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Saturday, January 06, 2007

Cloud Nine

All humans have their discontents. We'd all still be living in a cave if we didn't often scan the horizon and wonder what was possible.

When you are facing challenges, it is always salutary to consider the pleasant things in your life and surroundings that offset the pebbles in your shoe. Such meanderings are a form of gratitude. I have vices by the bushel, of course, but ingratitude is low down on the list. I am often put in wonder at persons that are placed in extreme situations, many which seem for a time hopeless, and then triumph over adversity. The wonder is perhaps not that they did not succumb, but rather that it occurred to them to attempt to persevere in the first place. With some people I've met or known about, it can be distilled down to a piquant drop: I'm still above the lawn. Let's go!

What makes a man happy? Dunno. But I think that I am. It is easy to recall times when I was profoundly unhappy for a time, but in a way hadn't a care in the world to justify the feeling. There were other times when I've been in a mess, and simply heard the squeaky little voice say deddy from down there near the floor, and everything's all right.

I've been right at the door of death a few times. It's very calm there. I wonder if it's because you claw and bite and scratch to live the most when you know you've squandered or been cheated out of the time you had, and wish to have a chance to catch up on the plus side of the ledger before you go -- but if you've done all you can do you are content with your lot. Dunno that either, but I've always noticed it's the man losing at cards that wants to stay all night.

I notice also that many persons have a kind of self hypnosis that renders them immortal in outlook, because they are not prepared to be ever nearer to death, day by day, as every day they have is squandered, and they know it. And to deal with themselves, they must deny mortality. Botox for the mind.

I have heard that word deddy a thousand times a thousand times, and considered a thousand times in the moonlight the velvet cheek of the woman that loved me truly. While the cave yawned behind me, filled with the indistinct shadows of those that huddled there for shelter and safety, I inspected the horizon, and walked toward it in the sunshine. I think of all the people chained in the cave, murdered in the cave, crippled in the cave, unable to overcome the timidity that seeps from the cave walls, that couldn't walk out even if they wanted to, and I'm grateful.

These are little things, I know, but it's all you ever get in this world.

2 comments:

Internet Ronin said...

...Dunno that either, but I've always noticed it's the man losing at cards that wants to stay all night.

Mm-huh.

...Botox for the mind.

Mm-huh.

These are little things, I know,

Hmmm

but it's all you ever get in this world.

Mm-huh

Anonymous said...

I think of all the people chained in the cave, murdered in the cave, crippled in the cave, unable to overcome the timidity that seeps from the cave walls, that couldn't walk out even if they wanted to, and I'm grateful.

Those of us who get out of the cave and are able to shake the pebbles from our shoes are the exception, I've come to believe. I know too many who can't through no fault of their own and too many who can but choose to stay cowering in the cave. Is it all some sort of random luck?
-Deb in Madison