Today is my wife’s birthday. She is 53. We met in Virginia when she was 18 and I was 24. One day I asked my roommate’s girlfriend if she knew any beautiful women. “I do,” she said. “My roommate.” And she giggled and walked away.
The next day after classes, I climbed the stairs to my apartment, messed around in the kitchen, and then stepped into the living room. And there on the sofa was a woman: shy, thin, smiling, beautiful. Her name was Serita.
I don’t remember what we first said. But I do remember that I immediately sat down on a chair opposite her, and that we talked and laughed, and that talking and laughing (and looking at her) was kind of otherworldly.
A day or so later I saw her on campus and we talked again, and that evening we went walking on the hill behind the college dorms. We walked up and back, then sat on a bench, and then I walked her to her dorm room.
Serita and I have been married for 35 years.
(If you scroll down, you will come to a post titled “Wherein My Wife Takes a Turn.” It’s a video. Serita shows up in the third feature.)
Sometimes in good weather after I’ve delivered Quetzal to school, I take the long way home. And often on these drives I pass an elderly man out for his morning walk. He’s close to ninety years, I’d say, bent and a bit shaky, but alert and still active.
This morning when I passed the man, he was standing in the grass just down the hill from his house. Continue reading
Always on a rainy, late Saturday night you can find a photo that surprises. You may have to look over 6,000 to find but one, but still…
A photo by Lorenzo Mittiga. Dona Thud. Dona lives on Bonaire, an island off the coast of Venezuela. At last count she was somewhere into her 90’s.
(Consider clicking on the photo to better appreciate it.)
The white shift, the white hair, the advanced age, and yet the palpable sense Continue reading
Yesterday a turkey hen stepped out from the woods while I was planting, and when I turned to better see, I noticed she had ten or twelve chicks. They were small, about the size of a nose, say, brownish-tan, and they dashed about on invisible legs beneath their mother’s belly and likewise between her legs, around and around, in and out, in sync already with gravity, with locomotion, with speed, and most especially, with vulnerability, the long arm of vulnerability, the hen, head high, clucking just so as she navigated through my tangled stash of firewood, the chicks attached to her clucks as with strings…but with such small legs? on day one to be mustered through the tangle on such legs?
I came across a new word yesterday in a deli in Dover. It was written in large on the wall next to where I ordered my sandwich:
MERAKI (may-rah-kee) (v.) to do something with soul, creativity, or love; to put something of yourself into your work.
I looked at and studied the word meraki for the full length of time I was in the deli. My phone informed me that meraki is a contemporary Greek word. I especially like the second part of the definition:
To put something of yourself into your work.