Saturday, July 30, 2011

totally complicated

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying
to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

I gather sweet & charming -- it is what I do. At flea markets, in people's garages, in overgrown farmyards, in dark crannies -- I am searching for sweetness & charm -- collecting, bringing home to display or sell at the antique mall or at my biannual Barn Sales. I covet these things - I do. And, I live on this farm -- where sunflowers grow out of weed beds, kittens sleep with goats, and a day may just begin with the song of a wren at your window. If I look beyond the daily work, the worn edges -- it is often quite magical, certainly very sweet.

But, by day - I work for a Community Action Agency - an agency that works to alleviate poverty -- not so sweet, not so charming -- and totally complicated. Home is sanctuary for me -- where I run to to get away from injustice, small thinking, and sometimes overwhelming work. When I can't fix the world, I certainly know I can weed the garden. When I can't understand the turning of a back, I can hold a kitten. When I wake at 2 a.m. wondering why & how, I can look at my little guys all around me -- little friends on shelves & table tops that reach out and say, "be still my heart".

One night I was driving along a single lane & busy stretch of highway --- cars streaming fast in both directions....dark, dark night. Two eyes were caught in my headlights -- those of a raccoon -- running down the center line -- caught between two lanes of cars traveling fast. Running, running -- right on the line, right down the middle of the road. There wasn't anything I could do, but try not to hit the poor fellow. I wanted to stop, but didn't know quite how. I wanted to help, but didn't know quite how. That image haunts me. In my sweet Kari world, that raccoon eventually found a way off the center line -- moved left or right and ran for his life off the road, safe in the woods - curled up in a tree for the rest of the night. In the real world, I am guessing the story didn't really end that way. Totally complicated -- it all is, it all is.

So -- to stay true to oneself -- we mix up all this stuff -- the good, the bad, the sweet, the ugly....stir and stir and stir and stir. Sometimes we run down the middle of the road, sometimes we grow in the middle of the weeds, sometimes we curl up in a tree and pray that sanctuary will remain until morning.....and sometimes we collect little friends, little things so sweet & charming to remind us that all can be simple & pure & nice. Totally complicated. It is.

That's what I think today.

1 comment:

Kari from Meadowview Farm said...

Don't mean to burden anyone -- or heaven forbid, worry anyone with these heavy thoughts. Certainly I could always just post fluff -- but that is not really being very true to me or you. I am filled with all kinds of ideas & thoughts -- often many are light, sometimes they are deeper. And that my dear is life on my 1857 farm in Wisconsin. Insert a wink & smile & perhaps a sigh here.
I am totally complicated -- and glad to be so. Kari

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