My mother is helping me hang wallpaper in the kitchen of my first house. Eagles, oak leaves and acorns march one-two, one-two around the walls, back to our starting point above the window. But here’s a dilemma—we’ll have to put two eagles side-by-side, or else two oak leaves. To me, either arrangement looks glaringly wrong. But my mother cheerfully pastes up two eagles in a row, taking care to select a left-facing eagle where the pattern calls for right.
a circle inked on white paper— imperfect open to the drift of stardust and ashes