The afternoon sun that falls into my bedroom so early in the late afternoon is delicious. I lie on the bed, done with the day of teaching and driving and laundry and cooking and feeding and changing diapers and thinking, and watch the motes of dust suspended in the beams of light. I've been listening to a lot of Pema Chodron these days, mainly on the highway after my early morning drop-off at Henry's school. Do you mark off your days, at least the significant ones, by the books you've read, the music you've listened to, the movies you've seen, the way the sun comes in just so at 3:50 on a November afternoon? In my own distant past, there is La Wally, sung by a diva in Diva . Further back there's holding the hand of a boyfriend in the school chapel while the lights dim and The Grapes of Wrath comes up on the screen. There are Charlie Smith's novels and John Dos Passos, certain passages marked in tiny script. There's Van Morrison's Purple Heather in an apartment in Druid Hills, and Chet Baker whisper-singing in a dingy apartment, an unmade bed, my back cold on the shower tile, depleted by love, the hum of the electric fan over the stove as he smoked. Sometimes I'm overcome. There's Pema Chodron, now, and Patty Griffin's full throat.
Cast my memory back there, Lord. Sometimes I'm overcome.