ALSO A GIFT
Sadness is as life affirming as joy, but in the same way that people eat together but defecate alone, joy is encouraged in public and sadness is a private matter. Happiness is embraced and discouragement relegated, even though personal experience shows disappointment is often a point of growth. What beauty and change stem from disillusion, but still it is hard to look directly at grief and not flinch away. The temptation to feign pleasure and leave sadness swept under the carpet is strong. It is an unwelcome job to be the defender of grief, a job that should be unnecessary, in the same way that the valley between the mountains is unnecessary to defend. We are not giants who can step from one mountaintop to the next.
Try a new game for body, mind and laughs.
Ping Pong Balls and Possession
I keep an aquarium with a goldfish on my counter
and sometimes he splashes my work
proving to me that the thing I think I have contained
often has a mind of its own.
I have heard that goldfish don’t remember much,
but mine always knows which side of the tank
provides him a view of me.
Memory may be reflexive.
Assumption possibly is as well.
I must keep a fresh account of what is within my grasp
and what can swim away.
I have heard the many fish tales
from the part of me that likes to lie.
The scales shimmer and lure me to pretend control
when in truth it is all just a game of chance.
You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault