Saturday, September 7, 2013

A certain mad rectitude

Here's Sophie, playing on the iPad with Saint Mirtha. It's Saturday and it's hot here in the southland. Oliver and I got up early this morning and drove into the valley where it's even hotter so that Oliver could try out for fall baseball. We decided to try a different league this year as the one we've been a part of for so long is sort of, kind of, getting on our nerves. There are too many politics, too many people who take themselves far too seriously, and while I expect that's true of most baseball leagues, at least we won't know anyone in this one and I can be oblivious because that's what I'm seeking these days if you haven't noticed. I picked Henry and his friends up from their first high school dance last night, and the car was electric with laughter and youth and, frankly, normalcy. I'm grateful that Sophie has an iPad this morning and that she can use it, however inconsistently. I'm grateful that I have Saint Mirtha here on Saturdays so that I can take my boy to try out for the sport that he loves. And I'm grateful that Henry is happy in his new high school, going to dances, raucous with his friends, a life ahead of him.

Here's a poem:

Say It Straight

What we would
and what we can say
stray as in a dream;
a certain mad rectitude
creeps in, by which something simple as an apple
can never be determined
wholly edible.
The crisp act is deferred,
the object blurred by scruples.
The more we cherish clarity
in principle, the more it is
impossible. Will enamel
ever strike the fruit?
Will Eve grow wild and forgivable?
For it's unlovable
to talk too long with snakes,
whose reasons fork
the more the more
she hesitates.

Kay Ryan, from Flamingo Watching, 1994

Reader, I know you think I'm not the gratitude kind of blogger, but let's relent and you tell me what you're grateful for today.


  1. For one thing, I am grateful you have Saint Mirtha in your life.
    On a more personal level, I am grateful for dirt to pull weeds from and for peace in my day and in my life. I am grateful for strong legs and arms. I am beyond grateful for my family.
    There. That.

  2. I'm grateful for an off day. I'm grateful for a husband who pushes me to let go, and a new night nurse who is fitting right in with my boy. And Ikea...Saturday trips to Ikea make me happy. Enjoy your day, and good luck on the new baseball team!

  3. I'm grateful for the mango on the table beside me,
    plucked from a heaping display at the market.
    Grateful for the anticipation
    of slicing into its velvet flesh.

  4. I am grateful for time to myself but connections to others - those from my real life and those from the blog world. I am grateful that I am able to usually focus on the positive and see the good. Above all else it is that spirit and optimism that I am most grateful for in my life.

  5. I'm thankful that I planted bulbs today, in the hopes of seeing them bloom in the spring. I am thankful for the promise of tomorrow and of forgiveness.

  6. you. sunshine. roses. quiet. nurses. hosta. time. almonds. birds. neighbors. security. husband. writing. dark chocolate. wine. date night. calvin. meditation. motorcycles. water.

  7. I'm grateful for a big huge problem I have right now which I can't write about but which necessitates mind blowing amounts of effort but has a big huge silver lining. In other words that poem is for me too! The things we can't say. It's why I'm mostly silent on my blog right now because if I can't write what's happening truthfully I can't write. But everyone I love is okay and that's good. Any other problem is just a mountain to climb; this one is steep!

  8. i'm grateful for this wonderful cool overcast day today...haven't had to turn the ac on!

  9. I'm grateful for Saint Mirtha : )
    And for myself, I'm grateful that I finally, after over three months of mental pain (this time around), have tweaked my medication in a way that actually helps me to feel better and be able to cope with all the things in my life that I'm not grateful for.

  10. For the gopher tortoise in my yard today, and that he didn't fall into the swimming pool.

  11. I'm grateful for being a teacher so I could be with a kid who really really needed me today.

  12. I was wearing a wool scarf for my eveing walk last night. Just in case you wanna cool off. Can Saint Mirtha take over for a whole day with the help of a carpool conspirator?

  13. I had to go to WinnCo today, on a Saturday afternoon, for reasons I will spare you. I am grateful I don't have to go to WinnCo on Saturday afternoons, as a rule.

  14. high school dance? that's a high school my boys would love to attend! :)

  15. I am grateful in a general way for today and every day, or at least I try to be, and I don't name specificities for fear of attracting the evil eye.

  16. I'm grateful for lazy Sundays, kiddie pools, video games, light beer, chickens roasting in the oven and The chance to do it again next weekend.

  17. How is she on the ipad? I'd love to get one for my daughter but there is no doubt she'd break it in a week or less.

  18. grateful my kids are well loved enough and comfortable enough to be the best and worst version of themselves with me.
    that the things that could be better are not, in fact, worse.
    that someone invented air conditioning.
    that i have access to clean, cold water at any time. (this one really hit me this morning for some reason.)
    the interwebs. for its ability to let me have friends i probably wouldn't know otherwise.
    and you. of course you.



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