Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Plain And Fancy
After my past few weeks of incredible busy-ness, I am loving having "normal" days which for me means doing things like hanging the laundry on the line and taking care of Owen. Sometimes the two coincide.
I like to think that if there were a diaper-hanging-on-the-line contest, I would win.
Mr. Moon brought me a water bottle full of flowers home from the woods this morning. Do you know how much that means to me? Anyone can stop in at a store or a shop and buy flowers. He saw these and he stopped and he picked them for me.
They are plain, they are fancy, they are beautiful.
It is so often the very most smallest things which add up to the huge glories, don't you think?
The diapers hanging on the line, the wildflowers picked just for you, only you.
The grouper cooked with some panko and crushed pecans and almonds
after an hour or so weeding in the garden with your lover, your husband, the grandfather of your grandchild.
We gave Owen a bath yesterday, both of us kneeling beside the tub, playing duckies with him and coaxing kisses from the boy. "Look," said Mr. Moon. "I will kiss Grandmother," and he did, and then Owen kissed us both. I never want to forget that. Ever.
Ah, the fanciness of a boy in the bathtub, the simple and yet unexplainable miracle of his body, his mind, open to every new thing, delighting in all of it, bringing us along with him in his delight. The way he so bravely lets me rinse his hair, his trust, his beauty.
The hurricane lilies are sprouting all over the yard. They send up tall, sturdy stalks and then they blossom into alien life-forms which the butterflies hover over. I wonder where they came from, these lilies. I did not plant them and yet, every year, they come back, a wonder and surprise to me, even as I expect them.
They rise up out of plain, hard dirt, even in the heat, even in this spell of dryness we are having and they open and I have to stop and wonder at them, over and over again.
Fancy from plain. Glory from dirt.
My rooster is losing his beautiful tail feathers- his fanciness, and yet, they will grow back. He looks a little silly now with only two of those beautiful curved iridescent feathers where normally there are many.
What is more prosaic than a rooster? What is more fancy? What is more complex?
His feathers will grow back in but I think he is beautiful now, too, even as I carefully collect the feathers I find on the ground which have had their life-span connected to his rooster-butt and put them in a bottle over my kitchen sink.
I am having that sort of day, the sort where I can take the time to stop and appreciate all of this plain and fancy beauty which is my life. My chickens, the diapers on the line, the flowers I did not toil to produce, the love of my husband which I will never quite feel I deserve and so, always feeling that it is a gift I never even dreamed to ask for.
And now I'm going to town to stay with Owen at his house for a few hours and I can't think of anything in this world I would rather do. He will hold out his arms for me and I will settle him on this old hip of mine which has been carved into the perfect seat for a baby by the bottoms of so many babies before him. He loves to sit on that hip of mine and I love to shove it out to provide that perch, my strong right arm around him.
This. This plain and fancy day may be one of the best days of my life. Who knows? If it IS all of the little things which make up the glory, it may well be.
Funny how when we're young, we think the grandest things would be fairy-tale things like being the most beautiful girl in the world or being famous or being rich, rich, rich.
And then we grow up and we find out that no, the grandest things are not those things at all. They are the real things, some of them tiny, which make up the reality of a lifetime lived as best we can live it.
And that's what I have to say today. My grandson is waiting.