Hammock Series, part ii

Luftmensch (Yiddish)

there are several yiddish words to describe social misfits.

this one is for an impractical dreamer with no business sense.

a Luftmensch is literally an air person.

Which is also a pretty good way to describe someone lying in a hammock.

 Schadenfreude (German)

so what, sometimes you sleep in a hammock out on your patio? it’s good for your back.

so what, one of your neighbors has a real peeping-tom thing going on? it’s almost charming sometimes.

sometimes, it almost makes you feel less alone.

Kummerspeck (German)

excess weight gained from emotional overeating in a hammock.

literally ‘grief bacon’.

Epicaricacy (Greek variation of schadenfreude), noun.

so what, you wear a komono to sleep now?

I bet you didn’t see that coming.

glas wen (welsh), noun.

a smile that is insincere or mocking.

sometimes caused by lying in a hammock too long, practicing

your face in a darkened courtyard

for someone who isn’t there.

literally, a blue smile. 

Metanoia (Greek in origin), noun.

so what, your neighbor is a fat woman with a peeping tom problem?

so what, she’s a fat lady who likes cheap thrills?

so what, whenever you wake up from a hammock,

you throw five darts at the fence that faces her window, one after the other, until

your komono flies behind you like a cape, leaving your body totally exposed.

(an Esperanza never wears his clothes to bed beneath his kimono.)

so what, when you’re up for it, you hold this stance as long as you can

to show off your perfect stroke and follow-through.

then you look up at the fat lady’s balcony, waiting for her

to weep, or waiting for her to turn away or red, or sing?

so then, you stare blankly toward the sky,

hoping she cracks or breaks into blossom

before you do.

so what, you don’t smile at her through the window

(because you’re not that easy).

so what, you always laugh first, because

she never does.

Ikstuarpok (eskimo), adjective / idiom.

that feeling of anticipation when you’re waiting for someone to meet you at a hammock in the middle of the night and so you keep on going outside, looking around to check to see if they’ve arrived yet, because you haven’t spoken to them in so long you feel anxious all over again and don’t want to be awkward and scare them away; so you keep on going outside to see if they’ve arrived because you can’t remember what it’s like anymore to talk to this person, or whether you even want to; because you don’t know what else to do.

Vybafnout (Czech), noun. 

literally to jump out from behind the bushes

or from behind a hammock, and say:


Zhaghzhaghzhagh (Persian), noun.

the chattering of teeth from the cold or from rage.

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