The wind tonight pushes against my house and begins to move us–the walls and my belongings and me–east toward the Hudson. The house sails atop the soil. Beneath the floorboards the rocks grind and grab and gnash. Our passing spooks the Nightcrawlers who give up their soil ingestions and dig deeper in panic, and the local gangs of deer snort at us and stamp their hoofs demanding a toll. We are headed to the high cliff overlooking the river, myself and all that I own.
The wind is hurricane force. It blasts through the open windows. The houseplants shake and bow to the floor. A leathery-trunked Draconia catches a strong draft and is swept out into the night, pot and all–it’s shiny leaves writhing and tossing, it suddenly gone into blackness, sucked into the void. My bed rattles and lifts six inches off the floor, then down, banging hard, then up again, then down, like the echoing claps of a .30-.30 caliber rifle, like my pillow is a gunstock and my sleeping head presses hard for fear of a vicious recoil.
The wind leans into us through the night, as we slide unnoticed through the neighborhood, past other houses, across their yards, to the river Hudson. Only the insomnia babies standing in their cribs waiting for their mamas can see us floating by like clouds, and the babies can say nothing, only wave their pacifiers and drool on their bedsheets. But we all know they would come if they could escape their little prisons; how they would climb out their bedroom windows wearing onesie pajamas and crawl onto my porch, and make new beds inside my hanging flower baskets. And there, swinging in their leafy cribs, the babies would babble delighted and their drool would water the petunias, as we continued to move through the night.
We come to the edge, to the brink, and the house begins to tip, one side there is the land and one side there is empty air, with the river roaring somewhere far below. The room tilts and I make noises to wake, but fail, and the clothes in the closet fall and clatter their hangers broken to the floor, and the shelves empty themselves, and the couch becomes self-aware and opens the front door and vaults toward safety, leaving a guilt-stricken cushion sliding across the floor. So even my belongings have abandoned me now. What a disgrace I am, I think, to have my house fall into the river with me in my bed in my underwear.
Where is my father? the porch light screws are loose and need fixed–that is the last thought. And over, pushed by the wind, we go.