One Day, Otherwise

A few drops of rain graced the very end of our walk yesterday afternoon. Later, our kitchen redolent with baking pies, rain hammered on the roof.

I hope all my readers have many, many things to celebrate. Oddly enough, on this day I’m mostly grateful to be in a place where I can be grateful. My life has not always been that way — or, more accurately perhaps, I’ve been pressed at times where I could think only from here to there, and not have the luxury of gratefulness. I know I’m not alone in that. Gratitude, it seems to me, needs not material or financial space (although those things certainly help), but the spiritual space to be simply in the here, the now.

One of the very loveliest gratitude poems is Jane Kenyon’s Otherwise. Here’s a few lines on this holiday morning.

I slept in a bed
in a room with paintings
on the walls, and
planned another day
just like this day.
But one day, I know,
it will be otherwise.

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And, more happiness in a world with such dear creatures, my beloved hardworking cat.

If There Was Only One Leaf…

This sunny, gorgeous weekend was a high school ritual completely unfamiliar to me — the fall rites of Homecoming. The girls’ varsity soccer team played first, followed by the boys. One boy — young man, really, on the cusp of adulthood — arrived with a couch in the back of his pickup. His teammates promptly carried it out and set up living room cheering quarters at the far end of the field.

Unlike the high school I attended (way back sometime in the 20th century), there’s no cheerleaders. The boys pull their weight in playing and cheering — and the girls do, too.

Near the end of this long afternoon of playing, a tiny girl in a polka-dot coat wandered over to keep my older daughter and I company. She picked up a crumpled leaf from the grass and handed it to me, full of wonder.

Happiness… even comes to the boulder
in the perpetual shade of pine barrens,
to rain falling on the open sea,
to the wineglass, weary of holding wine.

 

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Pregame visit with cat.