I am still waiting to hear from the New School's admission department, and the lack of communication, the emptiness of not knowing, has manifested in variations. Sometimes, it is sand in clockwork; the seconds drag one after the next, a weary procession of defeated soldiers. Last night, it was a needle poised a breath before sleep. My limbs ached and rain washed the stones. But just as the last thought sighed its end, lightning slapped the skies. And then I waited restlessly in the dark.
This morning, I woke late, edited a friend's essay, and tutored. After the student left, I dawdled at the office because the mailbox sat, Sphinx-like, at journey's end. Eventually, I gathered the remnants of my nerve and drove home.
The constant chatter of email has done little to lessen the muteness of the unopened mailbox. When I check Gmail, the sender and subject are first and foremost; there is usually no unwrapping, no mystery to unearth, just the efficient transmission of information. The New School does not send its decisions over email or phone. The simplest packet of information, the yes/no on which all computing is based, is in their opinion fit only for the formality of the physical letter.
There is poetry in this decision; after all, writers aspire for their words to live in ink. Pixels lack romance. But I desire neither poetry nor romance. Over these last weeks, I have ached for brutality, for directness, for bleeding in black and white. 1/0. Win/lose. Yes/no.
It is night now; there will be no mail until morning. And so I will wait as the seconds grind one into the next until I face the mailbox once more.