Friday, February 19, 2010

Carrying All the Ingredients

A disconcerting morning: we lost Emerson.  His little cries called me out of dark sleep. I flailed around trying to disentangle from ropes of sheets, blankets, groping spots on the comforter where he usually is stretched out.  Wayne was gone, the light in the kitchen was on, I could hear the fire roaring.  It was a nightmare, except it was 6:12 a.m. (a nightmare to me, who rises in comfort somewhere around 7:30).  I got out of bed, hurried to the back door, in dread that he'd been locked out with those killer cats; he wasn't there.  I went from room to room, called him, said, "Where are you?"  No answering whines.  I burst into the bathroom, where Wayne was shaving in relative quiet, "WHERE'S EMERSON!" He looked at me, and assured me that the pup was in the house somewhere.

What must it be like, to be so calm?

Why do I trace my steps backwards?  Back through the living room, the bedroom, the back room; I have been through them all twice already.  Back out to the porch, to make sure that the cats hadn't hurt him, sliced him open, maimed him.  Whirling around, back in the kitchen I notice that the door to the pantry was cracked open, not latched.  Ha!  I slid the door open, and out he came, wagging.

You see, he is invisible at dusk, and at dawn.  He disappears into the shadows.  He follows at our heels, and when we make quick U-turns, pop out, and close the door, he is stuck.  To complicate things, he cries out in a pitiful puppy voice, and then sits patiently, quiet as a mouse, waits for me to find him.  He even leans on the door, and falls inside when you open it.

Too often I awaken in a panic.  Sometimes I crash back into this plane, after a night of traveling to various solar systems.  It seems as though I spend too much of my allotted time too far away, then need to rush to get back into my skin, arrange the freckles in their familiar designs, begin the waking up.

My boys loved the books, "Where's Waldo?"  So does Mary Alice.  The boys and I spent many evenings before bed, staring at the illustrations of hundreds of thousands of beach-goers,  or villagers, looking looking looking for the weird guy in red and white striped socks.  "Where IS that Waldo?"

Oh, you will love this:  I am wondering, what would my friend Hafiz say about panic stricken awakenings?  About losing your puppy inside the house?  About forgetting to put your freckles back on straight?

Here it is...

To Build a Swing

You carry 
All the ingredients
To turn your life into a nightmare--
Don't mix them!

You have all the genius
To build a swing in your backyard
For God.

That sounds
Like a hell of a lot more fun.
Let's start laughing, drawing blueprints,
Gathering our talented friends.

I will help you
With my divine lyre and drum.

Will sing a thousand words
You can take into your hands,
Like golden saws,
Silver hammers,

Polished teakwood,
Strong silk rope.

You carry all the ingredients
To turn your existence into joy,
Mix them, mix

Hafiz is so good to me!


Bethany said...

Oh gosh, at first I thought you meant he had DIED suddenly. I read the post with my hand on my heart. Phew. Love the way you write about waking and freckles. Your dogs are so beautiful. And you too.

Sorrow said...

is the carrier of my heart most days...

N2 said...

I think we are going to have to quit calling Emerson a puppy earlier than other dogs: Look How Big He Is! And sleek and beautifully black, of course he disappears into the shadows of the pantry. Sooo glad he was just playing hide and seek =o)))) Love to You All! N2

Mermaids Muse said...

I too was worried when I saw the title ..but I laughed I can relate I have a beautiful black lab who when he was a pup would disappear ..He has another trick now he will be behind me I will call him and call him the woods and hills answering back my echoes and then I will turn and he is there! A Scorpio boy he is more than a little special..
I hate early mornings but he makes them more fun..
I wonder what ship you are flying, not sure what mine is either..
Love the him and Rumi also, great post thank you.

Annie said...

Thank God for happy endings.

Hilary said...

Laura, there is a Presence in the Kosmos that cares for us and all the beings we love, who loves, is concerned. This Presence nurtures in life and in death--you know this! So, we can trust this Presence to offer only the best for us and ours. With this knowledge we can therefore turn our panic to praise, our suffering to joy, and our losses to gathering, and our troubled hearts to peace. Easy to know, hard to live out, but nonetheless, truth, so don't beat me up the next time I'm on your table.

Elizabeth said...

Fantastic post -- I loved the energy in it and the quick humor. I especially loved the sentence "What must it be like, to be so calm?"

My boys have always loved Waldo, too, and my eight year old actually dressed as him this past Halloween.

Thanks for the Hafiz -- I haven't read that poetry in a long time and feel like pulling it down and perusing, again.

Kim and Victoria said...

Emerson sounds like a dog I would enjoy knowing.

Ditto your friend Hafiz.

Bimbimbie said...

My heart was in my mouth reading the opening lines and then the panic I was running around your place with you. Grinning about him crying and then standing still or leaning against the door waiting for you to mother him. I have a black cat who loves to squeeze in behind/under anything and fall asleep, then wakes up crying like an abandoned kitten because she's not sure where she is. I think there's some sort of telepathy at work between pets and their human family *!*

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