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One day, we were outside in the courtyard at the same time. I was there drinking a Diet Coke in big, frantic gulps. If you do it fast enough you can make your throat feel like a book has opened inside it. This works especially well if the Coke is for some reason bitterly cold, as the drinks from the vending machines at the archives always are. The forestry girl was smoking a cigarette with the same inappropriate intensity. I paced back and forth with my Coke, gasping away, and the forestry girl stared wretchedly into the grass. We hadn’t spoken for a bit, and then she said I hate it in there. She gestured toward the reading room, to all the sweet old people bent over the birth certificates of their long-dead relatives. They all looked so happy and industrious, so filled with purpose.What are all those people even doing? They don’t even have to be here. They just like it.She shook her head in full disgust. I am bendy and eager to please, and so I nodded my head, agreeing. I see now that I was scared of her. I said, This place used to be a prison, you know. She drove her cigarette into the grass. She stomped on it til she dislodged some roots. Of course it was, she said.