restricted access Sunday Calls
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43 Sunday Calls The nurse calls to tell me on Sunday evenings how he’s doing.        How he’s holding his own in front of the window with a thousand channels behind the one that saves his screen with snow, fish houses, and eagles.      How the days hang above the ice as vast recycled pages on which he writes in invisible ink. How the sun arcs across the sky, then breaks like a plate above the horizon.         How the temperature drops below zero at dusk, then continues to fall till morning. In this way she teaches me how to speak to him in his sleep at his home in Minnesota, which is the same, she says, as talking to a friend you’ve never met, but grown close to nonetheless from hearing his voice.              I hear the snow falling as she holds the phone outside the window. Silence is the sound of snow falling on snow, I think as I listen to the flakes inside the air before she closes the window.       “I’m thinking of walleye in their sleep,” I tell my father.        “Of catching them as they dream, then throwing them back in the hole I drilled by hand with the auger you gave me as a child, whose handle is stained with blood from my turning it so many times into the ice of Bad Medicine.”         I wait for her voice to return, then say, “Just this for now since any more would disappear the lake inside his head on which he builds a house for us to fish throughout the winter.” deNiord text-2.indd 43 11/10/10 10:40 AM deNiord text-2.indd 44 11/10/10 10:40 AM This page intentionally left blank. ...


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