Sunday, January 13, 2008

Terra Incognita

Today is one of those days of...

I am not sure what. You run the vacuum, you mop the floor, you fold the laundry, perhaps you boil seven large eggs, and three of them burst, frothing the pot all over the stove, but you never quite get to making the egg salad for your sandwiches for the week.

Perhaps you try hanging the new calendar you got for Christmas, and in some fashion acknowledge the passage of time. It looks lovely. Ancient maps of the world. You flip through it: months and months, pregnant with interesting possibilities. June 9th, for instance. That's a Monday, in 2008. Who knows what will happen then? Perhaps it is the day your lottery numbers come up. Perhaps it will just be warm and beautiful.

And, look here, closer to home: your trip to Houston on February 1st. You have never been to Houston. Nice. Something new. Barbecue. And yet...

The light doesn't seem quite right. The sun is too orange today. The angle is wrong. It is still setting too early. And then there is work tomorrow. The train. Emerging at 1:30 for luncheon. You will have the poached salmon, for a change. Emerging at 5:30 to exercise. 2 hours, and 1000 calories later, you spend 10 minutes in the steam room. The 8:07 home.

All of the elements of satisfaction are there. All arranged neatly into rows, and columns: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc.. And yet, looking out over the kitchen sink, into the back yard, how gray and neglected the bowl of the birdbath looks this afternoon. Even that cardinal in the dogwood, cocking his head querelously at you, looks gray in this light!


'Tis not too late to seek a newer world.

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