Sunday, July 27, 2008
Upon Finishing A Shrug
The weaving in of ends is tedious, and by the second sleeve, I'm exhausted. The whole shoulder might unravel. The sleeves hug my biceps too closely, and distort the lines of the fabric. One side of the cabling is larger than the other, because I lost count of the pattern, and went my own way. It's a crooked shrug.

See there? It's all a-tilt and hangs almost straight.

I try it on in the afternoon, when the sun is highest, and the breeze through the windows does not penetrate the knit. I know it will be warm about my arms and back come fall, but the shrug seems oppressive, now. I'm lumpy in the mirror, this lopsided face of mine staring back and taking in the tomato color of yarn. I'm colorless in this bright poppy. Sanguinity has never been a feature of which I can boast.

I pull on the edges a bit, trying to straighten them out. Knitting holds memory well, though, and the stitches refuse to budge, though I've dampened the hem and yanked and pulled. Ah, me. The past cannot be erased. What's done is done, what's made cannot go unmade unless I destroy the garment in its entirety.

Even then, the yarn remembers the bumps and purls. It would take many washings for the cotton to relax. By then, the cotton would be little more than a shredded bit of fiber, lying like a pool of blood at my feet. So, unraveling is right out.

Instead, I take the shrug off and fold it. It will live in my closet until the time is right to bring it out and wear it (one time) in the fall, at an anonymous place where no one knows I knit, and I can say: "A friend made it for me; it's an amateur attempt--see how badly the sleeves are set in?"

But then, it occurs to me. Because of my scoliosis, my shoulders are uneven. I don the sweater again. Wait...yes, it's true. On my crooked frame, the sweater sits evenly. The bottom edges are aligned, as are the sleeves. Upon closer inspection, I see I have no problem with the shrug itself. It's the wearer of the garment of whom I am critical.

So I shrug. So be it. I'm a crooked person, off kilter and tempo. My shrug is just right for me; I was knitting it correctly the whole time. I was making it for myself. And as I balance upon my slanted hips and quirky knees, I think for just a moment, if the world was righted on its axis, I would be standing straight, and everything else would just fall over in a heap.

I do believe I'll wear this sad little thing, and be proud of it. My bent hands crafted it, and though it be awry, it be a-right for me.
Written by FRITZ
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Name: Fritz

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