Friday, October 07, 2005

Order of the Day

The problem is, see, that there's never just a single "order" to be followed. A day to clean the house and tackle the looming stack of dishes. Or a day to plant the bulbs and icicle pansies that need to get in the ground before the big rainstorm. Or a day to write that really good lecture (with visuals) that will invite my students into the past. Or a day to figure out how, where, and when to shop this behemoth of a manuscript around because it is doing me no good piled up here on the desk and it will be a long while before I have a sustained chance to revise it further. Or a day to take the Kid to see a friend's horses and wander her fields for a while to get out of the too-much-with-us of the city we live in. Nope. Today is an "all of the above" day. Plus taking back library books, arranging flowers (don't take time to smell them!), grocery shopping, and pickup/dropoff of drycleaning. It would be good if I could also get the downstairs floors mopped, but that always falls to the bottom of the list.

I'm hoping that the time in the barn sets me right. I have always loved barns and the work one does in barns. No clocks.
The cows know what to do without them, and the horses know when they are hungry without a dinnerbell. I like
a life lived by rhythm rather than by hour. (It's one of the lures of the college world; the semester has a rhythm
that pulses through it, leaving one mostly in the direction of one's time.) I also enjoy the chance to escape from the
silliness of my own concerns. As a guy I knew once said "you never see a farmer complaining about farmer's block.
He plants when it's time to plant and harvests at harvesttime." Yes. Exactly. What I'm missing in my life is fallow time.

I'm feeling better already. I'm going to go outside and plant things and let the indoor work wait until after dark.

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