an ordinary day

Thanks to the Daily Challenge for the invitation to share this writing:


For ten days I lived the learning curve
of diabetes, partnering with my beloved son
to help his through maternal leave,
given the grace of time to relish
each extraordinary moment.

The first hour’s sing-song babbling
lifts from crib to giggled hugs and undercover
hide-and-seek en route to the day’s first blood glucose test
followed by calculations of insulin and carbs,
breakfast planned to even out
the hours to come.

This child, so gentle and joyful of spirit
accepts each poked finger and prodded thigh
with grace, a lesson I cannot fail to notice sets
the warp of our day through which we weave
our patterned way, each hour
a new adventure.

From Grandma’s blocks we build
to hold what he loved at the aquarium –
octopus by the elevator climbing glass walls,
his giant purple sac blowing up bigger then smaller
carefully reconstructed through his two-year
old imprint, giant tank within winding
ramp, sea lions sunning beyond.

He recalls with pride how he placed his hand
in the pool where flat rays swam shallow circles
requiring him to dip, lean and shriek with surprise
when the flappy gray surface floated beneath
outstretched fingers, feeling like velvet
fleet and brief, tickling his hand
again and again.

We chant the trains that took us there —
‘one train, two train, three train, blue train’
and back – ‘one train, two train, red train, bed train’
to test, insulin, lunch and rest. Later, we’ll
relive the adventure with Brio trains,
tunnels and bridges arcing us
back to the present.

Past supper the day’s reduced
to favorite books, moonlight and song
stories lingering among the family
of bears lining his crib, a round
of Dona Nobis Pacem circling
him in love’s embrace.

How the layers unfold like
an origami crane in flight; then settle
back to nest, each hour building bridges
between love and need, grace wrapping
itself around this wondrous gift
of an ordinary winter day.
swb ©2017


Today’s Discover WP prompt is a most persuasive invitation to share an experience of learning that has stuck with us.

The year was 1984. Following a casual beach walk in deep February, I found myself the proud owner of a major fixer-upper village colonial house on a hill. The walk was when my friend offered to provide a downpayment if I would live in and improve the house. Sweat equity would be my contribution. After three years we would split the proceeds of its sale. Meanwhile, we would split major repairs. I would do everything but plumb, wire or roof. And believe me, that left QUITE a lot of room within out agreement to keep me busy.

I would return from work, strip to my work clothes and get to work. The demolition was fun – ripping off gold-stippled mirror tiles from the living room wall; ripping up indescribably grody green carpet the dog repeatedly mistook for grass; opening the wall between kitchen and dining room; removing three layers of utterly damaged ceiling; ripping off fake wallboard and trim over lovely, oversized windows to discover their hacked-off plinths (which I later found a mill to replicate). In short, a lot of removing and revealing that finally led to restoring and revitalizing. Continue reading