Tuesday, May 17, 2011

BOOK TWO (14) socks, sundrunk berries, Betty White

If you have three thousand freshly-washed socks to pair together over the course of a lifetime, or even 10 times that, remember: you can have neither more than the one life you live at the moment (calloused heels and all), nor slide into a different (barefoot on the beach?) life than you currently inhabit, and which is constantly sifting away.

If you plant (and tend) a rambling garden full of perennials and fruit trees or if you gulp your mojito in a single throw--it amounts to the same thing--a passing moment, which is every housewife's equal possession. We can no more hold onto the past than berries can hang onto their branches once they've drunk their fill of sunlight.

Our loss therefore, is actually a series of fleeting instants: nuzzling baby chub, coupling socks, listening to piano practice... No housewife can lose what's already past-nor what's yet to come. Neither are in our possession.

So, two things should be kept in mind (besides your son's dental appointment today at 3pm). First, that the big cycle of creation, operating since way before...

...has always been the same, and always will be. You can watch it for a hundred years or indefinitely; it will recur in the same pattern...(though if you go this route, you may need to 'order in' dinner).

Secondly: That when both the most ancient among housewives and the most youthful permanently hang up their rubber gloves, their loss is precisely equal. For the only thing any housewife can be deprived of is the present. This is all she owns.

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