As We Are

September has arrived. I  am still here, working on recovering the use of my hand. I probably should move on to other themes here. I know other people cope with things in life much more difficult than a broken wrist, still, I didn’t know it was going to affect so many things in my life, from the way I lift an object to the variety of things I can’t do. I guess I have much more to learn about going slowly, and the broken wrist assures I will continue to learn that lesson. This morning while slicing potatoes for breakfast, I also sliced my finger, so now there is more to continue this learning curve I’m currently on.

At the gym this afternoon, I read Dobby Gibson’s poem, “Upon Discovering My Entire Solution to the Attainment of Immortality Erased from the Blackboard Except the Word Save” where he talks about how beauty can be lost, but even loss can be beautiful. I’ve been thinking about that in this city where I live with so many poor people on the street. I want to move into a space in my head where I see more than just the pain and, for me, horror, of how they live, and move further into a place where I can look into each person’s eyes that comes to my window begging, or that follows me on the street with maimed limbs and see the beauty in their personhood. The poem talks about winter as a “meditation on shape” and the “slowing of matter.” If we don’t slow down, we can’t see the shape of our lives, our actions, or the effect of our actions. Maybe this is why we age, so we can slow down to think about the shape of what we have done and the way we live.

Today on my way to and from the gym, I noticed the sidewalk covered with bright yellow blossoms from the tree leaning over the wall. The tree has lost its blossoms, but then there is the seed, I thought. After the blossoms are seeds, and the seeds, though not as glamorous, are necessary for more blossoms to appear. Loss is important.  Then we see the wonder, and can take delight in our action. As Gibson says, we “walk out onto the roofs/of frozen lakes/simply because we’re stunned/we really can.”

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