Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Today I Am Going to Start Living Like a Six Year Old

Edward Hirsch wrote a poem, "I Am Going to Start Living Like a Mystic," which you can find any number of places, but I like the presentation here.  In my head, I often confuse the title and the first line, and I often say, "Today I am going to start living like ____________."

I've written a poem with the first line "Today I am going to start living like a hospice chaplain."  But this morning, having dropped my sister and nephew off at the airport and completed a morning boot camp workout class on the roof of a parking garage, I have a different spin on the line.

Today I am going to start living like a 6 year old.

What would my life look like?

--I'd write/draw more and worry less about publication.

--I'd see the world in terms of hiding places.

--Five dollars would seem like a fortune.

--I'd do experiments with pop rocks and black cherry soda.

--I'd write up those experiments.

--I'd sing, loudly and often.

--I'd dance without worrying about what anyone thought of me.

--I'd eat at least a half a pound of bacon every morning.

--I'd play games with rules that only I could understand.

--I'd worry less about mess and housekeeping and chores and the to-do list, and I'd simply be with people.

Obviously some of these are more sensible than others.  While I love bacon, it would not be wise to eat so much of it.  My arteries just hardened a bit even at the thought.

What I really want to get at, with this post and the poem I might write, is the joy and wonder of the world that we often train ourselves not to notice.  I've been resisting that tendency to drudgery my whole life, and I hope I continue to do so.  But I'd also like to play more.  What would it feel like to write a piece that went nowhere?  Could I truly not care?  What would it feel like to waste a whole day, a whole week-end, to do nothing that had a larger purpose?

Today I'm thinking it would feel very restorative.

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