Category: writing Page 1 of 24

The More Things Change

If you look at something five ways, how can it seem different on the sixth?


We return to the sea again and again. This, the sixth year of spending a week in Cherry Grove, this the first year of the new normal, the post-pandemic stranglehold more or less released. Things appear different.

First, our vista: our friends’ condo at the beach’s point changed hands, and after five summers we had to search for a new place. Serendipity being the kind saint that she is, I discovered a colleague owned a place just half a mile away. We are here, oceanside.

Things are physically different. The pier on the north end of the beach is missing a ninety-foot portion of its middle. The end of the pier (or most of it) still stands, stranded in the water, planks reaching out shore-side, waving for help. This damage is almost a year old; last August, Hurricane Isaias swept across this sandy string and took the pier’s belly with it. The dunes on that side of the beach have been clawed away by angry seawater. The beach moved.

Beachhead

A short quote from an article I read:

“It’s a miracle when one man, standing in his place, is able while remaining there to put himself in another man’s place, to send his imagination forth to establish a beachhead in another man’s spirit, and from that vantage point so to blend with the other’s landscape that what he sees and feels is authentic. … To experience this is to be rocked to one’s foundations.”

Rev. Howard Thurman

Tilt

On life’s strange encounters with chance…and golf.


Indulge me. Follow along for just a minute. Think about all of the things that have happened in your life that have just fallen into place–life’s quiet serendipity–the universe’s tilts that steer you one way or another. It can be the sort of thing that brings a chuckle in a quiet moment. Or a weepy joy. Or a dazed feeling.

I think about the luck I had when I needed to change jobs and leave teaching. That one’s simple–I wanted a different job and they needed to fill a position and it worked out so well it turned into a new career. We can go deeper–a long-ago college friend whose young boy’s brain grew a tumor, the sort that is decidedly stubborn to remove without complications. I think of all the cellular decisions and revisions that multiplied into mass.

Hard to stare something like that down–a boy in a children’s hospital in dire straits–and then take these cosmic coincidences kindly. Easy to call the benevolent strokes of luck divine intervention. Not the darker ones.

Keep following.

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