Thursday, October 19, 2006


I discovered this poem via Mamacate:

Petals in the Dirt

Ellen Dore Watson

Your words circle, mine batter. You're a ramp, I have
no wheels. The kid who gets the brunt of our love asks us not to bicker. Think
of all the people who have lost their right
hands! The friend who says: Hug me twice,
it could be a while till the next bodyI can touch. Then there's the man who claims he wants
steady, needs steady, but each woman's a lake
he's big enough to swallow. How will hunger like that
ever learn to use a napkin? When you bring me
tenderness, it looks like one more thing
I don't have time for. Maybe when it comes
to love, the happily long-married are the biggest
fools. I'm fervent but off-and-on about my roses
--how many of us are delirious when the twenty-sixth
blossom does its gorgeous thing? I wonder
if when I get home those petals will still be
luminous and melting in the dirt. I'm thinking
maybe I need them. I'm saying what would I do
without your mouth?

--from This Sharpening

Eleven years ago today, I married the love of my life. I have written about our wedding before - it was wonderful and romantic, and entirely indicative of our mutual inclination to walk away from the crowd and do what we believed in, rather than what was expected. We have faced plenty of adversity over the years - prolonged separations, pregnancy complications, colicky-baby-crankiness syndrome, ongoing parenting challenges - and have emerged from each stronger, more settled, more robust.

Now that we have embarked on the next big adventure, turning our backs on the North American dream of working round the clock just to leverage the largest possible mortgage, shelving lucrative careers and moving into a tiny apartment in order to be where and who and what we believe in, now that we have pared down all the trappings of identity and success to the bare essentials, we realize more acutely than ever that this marvelous many-layered gift of being "us" is all that ever mattered.