more than just a lamp


She’s parked in my spot.

I hit the brakes and hear the bag with 2-litre pop roll off the backseat. I hope they didn’t land on the kaiser buns.

She is making off with the lamp.

I pop out of my minivan.

I search my mind for her name and remember just as I make eye contact. “Want help with that Sarah?” I recognize her glasses from her Facebook profile photo. Fruit of the Loops buy and sell Facebook site.

I wonder if she woke my husband from his post-night shift sleep.

“I should be good,” she says, chrome dome shade taking swings at her chin as she opens the car door.

I crawl into the backseat of her car and help her ease the lamp in, still swinging its fists.

I personify the lamp and wonder if it’s fighting for it’s right to stay. With me.

“Just move that stuff around back there, it’s stuff for the good will”.

I re-arrange a robust black garbage bag and turn the base of the lamp to settle it in safely. I grab a handful of newspapers and pass them to her to pad the shade.

“Do you like it?” I ask, hopeful she might not want it after all.

“I LOVE it,” she shrieks. “I have a house FULL of midcentury”.

“I’m glad,” I whisper back. “I love it too, so I’m happy for your enthusiasm”.

“Then why are you getting rid of it?”

“My husband doesn’t share my love for quirky midcentury stuff.”

“Well I’m… single.” she whispers. Not in a sheepish way, but in the way one might reveal the secret location of a new tapas bar no one yet knows about.

I notice how groovy her glasses are. How her silk scarf folds in just the right spots as it cascades down her wool coat.

“My ex-husband has a palace at the top of the hill and I”m perfectly happy to fill my little home with eccentric treasures.”

I feel envy.

I want to yell to my lamp. You are free! Run!

I wonder if there is a genie in the lamp that I have freed that will return to grant me a wish.

But I am paralyzed by the thought that I wouldn’t know what to wish for as I watch her careening down the street. Away from my palace.


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