1962, What I wanted

by Judith A. Lawrence

was a Levittowner rancher like my best friend had, with little box shaped rainbow colored rooms, shiny new appliances, a pink polka dot room for a sleeping baby, sliding glass doors leading to a sunflower garden, and a front window view of a grassy lawn and the family station wagon, instead of the third-story-rear furnished apartment I resided in with the noisy frig, frumpy couch, tattered linoleum floor, torn shades, new baby in a padded bureau drawer, and trolley car screeching to the corner.

I used to drive past the Levittowners at night in my old clunker peering through the twinkling light windows like a misguided stalker in lust of house.  Surely, nothing but love and perfection could exist in such magical dwellings.

1979, I lived in one of those shoe-box houses, with buttercups trimming the four square walls, yellow curtains fluttering in the window, tomatoes and sweet peppers flavoring the garden, Kentucky bluegrass lawn, shiny new car, a nest of kids, a nightmare of a marriage, and all I wanted was out.