Thursday, August 14, 2008

Buying in Bulk

There is a
Joy
that comes only
in bulk--

In five pound bags
of mozzarella,
so big I could swim in
the white anemone promise
of endless pizza and lasagna;

In columns
of soup
standing at attention,
like British red coats,
ready to combat
the malaise of pb&j;

In a cemetery
of eggs,
stoic and grim
til they resurrect
sunny side up
on the breakfast plate;

In rows
of toothbrushes,
like candy-colored mummies
waiting in their plastic sarcophagi
for forgetful overnight guests.

There is always an extra plate to set
when the count is 175,
enough sugar to sweeten the bitter
when a 25lb bag slumps in the pantry,
enough paper to soak up the mess
when spare rolls line the uppermost shelf.

There is more than
enough.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Lost and Found

Our house has a black hole. Items fall into it at random times and they are never seen again. It takes socks, of course, but has also taken papers, brushes, sweaters, dishes, even shoes and they are never seen again. I know what you're thinking: Every household has items that go missing because of misplacement, disorganization, and forgetfulness. But I think the shoes make my case: I mean, who comes home without their shoes? And why would they be anywhere except on the ground? But after scouring under couches, behind doors, beneath beds, it seems clear that there is only one explanation for their complete and total disappearance: Our house has a black hole.
It seems to be attacking us perniciously lately. Besides taking the occasional annoying item, it seems to be seeking and taking things that are vital and precious. Lately it has taken copies of our taxes for the past 2 years, our camera with over 300 un-downloaded pictures on it, and a library book. All of these items are worth freaking out about and we have spent literally hours searching for all of them. We've combed through the car, filing cabinets, magazine racks, cupboards and drawers. We've crawled on hands and knees, climbed on chairs and beds. We even, heaven forbid, waded through our youngest sons' room and systematically sorted through their piles of clothes, toys and trash. We got the room clean, but turned up empty-handed just the same.
I figure we can find copies of our taxes somewhere--(the IRS?); and we can always fork over the money for the missing book; but the pictures? I can't go out and relive our lives for the past year. I was upset--but what could I do?
Today the library book finally came due. In a last desperate attempt to find the book, I checked and rechecked any corner or crevice a book could hide. That's when I looked behind the cabinet that holds the microwave. No book. But is that something shiny? Gingerly I pulled the cabinet out and lo and behold, there was the camera. All 354 pictures digitally safe and sound. I renewed the library book for another 14 days reprieve and then scrolled through all 354 pictures, reliving the past year one frame at a time.
I hadn't found the book, the thing I was searching for, but I had found something far more precious and irreplaceable. I have to remember that oftentimes we go in search of something and find something else far more precious. I began running in pursuit of losing weight and found a passion for running. I took a biology class to fulfill a graduation requirement and found my major. I just hope I can stay open to the opportunities that God puts in my path, that I can find the things that will help me grow and learn and pass onto others.
Now if I can only find that book....