Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Meanwhile, at the rose covered cottage (Gloria, part 4)

Our paths were not intended to be fixed and unwavering.  For that we would run along tracks, never knowing speed's reckless wind in our hair, never allowing the moment of uncertain gnaw when we reach a destination we had not intended, never becoming lost.  Gloria and ambiguity had not been formally introduced.  Her people adhered to notions of sharp words and determination creating a version of wisdom, right choices, surefootedness.  Now as she stood in the shop's pre-dawn kitchen, rolling pin in hand, she saw herself as a photo, sealed to time and place and was unhappy with how little mobility that allowed.  And why was the smell of fish so strong this morning?  She had lived with it all her life, its pungence nearly unnoticed, like the watered-down dregs of smooth jazz playing in an elevator.  Suddenly it had become a twangy and unfamiliar accompaniment to lyrics she couldn't recall hearing.

We become habituated to our circumstances, lurching mindlessly or drifting passively through disappointments and dismay, turning ourselves custardy to fit events as they occur, trying not to see ourselves as stubborn, as timid, as resigned.  The trick, Gloria thought as she experienced near-whiplash at the revelation, was to keep the level of believing in magic constant.  In what we think may be magic but might just possibly be ordinary life wearing its own eccentric clothes, the highs and lows aren't so punishing nor so far apart.  We are able to rely on the unseen, on our memory of it at work with sleeves rolled up, golden hair limp with sweat, its buoyant outlook weightless enough to keep our doubts from sinking us.

  

10 comments:

Erin in Morro Bay said...

How very often did I turn myself "custardly" in years gone by. Now my life fits beautifully.
Erin

Marylinn Kelly said...

Erin - And we who love you are so happy for the wonderful fit. No custard today, thank you. xo

T. Clear said...

"The trick, Gloria thought as she experienced near-whiplash at the revelation, was to keep the level of believing in magic constant."

I shall utter this, like a prayer, every day.

Thank-you, dear Marylinn.

xT.

Marylinn Kelly said...

T. - You are so welcome. Thank you for sending me back to read the paragraph again, the paragraph that probably needs to be tattooed on my inner arm. Once we drop of our end of the string, we are vacuumed up into the ordinary, the troubling ordinary. I was almost suffocated and you pulled me back. xo

T. Clear said...

And may I put it on the sidebar of my blog?

Marylinn Kelly said...

T. - I am honored. Yes, of course and thank you so much. I don't know how it has been there, but today I really needed to keep reminding myself about the unbreakable connection to magic - unbreakable but at times feeling beyond one's reach. You do me a great good by affirming meaning in those words. xo

T. Clear said...

Ah, Marylinn, no surprise that I've spent all day doing the same kind of self-reminding: magic.

I stood outside on my deck last night at dusk and took in the apricot-fuzz sunset, wanting to feel moody, unloved, blah blah blah, and for just a moment I was overcome with a terrible joy, almost unwelcome, it was that much of a surprise.

You gotta let it in sometimes, let down the gates.

And then today, a rare sighting in these maritime lowlands of a grey and blue jay, who stayed all day, sounding its strange caw, flashing those spectacular wings. I felt blessed, lucky, and a bit ashamed of my blahs.

xT.

Marylinn Kelly said...

T. - I am so glad for you joys. Last night, in some anxiety and what felt like a great distance from magic, I listened to a meditation by Thich Nhat Hahn, a simple tale about mindful walking. The mind becomes so a'stir that it shuts all the doors, or gates. It is without peer at bringing witnesses for the prosecution. Oh, that beautiful, terrible joy which catches us so by surprise, the telegram in the nick of time from a reliable source saying all is well, all will be well. In spite of everything. There is so much to learn and remember. Shell-shocked amnesiacs. xo

Lisa H said...

I'm just going to study the Tao of Gloria for the rest of my life....

Marylinn Kelly said...

Lisa - She has certainly come to be my teacher. What wonders surround us. xo