Tag Archives: Jonah

Spoon Fed

Spoon of baby food being cooked with a lighter.
Hey Baybeee. Heeeeeyyy. Do you want some? Do you want to try it? Mmmmmmm. It’s good. You’ll like it. Just a little bit? Yeahhhh. Just a little bit. Open uuup. Opeennn uuuuup. Mmmmmm. Good boy. That’s a good boy. Do you want a little more? Good baby.

I am cooing and coaxing my infant to eat. I am watching his every gesture and adjusting my serenade as we go, in the mother’s chant that runs low to high and back again, the velveteen stream that jackets each word as it tumbles out. My heart is full of love and I am smiling into the song when it strikes me: I sound exactly like a drug dealer. Or, I sound exactly like the Hollywood version of what I imagine a dealer to be. My addictions are all in the sanctioned spaces of consumption, achievement and relationships; it’s harder to suss them out from the tinkle and jangle of the every day.

Are our patterns just unskillful reenactments of this scene? Are the bad habits we step into again and again, the childish groping at the most immediate and imaginable version of fulfillment? How do we start out so beautiful and end up so fucking crazy? Are we committing no offence greater than seeking again, the innocent moments when every sense was sated? When food was placed in our mouths, when our ears hummed with the sliding vibration from our mother’s throat, when all we saw were big eyes reflecting back our own love and wonder? Perhaps our lives are just a messy, gross motor gesture to go back to the source, to hold for ourselves the spoon that feeds us.

Beauty, Out and About, October

Some images today from my walk at Sheep Pasture and the community garden. Lovely fall day in Southern New England.

Woolly bear caterpillar, grass seed, grass seed, corn.

Woolly bear caterpillar, unknown, unknown, corn.

Milkweed silk, blond baby hair.

Milkweed silk, Jonah’s hair.

red berries, red vine climbing tree.

Unknown, unknown.

tomatoes

Tomatoes.

blue flower, marigold, pink flower with butterfly, black-eyed Susan, nasturtium.

Unknown, marigold, unknown, black-eyed Susan, nasturtium.

seed pods on baby sweater

Hitch hikers.

Goldenrod

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I recently sat and watched a patch of goldenrod.

Goldenrod is a succulent firework, each spiraling arm a tumble-out explosion of itty, bitty buds. Its color, the bright, white light of sunshine, layered over and over, until it becomes the dark, golden quiver of yolk. It was crawling with bees, honeys and bumbles. They would land and pick their way over the blossoms, trolling their faces through the bloom. Lift off, repeat. Sometimes they bumped each other out of the way. One bee would land on another, but there was no conflict, the first bee just moved on. It’s very random, it looks…inefficient, but it’s a pattern that ensures ample pollination. How sterile a planning matrix would make it.

A breeze gently bumped one set of flowers into another. More pollination. I felt a swell of emotion rise in my heart, and in my throat. What was I feeling? It was like when you are walking next to a good friend, someone you love. You walk slowly and close, like there is a little secret between you, perhaps just the pleasure of walking this way. And one of you leans in, on the rise of the step and touches the shoulder of the other – the gesture that is balanced precisely between a press and a bump – held for a beat until the foot touches down, and then you draw apart again, smiling. It was like that. I felt love. I felt pride at being the living compatriot these flowers, these bees, this breeze. Of being part of this system that was so beautiful, so prosperous, and so unmanaged. I felt humility for how much I construct in the name of making things better than they already are.

I sat. I watched. I sighed. The breeze sighed. The flowers sighed. Jonah, strapped to my chest, shifted and sighed. There were aphids. There was a pair of lady bugs were locked in a carnal crawl, dragging pollen behind them, their red shells winking in and out of the gold. I sat. I watched. I marveled. The humble golden rod, passive master of its own success by sweet invitation, and by simply allowing the world around it to act according to its own nature. It was such a gentle resiliency, it was stunningly beautiful.

Drinking Jonah

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You look so good. You smell so good. You sound so good. You are just a little bundle of goodness. He’s mesmerizing. I allow myself to stay lost in him for a few moments more. I bet, if I ate you, you would taste good too.

I start to wonder, what would babies taste like, if I ate them? I bet they would be delicious. Sweet, melt-in-your-mouth flesh; a concentrated flavor of lightness. Like if you made an extract of the flavor delicate. I imagine a bottle of “delicate extract” sitting in my cupboard next to the pure citrus oils. What would something like that cost? Saffron would blush at it’s own commonness. Beluga eggs would squirm beneath each other to the bottom of the tin, tucking their pearly shoulders in modesty. There would be, too, a most exquisite fat, that would crisp up beautifully. Caramelize to a rich, golden bite, a moment of gossamer crust atop the chewiness of sugar, warmed back into itself many times over. Better than the skin of a suckled pig’s belly, expertly cooked. Crispiness that would be the offspring of a sugar-snap snap, and a crumbled autumn leaf.

Yes, Jonah, you would be delicious to eat, but then you would be gone. How much nicer then, to drink you in the moments of every day. To submerse myself in you without drowning, so that I may quench my thirst to love. How many times have we done this, you and I? I have felt your face in my neck a million times. I have sighed into our caress for eons. Hello again, my darling. You feel so good.

Meditating With a Baby On

I have recently started a practice of daily meditation, and sometimes I like to experiment with meditating different ways, either out of curiosity or necessity. Today, Experiment #6: meditating with a baby on. I figured, what’s the worst that can happen? Nothing. And, as an earnest student, I’m really hoping to experience nothing, so that would actually be perfect. But something did happen.

Jonah’s breath was about three or four times faster than mine – that little pant that babies do. So I’m noticing my breath, and his breath, and how they’re different. And then I notice my pulse, or what feels like my pulse, in my body, but then I realize I can’t tell if what I’m feeling is my pulse, or his breathing. They were merged together, we had blended together into the same space, and I couldn’t tell his breath and my heartbeat apart. I had this overwhelming sense of oneness with him. And as he’s breathing, strapped across my chest and belly, I feel the energy in my upper teeth and jaw getting pushed up and down, in the same rhythm. He breaths in, my energy pushes up, he breathes out, it ebbs back down. His breath melted through my flesh, and rolled, sweetly, in and out of my body. It was awesome. It was this gentle entwinement, – two people made out of the same, shared thing, swaying into unity at the boundary lines.

And I’m feeling so happy, my heart is brimming with love, and the experience is so cool, and I’m getting more excited and happy about the whole thing, and as I do, it starts to slip away. And I think, right, right, don’t get attached to the happiness, ahhh! stop trying to live up to the expectation of pleasure you’re starting to create around what’s already happening. And I’m laughing at myself, because I’m trying so hard not to try hard, and I have pretty much no idea how to just exist. And then Jonah farts, and it smells terrible, and that makes the whole thing even funnier, and it strikes me that this exactly what life is all about: the ordinary sublime. It’s four o’clock in the afternoon, I still haven’t taken a shower, I spent two hours in the morning driving to a haircut appointment I never made it to because I got stuck in traffic, I’m meditating in my little ranch house in the suburbs, with a farting baby who is breathing in my teeth, and I am supremely happy and amused by the whole thing. I’m an incredibly ordinary human being having this beautiful spiritual experience, and I think: this is so cool, this is so cool that this is what life is like. Tears come to my eyes and I feel so much happiness and love, and I feel so good that I try to step further into the feeling, and it fades again. And I start giggling because I’m so human, and I already forgot the thing I just did a few seconds ago, but I’m so happy I don’t care. I think it’s adorable. I’m an adorable little human that’s crafted from the profound – everything about my existence is ridiculous and beautiful, and I’m so grateful to have caught, felt, actually lived, a glimpse of it. It was really cool.