Tuesday, January 15, 2013

One Brilliant Day

The stratus prevailed.

This morning, half the sky was an amazing flying circus of cirrus clouds, swooshing this way and that, combining with altocumulus in a holy mackerel circus, and even jollying a pallet of gray cirrostratus undulatus. It was quite a show at eight a.m., and the sky was a wide-eyed arena of barnum and bailey blue. I was glad I'd given in and driven Matt to school just to see that madcap chalkboard from a stoplight ringside seat.

But now it's three twenty-three and the sky is all pale gray, all stratus, vast as an elephant's backside. Betokening change. The meteorologists can read the signs. The rest of us are dumbfounded gawkers and sky illiterates, except for a field guide knowledge of the basic Latin names paired with a page of photos. Except those don't show the change, and weather is an ocean of change. An ocean of Chang. A sea surface full of changes, like that great poem by Wallace Stevens, "Sea Surface Full of Clouds."

Yesterday's notes:  

The thaw continueth. Must be close to sixty today. We are 
grinning our way into global warming like frogs admiring the roomy quarters of an alligator's maw. 

Me too. I've got my soup and corn muffin outside of Jam 'n 
Java on a picnic table for all to see as an advertisement of the day. Though someone might justly tell me, "Don't encourage it." Like the mother I passed on the bike path who was telling her child: "Old Man Winter says, 'It's not time for spring 
flowers!' "  Which in turn reminds me of a line in a poem by 
Antonio Machado, translated by Robert Bly. It's the last line:

The Wind, One Brilliant Day     
The wind, one brilliant day, called to my soul with an odor of jasmine. 'In return for the odor of my jasmine, I'd like all the odor of your roses.' 'I have no roses; all the flowers in my garden are dead.' 'Well then, I'll take the withered petals and the yellow leaves and the waters of the fountain.' the wind left. And I wept. And I said to myself: 'What have you done with the garden that was entrusted to
Have we woken our garden up when it should be sleeping?
Will the four inches of snow
tomorrow lull it back to sleep?

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