“Look, God.” I shouted, earlier this morning. “I’m still standing,” which wasn’t quite true. More like leaning. But upright, both feet planted firmly on the imperfect kitchen floor. I gazed hungrily out the north window. Not much had changed since yesterday. River steady. Nothing of substance, nothing ethereal suggesting itself.
At eye level, the horizon is deceptively close and the terrain between here and there seems…ah seems….oh fuck, what’s the word I’m looking for? Passable, hikeable, doable? My vocabulary shrinks and coarsens as my synapses thicken and collapse under the weight of age. I’m becoming simple—far less complex than dirt.
I have a plan. It involves five larges stones placed so that rainfall will drain to the pond instead of the basement. God has more or less approved this plan. “Yes,” God said, looking things over. “It’s best to make gravity your friend. Defiance rarely works in the long run.”
But this is hard for me. I love the tingle of perennial youth. My inner vision suits up, ready to have a go at the burly outer images I see in the mirror, so tangible and sure of themselves. Inner youth against Outer reality. Game on.
Game over. The lights go out, the teams pack up their gear, and stunned, I run to the parking lot. “No,” I yell at the top of my lungs. “Come back. This isn’t over.” My inner vision limps as it boards the bus for home. Life is too damn short for all this Outer reality.
I glimpse my image in the calmer part of the river, my bones giving way to water. It’s clear I’ll be gone someday. I wonder how to break this news to God. I know God will miss me terribly, and I’m sad about that. It occurs to me that I will miss myself as well.
4 thoughts on “Defiance”
I never pass up a chance to read your work Rita. I’d love to read your other blog too? As I face into the concept of retiring 100%, which really implies facing into the reality of my OWN aging, I’d welcome more of your perspectives. It’s cold and blustery here along coastal Maine. May we both be cozy and warm. Jeannie
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You are the BEST Jeannie. I imagine you reading in a cozy corner in Maine and it always makes me happy. Hugs.
My eyes light up when your blog notice comes into my email box, Rita. Your reflections on living -and dying- into life are raw and authentic and so beautifully crafted. All our bones will eventually become one with water-the river or the sea, as in the story of the salt doll. Thank you for your courage and your writing. Anytime is good for me, as far as when to send. I always read it. Sometimes three times over. ❤
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Jean, your insights and support are invaluable. Thanks for reading and taking time to connect. Rita