I’d never heard this quiet voice of her, this slow talking, this way of speaking which seemed to be attuned to an inside rhythm matchless in quietness and slowness, as if coming from beyond the walls of the house and the yard and the walls of all other houses and from beyond all Aron Awa and from beyond all the mountains
The problem with me, he says, is that my parallel is too nice, thereby making me too mean. Apparently it’s because I clamshell up even though we live a 10-minute walk from a pho place with the best Bun Bo Hue in Sunnyvale, because even pho can’t drag me out of this house, from under its short ceiling that feels closer to squashing me into the ground every morning, from the rails of the balcony overlooking the street where I can hear gunshots every several nights even though this area is supposed to be super gentrified, full of software engineers and their 4K monitors.
Once upon a time there lived a woman who, instead of hearing what people actually said, heard thoughts that swarmed in people’s heads. In her youth, this woman did not even know that what she heard were other people’s thoughts.
My husband looked at her, then at me—it was a look of amazement and pride. See what our child can do? He wasn’t thinking, say, that she was about to scald herself with hot water.