Amy Butcher on Still Things


Butcher considers the smaller things all around us that keep us moving @ Brevity.

I liked ice-skating mostly because I didn’t understand it. I just pulled the stiff leather up to my knees, stood upright, wobbled back and forth until I began to move and then, in motion, I felt a thing that is not the right thing but I can convince myself otherwise. I think, This is a miracle, what I am doing.

But he wanted to talk to me about pressure. He said, You move because the ice melts into water. You glide.
I wasn’t gliding. I was wobbling, barely, on a rink beside a movie theater. This was an indoor rink. We were in the middle of a mall. Across the way, a group of teenage girls held hands and floated past the Chik-Fil-A. I was doing my best to stand upright, thinking, I like what I’m doing because it remains a mystery.
This is how I feel about everything—like evolution, or why a cake rises. I like these things because I don’t know how they work. What I don’t know is what makes them good. Explain them to me and I don’t find them interesting anymore.
It’s a small film of water, he says, that allows you to move.
He was the boyfriend of a friend. The friend was moving somewhere ahead of us—fluidly, really. The boyfriend was a scientist—he cloned DNA in a laboratory late at night. My friend and I joked about the white coat we imagined he wore, the goggles, but I never asked him about it. Again: I like to just imagine.


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