Tuesday, September 30, 2014

AstroTurf Yard

There is another house I see on my usual walk. This is on the side of the street where the newer, bigger homes are. There is an unbearable monotony about their perfection. This one like its neighbors has a yard treated with chemicals to the point not one weed is in sight. There was no breeze today and the trees were still like they were made of plastic. They have a couple of nice cars in the driveway no sign of kids.

I want to imagine who lives in this perfect house where nothing is out of place. I imagine the inside is just as immaculate as the yard. The woman must never have a bad hair day and the man must be a lawyer. For some reason a lawyer comes to mind. The woman I think is a doctor. This is a house whose care is outsourced - inside and out. Whoever lives here values perfection and is willing to pay for it. They live here but their lives are probably elsewhere. 

I compare this yard to mine where the weeds are growing adamantly and profusely. They have a mind of their own. My yard is alive not synthetic and comatose like this one. I have no perfection in my life and truth be told, I am not pursuing it with a messianic zeal. I would like more perfection but lack the courage to seek it. Often the threshold of pain must be breached for perfection to follow - it is the slow, organic and painful way. No different than me trying to pull the recalcitrant weeds in my yard.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fishbowl

Thirteen years since first run
Ready to fly once again
Breathless and drowning
Suspended between sky and sea
Years meant to teach
Days meant to heal
Failed like sunsets
That never set clouds on fire
Wounds from decade and change
Spinning slowly in a fishbowl
Under hundred watching eyes

Monday, September 22, 2014

Bamboo and Pine

On warm days like today, I like talking a two mile walk that takes me to the high school in the neighborhood and back. Houses on one side of the street are a older and more idiosyncratic than the cookie-cutter boxes on the other. Some days, I pause to imagine the story of people living one of those older homes. Today was when I made up one about the house with pines and bamboos forming the fence line. Big strong trees jostling for space, often competing with each other.

Last week I was listening to Respighi's Pines of Rome at a concert, this morning was a frustrating meeting with an Italian client. So pines and Italy came to mind at once seeing those trees. I imagined an Italian man married to Chinese woman living in that house. They has planted those trees on their wedding day to symbolize their union. It would have been a long time ago, so this is an old couple now - maybe they have grand-kids and are retired. What might the exuberant growth of these tree symbolize ?  A real marriage with struggle for space, power and control but also a vibrant and evergreen relationship that has withstood the ravages of time. 

I have never seen the people who live in this house but my imagined story of who they might be turned them real for me.