Thursday, January 29, 2009

Delicious Fishes

There are moments when I catch a wisp of wistfulness for a life less ordinary.

Don't get me wrong - I love my life. It's a full and happy life, when I consider and add up the sum of the parts, and divide that by the possibilities. Sure, we could have more money and things, but would they really make us any happier than we are right now? I don't believe it. I have the now-rare luxury of not only being at home with my children, but also having the time to pursue writing, painting, an obsession for historical research, as well as the surprising joy of working as a volunteer tutor. I am rich indeed, in things more vital than spending money and shiny cars.

But sometimes, when the bustle of the boys is off at school and work, and I'm here in the rippling pool of silence, glimmers of dreams from the bottom of my mind resurface. Old half-forgotten fantasies swim up and catch themselves upon a fishing line I didn't even realize I'd cast out. Reeling in these catches I see them for the sodden boot, or old tire they are, and throw them back with a rueful laugh at what swims in the depths of my mind. But looking deep into the pool I see, swimming at the bottom, an elusive silvery school of fish who glint and shimmer with delicious potential, and I'm suddenly, ravenously, hungry.

And yet, I have said I am happy, content, so why search and crave for something more that perhaps would ruin my desire for what already is? The answer lies deep within me, perhaps even within all of us: an innate dis-satisfaction with wholesome fare, a desire for piquancy to flavor our perceptions, even at the risk of upsetting our philosophical stomachs, and retching forth that which sustains us.

We are all so much more than we appear on the surface, the shoulda coulda wouldas layered like so many coats of lacquer; each a separate chapter, regret, or dream of our lives, our selves. They combine to create an outer shell that gives no hint to the diverse layers it's actually made up of. Here, on this page, I am the same as I would seem to you in person. I have no patience for subterfuge, to be other than I am. But I confess: I have a secret longing for the sweet meat of those dream fish, spread upon the cracker-like layers of my inner selves.

13 comments:

hele said...

oh that last paragraph just gave me gooseflesh all over at its delicious beauty.

Chris said...

This was fantastic! Like a modern-day version of Anne Morrow Lindbergh's "Gift From the Sea".

I second your emotion, and understand each word you carefully selected to describe your thoughts. Absolutely wonderful. Really.

A Free Man said...

What a wonderful post! I think it's innate in a lot of people to be on the look out for something 'better'. It's a tricky one, though, because if you spend too much time with 'if only's" and "what if's" you'll miss the beauty of what you have. Sounds like you're striking the right balance.

Vodka Mom said...

You are really incredible. Your writing is lovely, and your thoughts are poignant.

xoxox

FairiesNest said...

Gorgeous writing...sigh...

...and my word verification is "verse" how appropriate!

Gypsy said...

This was sublime. Truly. And I could so very much relate.

flutter said...

you are beautiful.

Braja said...

WBT, you're a poet....

But would you have to kill the dream fish to spread them on the cracker? Cos that would be kinda sad... :)

Bekah said...

kitty, kitty, lookin' at the pretty fishies...

i think it is human nature to desire, to constantly seek pleasure, despite the richness of the taste upon which we currently feed.

some say it is even the root of suffering.

kitty cats just like to play...

hele said...

oh. the listening for that meow, the wanting to recapture all the moments that at the time we did not realise was sacred just because they were still there.

my heart is aching with yours and i wish for you a dream in which you find each other again*

Arizaphale said...

I read this the other day and was so full of things to say I couldn't decide where to start!
Beautiful writing and I am with Chris here. I understand exactly what you mean and I applaud your beautifully chosen words. I long to have time to write like this (as if I could) but the haste of my life sees me dashing off streams of consciousness drivel. Maybe that's my fish?
May we all enjoy the possibility of that elusive silvery shoal!

Bantering Bibliocrat said...

Thanks again for a wonderful post, and for reminding me how slippery living in the moment can be...

Maggie, Dammit said...

This was gorgeously written.

Now I'm hungry, too.