Friday, May 9, 2014


Sometimes when I wheeled my Mom outside for fresh air, she would just look out at the world and exclaim, “Amazing!” Sometimes there’s simply nothing more to say. For no apparent reason whatsoever, I woke up this morning with that word on my lips. Grateful to have another chance to walk my way through whatever the day offered, to slog through my perpetual doubts, my disappointments, my skewed relationships, my failures— the whole catastrophe!— happy just to have the chance to do it all a bit better.

“I thank You God for most this amazing
day; for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes…”

So wrote the first poet (after Mother Goose) who captured my imagination, e. e. cummings, that lover of life (and women) who tried to diminish his ego and enlarge his participation by writing himself in small rather than capital letters. His next line was:

 “i who have died am alive again today, and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
  day of life and of love and of wings…”

Some 700 years earlier, the poet Rumi wrote:

“I was dead, then alive.
Weeping, then laughing.

The power of Love came into me…

He said, “You already have wings.
I cannot give you wings…

That I am part of the ploys
Of this game makes me
amazingly happy.”

“Dead, then alive,” “love,” “wings” and again, “amazing.” Was e.e.cummings a re-incarnation of Rumi? Did some buried part of him think as he wrote the above poem, “Hmm. I think I said this some time before.”

Amazing. I wonder if the word is connected with “maze,” the sense of being lost inside a confusing labyrinth of false paths and dead ends and then unexpectedly arriving at the prize in the center— or the doorway back out into the world. “Amazing grace… I once was lost, but now am found.”

It’s an auspicious beginning to the day here. On to school to clean up from last night’s elementary Spring Concert (an amazing event!), greet the Grandparents visiting today and prepare the songs for them to sing with their grandchildren (“These kids know 'The Sunnyside of the Street?' Amazing!”), watch a ballet dance performance from three alums, go sing with my friends at the Jewish Home and treat myself to a Friday night movie. The obvious choice?

The Amazing Spiderman 2, of course!!!

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