Posts Tagged ‘Closed’


Catch and release.    What is it that seeps through the cracks when we’re touched … when some phrase or idea feathers its way through the hard shell of “everything is fine.”  This morning I was reading the book Same Kind of Different as Me (gift from Hal, endorsed by the Lovely Young Writer).  I got to the place where Denver is contemplating an offer of friendship but which kind—real or catch and release?  On my second cup of coffee, I rubbed sleep and tears and 17 different kinds of pollen from my eyes.  Catch and release I understand.  But real friendship?   It wells tender-hearted and yearning from what source?

An hour later, driving past the cemetery, I was thinking of the loveliness of the day.  How much easier this spring is for me than last.  The way that first fair weather brought gusts of dismay, accusation, indictment; jolts of sunshine mixed with horror.  Honeysuckle astonishment.  The way the cashier’s arms reached out to hug me over the sacks of white silk flowers at the checkout counter.    The first floral arrangement.  The headstone.  Wiping my face, I realized that little stretch of highway is much, much easier to travel and that two fractures through the embankment in a single morning is a rarity now.

There is something new afoot, though.  I’ve noticed the feeling of “closed” lately.  (It’s an improvement from last year when I was most assuredly closed and also unaware of it).   Maybe there’s a turnabout in the offing… like the four o’clock flower :  cinched up tight for much of the day, opening in the afternoon.    A friend told me in so many words:  “you changed for a while, then after Michael’s death, you went right back again.”  She is right, and I’ve been feeling it.   At the grocery store, among friends.  The weather is fine inside – I’m content — but I’ve no willingness to reach out and say hello.

When Chrissie my sister was in town, I threw a little garden party.  Since then, I’ve talked to a few guests, separately, about their experiences at my house.   Are we hard wired not to like each other?  This one didn’t like that one.  This other one was too loud.  Someone was insensitive.  Two people separately commented that still a third was self-involved.  And yet each guest (notwithstanding the Rising Man, who was too [?] to attend) was lifted onto my patio by the finest thread of love and compassion.  It’s mystifying.

Tonight I put on some super-comfy clothes, dug my toes in the soil, and planted some knock-your-socks-off orange, pink, and red Zinnias and also some Gerber daisies.  For two hours, I incorrectly assembled a cupboard (deck bin?) that promises to be a first step on the road to patio perfection.  I was astounded to discover that one could incorrectly couple every possible plastic component in such a way that the little tab and circle enclosures become bonded together and must be broken apart with a hammer.   Behind me the puppies circled the patio with wild abandon.  When I’d pried all the pieces apart and was ready to start anew, I discovered the pups had literally shredded my instructions. 

Whereupon, I gathered the many plastic components into a pile, snapped off my iPod, and called it a day.   Tonight I’ll continue reading She Got Up Off the Couch and tomorrow I’ll Get Up off My Chair for flowerbed preparation and planting day at my (former?)

mother-in-law’s house.


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