I don’t know about you, but I needed a little Mary Oliver this week, and the other night, when this was the sunset, I thought of her poem The Ponds.
It ends with these lines:
Still, what I want in my life
is to be willing
to be dazzled–
to cast aside the weight of facts
and maybe even
to float a little
above this difficult world.
I want to believe I am looking
into the white fire of a great mystery.
Speaking of mysteries, and floating above the difficulties of now,
even though all the kids can’t come over for Sunday breakfast, Chip and I made a pile of pancakes with last summer’s tart wild blueberries and maple syrup. This week we Zoomed with Middlebury College friends we haven’t seen in 40 years (how can that be?) and everyone was kind of the same, having survived the decades pretty well, it appears. We all looked a little different, but not as much as I had expected, or maybe my eyes are becoming more forgiving, and we laughed and laughed and smiled a lot, and remembered making maple syrup, and promised to do it again someday. Without the virus we may never have reconnected.
Will you believe me when I tell you that the pancakes tasted like a poem? And if I were I poet, I would say it better, but I assure that they weren’t only made of flour, eggs and the last soured milk, they were made of picking blueberries last summer with my daughters and their children and dogs on Sunshine Mountain, and hanging around in a Vermont sugar shack when I was 18 or 19, of Alaskan Augusts and New England springs, and family and friends, and time passing and chance and change, and meeting a boy with a nice smile at a freshman dance, and our grandchildren holding baby chicks that grew up to lay warm eggs carried reverently to my back door, with two hands. Even the curdled milk (which ruined my tea first) was a perfect addition, because we didn’t make it this far without some sadness or disappointments (even if it may not show on our faces) but here is my point: Who knew breakfast, given the proper attention, could taste like gratitude and happiness?