Friday, August 24, 2012
HAIL AND AWE
What I did not know yesterday, while I sniffed the fragrances of my garden and pondered a blogging sequence in which to rank them, what I did not know, because I was not paying attention to it, was that the atmosphere had busied itself mixing hot and cold in just the right formula to produce magnificent ice balls that would have served nicely to cool a summer beverage. What I did not know, because I was attending to other things, was that the atmosphere was preparing to shower the garden with ice balls, pummelling, pounding, bombarding, propelling them with such force that they found their way to the floor of the covered veranda. What would I have done differently if I had imagined the ferocity of the gathering storm? What would I not have done at all? If you don’t count the time you spent comforting a trembling lapdog, or hunkering down with your family, or trolling the house for open windows that ought to be closed, there is not a lot you can do in a hail storm. If I had been aware a moment earlier, I would have protected the patio pot of Tiny Tim tomatoes that later disconnected from the mother plant to roll among the hailstones. And beyond that, I would have lamented the coming worry, not having the heart for celebrating the olfactory delights of the moment. Rising today, slithering down the sidewalk among the shredded foliage, I would not have written the fragrant salutations that came so easily yesterday. . But I did write them, because I was not paying attention to the whole picture, and because of that they are written where I can read them tomorrow and next month and later on in January. So, with apology to the Tiny Tims, I find no regret to utter. I will recall with awe and humility those few moments when the world around us banged and roared, that interval of chaos when Nature reminded us that, regardless of the direction where our attentions focus, she may choose at any instant to take charge.