the anti

this morning, waiting in line at the coffee shop, i spotted on the 'take one' counter, a bumper sticker which read (in defiance of the old western adage): "if anything can go well, it will."



a few summers ago, on a road trip with stephen bright, human being extraordinaire and president of the southern center for human rights, i became quite taken with his ability to treat each question i asked (questions i imagined he'd likely been asked hundreds of times) as if it was the first time he'd been asked. he responded with such thoughtfulness and enthusiasm--quite a feat, given the emotionally taxing nature of anti-death penalty litigation.

since that time, i've often thought that i, too, want to have as my life's work, that thing i am that passionate about each time i speak of it. perhaps this is a symptom of youthful optimism, a disposition certain to fade with time and disappointment. still, i'm fine holding on to it for as long as i can; it gives me hope. and really, i don't yet imagine the alternative.



last night, at the invitation of a dear friend, i went to a live screening of the pbs independent lens documentary, "motherland afghanistan," a harrowing look at the chaotic state of women's health care in the nation, since the 2001 american invasion. the parts that would otherwise move me to tears, did not. i felt unnaturally stoic. this morning, i wonder whether i have become somewhat desensitized to human suffering, or am just holding my breath.


freestyle smoothie

i'm a sucker for quick and easy food creations. i experimented with the following ingredients until i got the smoothie that fills my taste for rich, peanut-buttery things:

some plain yogurt
some (soy) milk
some smooth peanut butter
a ripe banana (cold or frozen)
dash of vanilla extract

liquefy ingredients in blender. enjoy!

so it is said

a green butterfly is rare--at least i was told, when i shared with a friend that lately and repeatedly, i've spotted one. in my backyard; at the swimming pool; outside my favorite coffee shop. it is all just as well, i imagine. if i had to choose a natural symbol of my current state, it would likely be that moment from pupa to butterfly: no longer the old, not fully the new. without doubt, i am being pushed out of my comfort zone. this, i think, is good.


the way here

a week or so away from home, i returned yesterday to find my (assumed) dead plants in the earliest stages of renewal: the elephant ear whose 5ft. stature had crumbled to a stump and the four o'clock whose flowers had dropped one by one until nothing remained but the plastic bucket of earth, had sprouted several new stalks and leaves.

i thought first of the natural life cycle; then, of the premature abandonment of matters that are simply in gestation. i remembered that perhaps in those moments we're most doubtful, the circumstance is merely turning over into itself, preparing for something new; that maybe if we just let go for a bit--understand that some things are outside of our immediate control, and demand our patience--we might be surprised by life's impending generosity.