Monday, June 10, 2002

Monday Journal
Just another weekend, but still--
Friday night in New Haven, Canal Days Festival, a long main street shut off from traffic and full of rides and junk food, people and noise and music. Walk further down and through the merchant's tent, the craft tent, the food. Taco salad and pizza, chicken and sandwiches of all kinds. Lemon shakeups. Candy apples and roasted almonds. Music from a covered stage. I know that somewhere in the world there is fighting in Afghanistan, terror in Israel, unrest in India and Pakistan. But here in New Haven, I sat on bleachers on a sweet late spring night and listened to an 18-year-old Elvis impersonator from Argos, Indiana, sing "Blue Hawaii." A different kind of terror, surely, though he was on-key and heartfelt. And we wondered, how does an 18-year-old from Argos ever decided to impersonate Elvis?

Saturday at the Wizards' game, another soft warm night. A small stadium full of people--baseball fans, Cub scouts, school groups. T. working in his booth on the concourse. Low-A baseball, young 20-somethings with dreams of bigger stadiums and paychecks. Subdued ball, most of the time. A spattering of applause for the home run, the play at the plate. Kids everywhere, running after the mascot, after the cotton-candy girl, to the rest room, back to mom. Then in the 7th, the song, Take Me Out to the Ballgame, and everyone stood up and I have never heard it sung so sweetly, all those young boys' voices, unselfconcious and enthusiastic, and the sound floated through the night air as softly as a looper to left, and became a hymn to baseball and youth. Perhaps the kids will be okay.

Fireworks after, bright and loud and high, outshining the stars for a moment. We applauded with equal energy, and trailed home.

Home--kept the air conditioner off during the day both Saturday and Sunday, though the temperature was in the 80s and the humidity tropical. But to have the windows open to the sun and the breeze and the neighborhod, to welcome summer inside, was wonderful. After some chores and shopping, took my book out to the backyard and got the radio going, something to drink, my shades and my visor, and read, and baked a little. Heaven.

Finished About a Boy. Very good, nicely written, and very sad--at least to me. Marcus--anyone who's ever felt "different," any parent who's watched their child not fit in--breaks your heart. I don't know if I want to see the movie, or not. Still didn't make it to Star Wars, but I have confidence it will be in the theater awhile.
Monday, now--no H. He is just gone. That's what retirement means--he is just gone. Hard to grasp, but time will cure that. He's not coming back. I feel lighter.

First Thing

First thing this morning,
A summer sky, light blue
And the promise of later weather
In the dark shading of the horizon.
Maybe. Nothing substantial there.
High above my car,
(I speed along),
A blue heron pumps long wings,
Driving with long, graceful neck,
Trailing long legs. Where
Does he go so early?
Surely he doesn's have to
Be at the pond by eight?
(As do I.) I don't think
The ducks will chart his arrival,
Nor the geese. And the frogs
Could care less, I know.
Still he flies, beyond my view,
Soon to land, as do I,
And get to work.
I think for my next career,
I'll be a heron. Hi, frog.

[Common sense] is the best sense I know of. -- Lord Chesterfield

Link of the Day
Let's just drop everything and go to the beach.

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