Saturday, September 26, 2009


If this day could be condensed into a few brief, bright flashes; if I could gather a handful of September sun-warmed vignettes and put them in a memory box marked "today," here's what I'd tuck inside:

--a flock of white homing pigeons that burst sunward over our neighbor's trees as though sharing one single thought, only to dip left, drop abruptly below sight, and rush skyward again ... winged joy.

--"One day only" 50 cent McDonald's cheeseburgers ... and a slender girl so hungry from swimming that she ordered--and ate--five.

--an unexpected visit from my no-longer-here boy, and the feel of his arms around me when he hugged me hello (and again, too quickly, at good-bye), his whiskery chin against my forehead, and his cheek, where I kissed it, soft like a memory.

--a transformation in my pantry, where chaos yielded to order and left in its wake neat rows of corn and black beans, and a special spot for brown basmati, and an eye-level stack of walnuts, pecans, pignolia and almonds ... bounty I will use in the coming months.

--a satisfied sigh from my husband at his first bite of dinner--plain though it was, and simple. I'm grateful for a man who is content with warm bread and corn chowder on a fall afternoon.

--an amber stream of home-harvested honey dribbling into a steaming cup of green tea.

--the hum of a dehydrator on the counter. Five plump onions, sliced and separated and scattered inside, will be crumbled into a waiting canning jar when they've cooled. And not long from now, when fall becomes winter and sunshine turns to drizzle, those crumbles will bring a bit of our garden to a waiting dish.

--the breathless tremble I felt one minute and thirty-five seconds into Vivaldi's Four Seasons: Winter (1st movement), and again at 3:04 ... just like every other time I listen to this bit of splendor.

--the whiteness of my journal page before a torn bit of art found its place, pasted along one edge, and my pen met that expanse and gave release to a bubbling prayer of gratitude.

But I find, yet again, that words aren't quite enough.