Things I Love Thursday

manipad via flickr

manipad via flickr

The space between the particles of pollen that spin through the air during mid-June in Massachusetts is slight, but therein rests the very thing that heals the scarified earth after winters that never end. My favorite thing about this time of year is driving over the Notch on the way to work, with the windows down and quiet music drifting up around my ears. That stretch of time is the glue of my day, because it’s that sticks me to my purpose and lets patience sluice through my heart. Soul food.

  • No longer succumbing to The End of the World. Being a teacher allows a different perspective on high school, and lately I’ve been sincerely grateful for that. I’m young enough that the old hurts haven’t slipped away 100%– I can still remember feeling that dreaded My Life Is Over about smallish stinging words, and now daily I see other young people going through the same thing. My life isn’t perfect, no one’s is, but seeing things from the other side of the desk makes me realize how wonderful and insightful and lovely those tumultuous years can be, even if we don’t realize it until later on.
  • Random happy memories. Perhaps it’s in the vein of new perspectives on The Institutional Years– this week my synapses fire randomly and from those tiny sparks come moments I’d lost in time, hung from a silver chain and preserved in the delicate, soft amber of childhood. The sticky memories come to the surface when I least expect it– walking the beach in Gray Gables and remembering the cache of pearly seashells I buried in the dunes one year; touching the box of fruit LifeSavers in line at the grocery store and being surprised by the sudden tartness of lime– my grandfather always gave me the green ones; dreaming of my mother’s backyard as I knew it before we moved there, standing on my garden stool beside that same grandfather, who patiently explained the delicate care of bonsai plants and taught me that all things beautiful come from the Earth. These memories mean more to me than a hundred teenage memories, butterfly-kissed with a twinge of ignorant self-consciousness.
  • My new Moleskine blank book. I didn’t splurge and get the sketchbook– the fine paper made it too expensive for me, and I plan on writing more than drawing– but this book is perfect for a journal. The pages, unlined, are thick and feel luxurious beneath the black Sharpie pen I bought to ink my thoughts. Unlined is best for compulsives like me, otherwise even my journaling becomes regimented, and I enjoy the freedom to draw craziness and bare trees in the margins.


And everything else:
Sharpie pens; laptop repair; clean laundry & neat closets; veggie burgers and good friends; friends with farmshares who bring delicious salads over for dinner; sunshowers over the Notch; finding my coat of arms at a curiosity shoppe I’d never been to before; Saturdays in Northampton with old old friends; reconnecting with one of the people I’d dreamed about recently– I dreamed of the day she moved out of her mother’s house, and brought a scared kitten to play in my mother’s back yard. Two days later, she found me on Facebook. I guess the energy just connected.; “I own every bell that tolls me”; stars in the WMA sky; new music & impressive debuts; getting over it and marking all read.

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2 Responses to “Things I Love Thursday”

  1. Claire A Says:

    Oh my goodness, as a teacher I know exactly what you mean. There’s a particular student in my class who reminds me so much of me at 17 — really self-conscious and just painfully unable to fit in with the rest, very bright, very ballsy, always bugging me about something and actually a bit of a pain in the ass, but really awkward and shy but trying to hide it. Watching the dynamic of the class I can pick out ‘he’s the equivalent of so-and-so from my high school…’ or whatever — it’s weird how high school kids are always the same, always play out the same roles. With some of them I really feel like sitting them down and saying “you know it will all be OK — this is all bullshit and it won’t last,” but of course that’s hardly professional!

  2. Jen B Says:

    Lovely list Catherine, your writing has such a captivating & enchanting quality : )

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