (green) there was a softball game going on and the ball was hitting the car. A tall man leans on the open window. It seems a lot of boxes. Replied in profile dirty little secret. Still have boxes from Highlands. Driven backwards into the playground. Juxtaposed: a flurry of clothing against the car. Wait. Away. Careful not to hit anything on the paved road. Not frightened when buckling on shoes. Black shoes with straps.

Jan. 8
Grass. Looking out a window at a white car on grass. The basement was full of people. Sitting on couches. Unknown faces. The basement was grey concrete. Question: Was there ever a TV? There was a party. An orange flowered dress. Red hair. Don’t want to go to a party the next day. Something about not getting along. Car. Follow. Tell. Crowd in the kitchen. A long hug. Home. Cellphone call. Rough cotton purple hippy purse. Hello? Remember entering the contest? Yes. Winner! It was a nice entry but colleagues recommend that at least one of the extra winners just has to be a woman.

Jan. 9
Spent tea lights burnt matches and toilet paper in a white toilet bowl. At work. Gathered in front of a cubicle. All the lights had been shut off. The boss finally caught us and threw an Archie Bunker. Then MacEwan University. Walked through the halls. Question: Is this the room? Found. A tall man blocking the door. He was wearing a blue-black-grey tweed coat. He turned around and was old. Anxious. Into the room. Question: Is it in black and white? A film at the front of the theatre. Question: Which film? Just another room. There was a party and at the table there was a ham but the ham wasn’t. It wasn’t but looked like it. The table had food with a large ham at the back of the table a clock and a toaster all in a plastic bag. There was a big plate of meat pulled apart it seemed in slices but then the bag was gone. An emptied lunch salad bag. Then in a kitchen rinsing out a plastic spring mix container from the fridge. The kitchen was in a supermarket line-up. On the kitchen counter straddling the sink rinsing off the bigger salad leaves salvaged. Thick and green and reddish purple and then back in the kitchen. The door is open. Don’t like Kelowna.

Wendy McGrath has written three novels and two books of poetry. Her most recent poetry collection is A Revision of Forward (NeWest Press 2015), the culmination of a decade-long collaboration with printmaker Walter Jule. She is currently at work on the final novel in her Santa Rosa trilogy as well as another poetry collection and collection of essays. Find her on Twitter @McGrathWendy and Instagram @wendyannmcgrath.