Puts me in mind of Emily Dickinson, who thought about these things on occasion:
The grieved are many, I am told;
The reason deeper lies,—
Death is but one and comes but once,
And only nails the eyes.
I guess. Frankly, I'd rather get off this train of thought.
While discussing a story in class the other day, I almost fell out of my chair. Literally. I have this habit of rocking back and forth, but had thought myself safe because the floor was carpeted and the chair mounted on a three-wheeled tripod. But somehow I managed to tip sideways, and in the midst of elucidating all the subtleties of James Joyce's "Araby", found myself suddenly gripping the desk in speechless desperation to keep from falling over. I was 45 degrees to the floor, doing a stationary wheelie, every muscle straining to win this battle against the foreseen outcome: utter humiliation. I righted myself, but now the conversation was interspersed with giggling. Especially from the girls. They love that kind of thing. But I couldn't blame them. A few years ago, in a classroom with no carpeting, and sitting in a chair with wire rims for legs, I tilted backwards just a little too far and simply disappeared from view. As if greased, the rims went out from under me and I was sitting on the floor. For the class, it must have been as if some vortex had sucked me from sight. They couldn't see me because of the metal skirting on the desk's front. All they could see above the desk were my fingers still gripping the back edge. I never regained control that day. Here I'm trying to teach them something important and they're sitting there trying to stifle giggles behind their hands. I told them to go home and play video games.
After the "Araby" class, I ran into a couple of the girls in front of the library, a pretty redhead and a pretty Puerto Rican who's already signed up to join the Air Force at semester's end.
"You're talking about me, aren't you?"
"Yeah!" Giggle, giggle.
"I'd have thought you'd admire the balancing act. After all, I didn't fall over."
"You're silly girls, you know that?"
"Yeah!" Peals of laughter.
Speaking of students, my wife had to chaperone a field trip to Sea World and managed a few photos:
She also visited Elizabeth, who's doing a guest turn with the QuadCities Ballet, and got a shot of her in a Rock Island laundromat.
And from me you get this excerpt from a TV documentary, just cuz I think these are one of the neatest creatures God made:
See it here.
Oh, and by the way - while we're on the subject of cycling through life - I should have posted something on the anniversary of Terri Schiavo's death (guess what I was doing), but the failure was not the result of forgetting. We're giving over some of the next issue of The Christendom Review to her cause, so please try to keep it in mind. It should be out within the month.
Well, the purpose of this post was to inform readers that I'm a bit taken up for now, and might not be posting for a while, just in case anyone who'd been checking in here and not seeing anything thought that might be about to change. I like the consistency of cycles. They let me know I'm still alive.
I suppose I ought to get into a semi-Sunday Thought frame of mind, since it's that day of the week. So here's a song for Terry. Maybe it'll lift her up a little.
And it's here.