January 20, 2013 § 1 Comment
About two and a half years ago I decided to go for a walk. On a beautiful late-summer morning I walked for about three miles, a loop that went from my house through various neighborhoods in my town and along a golf course and playing fields. I was alone and it was early morning, so peaceful and quiet. I loved it so much that I decided to do the same walk the next day, again two days later and eventually up to 6 days a week, rain, shine or freezing cold. Always the same loop, rarely the same hour of the day but most often alone.
It has not been boring even once. I think, look, hear, breathe. I give myself time to do these basic activities, which I would forget to do when caught up in the fast flow of a normal busy life.
Along that same path, I have noticed the change of season, not with my calendar or the school schedule, but with the birds’ and insects’ behavior, the plants and wildlife of the pond by the road, and of course the same flowers, bushes and trees I see day after day.
I have often lost sense of time, deep in my thoughts, either surprised to be back at my house so soon or to have felt out of touch for so long.
I have processed major events and minor annoyances. I have cried without control about my father dying, I have subdued my worries, detangled or loosened complicated knots in the fabric of my family’s dynamics, and breathed through impatience and frustration.
I have paused and smiled at a beautiful sky, shivered with joy under a brief dowpour in July, wondered about a bird’s call, felt drunk with deep breaths of crystalline arctic air and marveled over the beauty of an old elm, leafless against a white sky.
I have dreamed about traveling, starting a new life after my youngest child leaves the house, or what it will be like to be a grandmother one day. I have fantasized about my kids’ exploits, future successes, amazing feats, even my daughters’ wedding dresses — because I could do so in private with boundless imagination and unlimited possibilities.
I have daydreamed.
I have discovered that, for a moment, I can step out of a life where my senses get so overstimulated they become numb, where my soul is fed only by shallow sensations, into one that fulfills my needs for meaning, wonder, truth, creativity and grace.
At first I thought it was a luxury to have time for a walk. Then I discovered it’s a necessity to make time for this walk.
October 30, 2011 § 1 Comment
It started to snow last night
And Halloween is in two days.
Late, in the dark
I went to see
How the trees were
Fall and Winter
All at once.
So quietly they tricked me
All dressed in their ghost costumes
Cold, eerie, mysterious and spooky.
But this morning they treated me
All set in Fancy Dress for
Carnival, Pageants and Masquerades.
July 10, 2011 § Leave a comment
At 4:oo am french time on july 21 1969.
Our parents woke us up without warning.
To see the first humans walking on the moon.
Had I been awakened in the middle of the night for
The slow transmission
The coolest language
In radio voices.
The light of black and white TV
My parents’ faces
And their eyes,
no one saying a word,
made it a magical
Lying in a hay field
In the Alps
I looked at the moon.
The Americans were walking there?
An exhilarating feeling of looking at a human
Destination, far, far,
Straight from my eyes to there.
Not in my imagination.
Ever since that day I was fascinated by the Space Program, watching launches religiously, my heart beating fast, my eyes tearing. So beautiful, going straight up, away from the world, with awesome fire, smoke, roar and speed. Astronauts where my gods, powerful and beautiful riders, and NASA, a word that made me dream.
Many years forward I went to Cape Canaveral and saw Atlantis launch with my husband and 10 years old son. It was again so real, taking my breath away, just beautiful, beautiful.
On Friday July 8th, I watched the “last launch” on my television.
The last candle on my childhood birthday cake.