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Another beautiful day.
What is it about this cosmic turning of things that makes it possible for one person to feel overwhelmed and nourished by the bounty and beauty of the world, and another to be in the midst of its greatest pains?
I know that it's been explained by a number of people over the centuries, and its reasons range through the influencing spectra of luck, karma, fate, choice, endorphin chemistry, privilege, capacity, work, deific or malefic intent or whim, or some odd combination of the preceding.
I'm tempted to contemplate the laws at work, on the off-chance that I can repeat some of the magic formulae, and bring the goodness and the nice things closer. But it defies the rules that I try to put it safe within, and I'm reminded that one can't keep ephemeral understandings like these.
The smart ones would say not to poke or prod it too deeply.
It was another beautiful day. I drove up the river with Jeanette Reynolds, a woman who joined my store in 1991 and has, over the last decade, grown into one of my very best friends.
What a delight and a gift to have someone work for you who works *with* you. We've been through so much together - and yet, not so much together as simply alongside one another, doing the work we were doing, married to the men we were married to, leaving and burying them, coming apart, moving on - and so very much of it has been moving on.
We loaded plants, and then had breakfast. We went to a local potters' show and saw our friends and their work on display. We collected more plants, and then drove up the McKenzie to Horse Creek.
It really is a very good drive for talking. It's just about an hour, up a gently winding, lightly sloping river road. The valley runs east/west, so the light is usually some version of gorgeous. Trees meet across the road now and then, and the talk can get intimate with the seclusion the shadowed lane provides.
Every now and then, the way opens onto a valley of golden fields and farm houses, with the river's ridge companions off to either side, lined with sometimes solitary sentinel trees alone in the clear cut squares of the ubiquitous stump quilt that pocks the hills of the Northwest.
Conversations can take those turns, too, opening into wide fields and meandering through grassy swales as aimless as Oregon bottomland. Our talking was like that, and we touched on so many things.
One especially laugh-filled topic was the subject of making love on horseback (neither of us have, and a friend of hers was hankering for such an experience). After my Southern Magnolia button was pressed and got over her shock at considering such a thing, I blurted out "Finally, a reason for the trot!".
I've done a *lot* of riding, and actually remain skeptical about how well the fantasy would stand up to the reality. We did, however, decide that draft horses were best, because they *are* the size of a twin bed: she opted for a western saddle, but I think the fewer distractions, the better. My final suggestion for her was to remember to tie up the horse.
I'd mentioned in one of my notes to you that I was looking forward to "writing my science fiction novel". I wasn't kidding. I actually have one. I've been working on the story for years, because it's primarily my favorite vision of How the World Could Be. Jan's heard several of the major plot developments over the last couple of years, and today was a perfect day to tell her more of the story.
It kind of writes itself this way. I almost have enough structure for it to take shape - it's still in its pre-written stage, like the "undifferentiated slurry" of plant cells before they hit some critical Beingness mass and split up the various tasks of becoming a tree, or whatever the DNA plan has determined to be.
It is now a definite story. I know who the main people are. I know what they're about. I know the dramas they get to play around. And soon, when I finish with the store, I will need a vessel for all the energy that has to go into words and thoughts, and can't reside in my songs, and this story will be ready to be that place.
Maybe I'll tell you about it here, in some later time.
We unloaded plants and I did chores. We had a scrumptious lunch of Cinnamon Walnut bread, almond butter and fresh marionberry jam, with a half a bottle of cheap Italian white wine. We swam in the hot spring, watched the sun go over the ridge, and then drove down the river valley, chasing the sun all the way.
I feel sated.
a spark of love out to you, wherever....
-- Anonymous, October 14, 2001