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Showing posts from May, 2013

Serendipity and The Secret Garden

Friends, tomorrow is June. June! Which means the students I didn't teach these past months are celebrating their freedom, the crab apple blossoms I blinked and missed this year are ripening into fruit, the thunderstorms I love—the big and juicy ones—are crackling on the horizon, and I must sneak in one more post before spring turns to summer, if only to share a few green-season quotes with you from Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden. Quite by chance, it was the first book I read after Elliot was born, and I can't imagine I'll ever forget that serendipitous match. I read this story of Mary and Colin and Dickon when I was a young girl, of course, but I had forgotten how much truth swirls off every page. There were grand intentions of writing an essay about it, or at least a poem, and sharing that with you all, but instead I have become a master at the art of clipping small fingernails and mining out ticklish spots between the delicious rolls of my son's squi…

Fields of Gold

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I'm not sure what I thought would happen exactly after I did this thing called giving birth. I knew I would be called mother. I knew I would have a son or a daughter. I knew my husband and I would be parents. But as concrete as these words are, from the other side of now-knowing, I can say they feel like shells, shells full of light, but empty of the true weight that fills them when a baby that was hidden is brought into the visible world and placed in one's arms. I look at my son, and daily I think, pregnancy was work, birth was labor, but it was easy, so easy, far too easy for the fact of him, that he is real and really here.

What had I heard would happen exactly? Loss of sleep, a lot of diapers, warmth, deciphering cries, learning to soothe, learning to dress and bathe and feed someone small, and love--letting a new kind of love in. And each of these things has occurred, over and over. Yet they are not what has happened, not really.

What has happened is I wake in the deep o…