Monday, July 29, 2013


For all these years the cemetery has been in the background, a source of quiet behind the houses across the street from my house.  It's been an obstacle, something between me and its other side.   I've jumped its fences and clipped pear branches from its perimeter by the school.  I've watched my street become crowded with cars and mourners here and there when the funeral home down the street shows a body.  The barbs on its fences have torn my trench coat, and more than once I shimmied through the narrow opening of its locked gate on Parson's street.  The cemetery closes at dusk, but I've crossed it in the dark many times, sometimes crushing beneath my boots snow that has iced over and become treacherous, sometimes avoiding the deep puddles that accumulate in its low areas, sometimes rapidly and nervously of an anxious spring night.  I've had my tarot read there and thought about my future there, but I have never written about it.  It's close to home, but it's mostly been a small expanse of quiet to cross when I am impatient and headed somewhere else.  Where else would I be heading?  Where is anyone heading?  These are pat and easy questions.  Isn't it nice to be alive and glide so thoughtlessly over the dead?

I am writing about the cemetery by my house because I have decided to end this blog.  I have enjoyed this blog and all that it and you have done for me.  I started this blog on July 30th of two thousand and eight.  Five years ago, I was sitting on my porch, signing up for the account that would become this blog.  I did not have a name for it, nor did I know what it would become.  My then-girlfriend, Wendy, came onto the porch with a coupon for an oil change and said, Do you need a coupon for an oil change?  And I said, That's it!  I will call my blog Oilchanges.  I never once wrote about car mechanics, but many years ago, Sean Casey, the author, did write about Oilchanges and its relationship to food, not auto mechanics, on the Kenyon Review blog.  Thanks, Sean, that was one of the first (and few) times that Oilchanges was mentioned on the literary circuits of the internet, which is something that I had hoped would happen more often than it actually did.  Oh well.

Anyway, I have thought about this for a long time, acutely for a couple months and vaguely for a couple years, and I have decided that the time has really come to end Oilchanges.  There are some misunderstandings I want to clear up—like whether or not I'm a foodie—some closing remarks I want to make—like what Oilchanges is about—and other projects that I want to focus my energies upon—poetry and non-fiction that don't have the benefit of an immediate and diligent audience, such as you have all been for five good years.  I will post through the month of August about these things, after which I will retire Oilchanges.   


Helen Tosch said...

Your presence will be missed. I love you.

Helen Tosch said...

I don't know if my first note went through.

I'll miss this blog. I miss you.

Your sister

Anonymous said...

I'll miss Oilchanges. Bumps