Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Only Time

Those years don't last forever,
but then again, neither do these.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Storms of Spring and Summer

I sit on the balcony. The air is warm and hangs limp. Clouds are banking, reflecting amber city light, so the night is not so dark. The first cold draft of air blows in from the southwest. The potted flowers are all nestled away, secured so the winds won’t blow them from their perch. A neighbor’s strange, little lawn-ornament, a man in a canoe, rows wildly. The leaves on the trees do a rain-dance: half-waltz, half madman’s lunge.

I sit head in hands, watchfully. Cigarette smoke wafts from somewhere downstairs, so I know I’m not the only one sitting out here on a night like this. Lightning flickers in the clouds and the thunder responds. “Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry,” fourth grade.

Today I sat with a fifth grader, who was weeping about friend problems. I remember those days. I gathered all my compassion of remembering about me and let her know that I believed her in all her misery. “Fifth grade is hard,” she said. On the inside I smiled as I saw this beautiful, dazzling child in front of me, who will be out of school in two weeks and who is well-loved by family and is filled to the brim with strength and resilience. But I remember the devastation of being singled out by a former friend in grade school. Don’t we all? So I sat with her in her tears. She’ll find a way.

It’s much easier to see from this end of things. The rain is coming down now, loud and steady. It’s making quite a racket on the window panes and air conditioner. In the morning, the grass will need mowed again, and dandelions will have sprouted, and life will have happened, despite (or because of?) the storms.