Thursday, June 03, 2010

sports is a salve for the mind, in the same way music is a salve for the heart, and though i clearly need them both, a lot lately, i've been jumping on the world cup a bit at work simply because it makes all the international students excited; they all know more than me; it's cultural and geographical at the same time, and, like the ncaa's in march, one never really quite knows what will happen. a single goal will throw the whole thing one way or another, and people try their hardest to predict such things as draws, which actually might happen, at a greater rate even, than they do in other sports.

had a son in the hospital in kansas, but now he's home; unfortunately, he's way out in the woods where the minute he turns his cell phone on it dies from lack of batteries, and its signal can't find its way, using its kansas number, to really connect well with anything. so he doesn't call much, though i sit here waiting for him to figure it out, and i've gone out there a couple of times, way out in the woods, just to make sure he's still there and ok. it's a kind of tenuous line, this health that we all take for granted; life, vision, future, hope, all that stuff that helps me wake up in the morning. on the way back last night, i almost hit a baby deer, and i wondered why instinct would make him, even as i was slowing to a screehing halt, jump into my path, as deer always do, at the last moment. i missed him (or her) anyway; the road, the night, the yellow line, the high grasses on the edge, remained in silence as the deer bounded away. in kansas, i loved the feeling of the town, lawrence, which reminded me so much of iowa city, but i kept getting cell phone calls as i'd drive around, and i'd pull over in front of some random house and just answer them while this calm beautiful town went about its business. tnen, when i had some time, i found that i had a van half full of possessions, which included a single banjo, which i then could play, provided i wasn't really in anyone's way, and this was great comfort. the banjo is limited to a single pleasant air, though you can play many tunes, modal ones too; it will still sound harmonic, comforting, and will tell you that you don't need to sing, a message i badly need to hear.

back home, i was clearing out some brush, and noticed that we actually have, not one, but two mulberry trees, one quite tall, both surrounded by bramble and poison-vines, almost impossible to reach, but still blossoming and making mulberries as we speak. this was a wonderful discovery, as i was actually considering planting one in that very area, but now notice that i actually have two and merely need to take care of the area, before actually getting berries off of them. no turtles, that i know of, but then, most of the berries are quite high, and there's no consistent lake or stream anywhere near; the turtles like a good body of water, and only come out after them if they can smell them from the water, i assume. who knows how they work? in any case, these berries are simply waiting for me to get my act together and get them. no poison, that i know of, sprayed on them at all. i get anywhere near the place though, and i come home itchy; i have to do something about the poison vines. they're evil.

back to the son; i went out again in the morning; he was better, and more animals skittered across the road as i drove through the woods, feeling like i was breaking spider webs strung across it. no phone; no connection; yet he assured me, his car was right there, and it worked, and if he didn't like it, he would just come home. enough, i decided, and let it rest, a little, in my mind. at the grocery store, the cart that i grabbed had a little hallmark sack in it, and sure enough, it was full of thank you cards, which i could have kept, or even used, in about a day, given all the people i owe favors to. but i gave it back to the lady who was keeping order in the foyer, and she even knew whose they were, and promised to get them to her. i sat speechless for a minute, as if they were in fact intended for me; i suppose, in a way, they were. one never knows if these chances of fate are just that, or if, maybe, everything is somehow connected. i think sometimes of what i've said about g-d - whose name i'm now inclined to spare the indignity of spelling out on a black and white page - g-d has given me everything i've ever asked for, more than i could possibly dream of, an infinite world and life at its best, right up next to me; in return, i don't ask questions. at times like these, i sometimes have questions. but i repeat the first half of the deal, and, if i really think about it, i never get to the second half, it's sort of obvious. i might as well ask, why did my brakes happen to work at that moment, or, what happens to cell signals when they are way out there, with nothing to connect them to us, or, do you remember how much we love you, which is infidion, as we say, as one of us said a ways back, and it's reverberated through the ages. the night inches on, quiet, warm, humid, the animals alive to the certainty that most of us are going to bed, soon. hopefully, we'll get some sleep, too; it helps. my fiddle bow is rehaired now, and i had to go on a nightmare, summer-day hours-long construction-zone journey to hell & marion to get it, and i swear, when i start playing music this time, i'm 'a play one for the ages, one for the turtles, one for the deer; one for whoever's out there, trying to get some music out of a dead-battery ipod...there are stumps out there, and sticks, turtle shells; pebbles on the beach. where there's hope, there's a chance of a song, and i want to hear it. the modal harmony in particular; the echo through the woods; the birds, in the trees, as the dawn brings its first light; they have, at least, i hope, heard my prayer.

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