Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Padma


sugar is smoking
by Jason Schneiderman

it's amazing how death
is always around the corner,
or not even so far away
as that, hiding in the little pleasures
that some of us would go
so far as to say
are the only things
keeping us alive 


___________________

Now there's a thought.
So, what keeps me alive?
...
< blinking cursor >
...

Ok.
Well, what could be taken from me that might make life unlivable?

< .. blink .. blink .. blink .. >

The obvious answer is involuntary heart beats and respiration.

breathe in. 
           breathe out
breathe in. 
           breathe out

No, no. That's not what I mean.
< .. blink .. blink .. blink .. >

What do I live for? 
< .. blink .. blink .. blink .. >


Sigh.
Honestly now. What keeps me going?

< .. blink .. Do you even want to keep going? .. blink .. >

Hold up. Of course I want to keep living. That's not what this is about.

The things I love are innumerable. I inhale deeply when sipping herbal tea at just the right temperature. I toss and turn without nightly terrier snuggles and I miss his acquiescence to my intermittent but smothering kisses. My heart stills when Jack tells me... well, anything, or when his lips brush my neck without any words at all.

I could begin recount them - my loves - but I fear that will not answer the question.

I have been through hell and back, you see. The house I built will fall. The people I love withdraw. The place I finally felt at home is in the rear-view mirror. And then what? Then should I say that I have nothing? No reason to live? What is the answer when you are a flower of a thousand petals left standing alone?

It is not the heavenly solitude of a morning walk under a canopy of live oaks. It is not the velvety rump of a brand new foal nor the way morning fog settles close to the ground so that grazing horses become apparitions in the sunrise. Not the indulgent fragrance of cinnamon wafting from the Mexican bakery. Not the low and slow lament of a wistful violin. It is not the creamy weight of extravagant stationary. Not the covert surprises in my luggage. Not Texas.

The answer, instead, is in the corolla of a lotus flower. For every petal that falls, there is another unfolding from within. To have a thousand petals is the richest guarantee that I will not be reduced to a sticky, quavering stamen after the blossom has been pulled, plucked or perished, one petal at a time.


he loves me
          he loves me not...
he loves me
          he loves me not...


It is not the herbal tea. It is not Jack, nor is it the terrier (though he is my favorite thing on the planet). But it is the delicate, linked array of all these loves that is keeping me alive. That keeps me going. That keeps life from becoming altogether unlivable.

As long as I love a thousand things, I am free of the weight of the world.
As long as I love a thousand things, I should be happy to die hiding in life's little pleasures.



10 comments:

  1. Its a mystery why do we always remain engrossed in thoughts of death, the end! When we have a beautiful life ahead to think about. Most beautiful things surround us, yet we keep hovering in those sad little places!

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  2. That's good stuff, Lulu. Thanks for writing.

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  3. Awe LuLu, this is beautiful... those random thoughts we have, you have written them so eloquently... I have been there, looking at the blinking cursor, trying to answer the same questions... It is those times that I pull from gratitude... :)

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    Replies
    1. Gratitude is definitely one way. A friend told me once to just live in grace. I think I try, but I'm not sure I know what that even means.

      xx

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  4. everything you wrote here resonated with me, but the last photo makes me so happy :)

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    Replies
    1. I thought of you when I posted it. :)

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  5. This was happy. Hopeful. It suits you, I think.

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    Replies
    1. There is a happy, hopeful person in here somewhere. I promise.

      xx

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  6. As long as I am able to drown in beauty, I shall continue to live.

    Love you so much <3

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  7. Beauty is almost always the thing that hurt just a little.

    /Avy

    http://mymotherfuckedmickjagger.blogspot.com

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