Friday, November 15, 2013

Friday Fragments: Notes from a Whirlwind Week

--Our friend moves into our cottage today. We have spent the last week getting it ready. We still have a few tasks (mini-blinds are up, but curtains aren't finished), but I'm hopeful that after this week-end, we'll be done, and she can settle into a peaceful existence in our cottage.

--I've used several days of leave this week. I still have PTO days to take, luckily. They vanish at the end of December. It's not the use of vacation time I might have envisioned, but it hasn't been too awful. Lots of trips to Home Depot. Lots of cleaning.

--My favorite memory will be the time at the end of each day, when my spouse and I sat by the pool and reflected. It's been a windy week, but still pleasant. Last night, the moon was mostly full, and the wind made interesting patterns in the clouds, which reflected the moonlight in interesting patterns. Lovely.

--On top of home repair, we've had some whirlwind visits. More on that later.

--I've still been going to work, for an hour here and an hour there. It all begins to feel surreal.

--And I've been logging onto my online classes, an hour here, two hours there.

--I feel a bit fragmented.  Maybe a lot fragmented.  It will be good to start reassembling the pieces.  It will be good to start the never-ending task of attacking the dust.

--In the midst of it all, moments of grace!  This morning I listened to an episode of NPR's On Point, where a group of scholars and writers talked about the just published prayer journal of Flannery O'Connor.  I wrote more about this, with a link to the program, in this post on my theology blog this morning.

--And I've really been enjoying discussing the readings with my ENC1102 class.  How interesting to watch them discovering Alice Walker's "Everyday Use" for the first time.  We had a bit of a side discussion of quilting.

--And I have an idea for not just one short story but two.  Now if I can only find time to write them.

--Here's a poem I wrote many years ago, as a hurricane approached, and we talked about our different feelings about the wind.  I hate windy days and nights; I associate wind with destruction.  My spouse loves the wind.  He'd sleep outside during windy weeks like this one, if we still had our hammock.    

Clean Sweep

While other folks board
up their windows,
she opens hers wide
to the hurricane winds.

She goes to the beach.
Unlike the surfers,
she has no interest in waves
that crash against the shore.

The sand abrades her skin.
The wind sweeps into every crevice.
Behind her, transformers pop and crackle.
Energy explodes.

Even though the palms bow
to the storm, she lifts
her arms above her head,
struggles to remain standing.
That night, she sleeps
soundly. Even though the wind
howls and hoots and hammers at the walls,
she breathes clean air and dreams fresh visions.

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