Change of View

I often wonder what inspired God to get into the business of creation. It’s obviously a work of love, but there are so many booby traps embedded along the way. The lack of smooth sailing for any amount of time suggests negligence. Or distractibility. Or inebriation. Literal and figurative landmines blow up innocent people, and the rain falls on the just and the unjust.

“So, Intelligence-Who-Sets-Things-in-Motion, what do you have to say for yourself?” I ask. I’m not in a good mood. We just moved ourselves from one condo to another. I’m tired.

“Good morning to you, too,” God smiles.

I sit breathing quietly, letting the smile of God wash over me, bringing both relief and the usual touch of terror. My watery eyes take in the new view through a different set of sliding glass doors. Last night, we slept in the old place, but this morning, I dragged the coffee table, frying pan, and my favorite cup to the new place, and here I am. Awake. With toast. And here’s God, smiling. And here’s the morning, arriving without apology, under the weight of so many newly dead, so many starving children, so many imprisonments, so many billionaires. I turn off the news, vaguely ashamed of myself. Angry at the capacity of humans to justify their self-serving, violent, deluded choices.

God is doing a silly dance around the boxes and displaced furniture.”Creation is my middle name,” she says. “I love trying out new ideas. I love diversity.” She pulls a bucket of sunglasses from behind her back—the lenses are densely colored–green, red, pink, orange, blue, black, green, purple—but none are clear. “Try them all,” God says.

“No thanks,” I say. “I’m retired.”

God laughs. I blow my nose. The new skyline is both urban and wild. I remember a defiant peace sign on the lowly hills. The majestic Mission Mountains are north of here, out of view, but close enough to feel their power rising. Peace signs come and go. Even mountains don’t last forever. They face erosion unafraid, taking comfort from flocks of noisy crows and the vast truth of sky.

I give God one last accusatory look and uncross my arms. “Okay,” I say. “I’ll try purple. But take the orange away. I’d rather see clearly, but if my vision is going to be tainted, I appreciate having a choice.” God hands me the purple glasses and sets the orange ones on the table beside my stack of masks.

“Thanks,” I say, halfhearted. God nods and hands me a beer and my vitamins. “Work up to it,” she says. She’s smiling again. Her cheerfulness, like the massive track lighting in this place, seems a bit much. I’d like a little less light.

4 thoughts on “Change of View

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