Novak (novak) wrote,

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Personal: The New Roommate; The 40th Anniversary of Apollo 11; Linford Poem on Grace

Sophie, who is at the height of her two-and-a-quarter cuteness, is wonderfully chatty when she's not sleepy/grumpy. When I pack up and head home, I often would ask her, like her sisters before her, if she wants to come back to Milwaukee with me and live at my place, just so I can watch her yelp and hold on to Mom, or to laugh once she realizes I'm teasing her. Today the joke was on me when she seemed to think that that was a perfectly delightful idea and happily mentioned it all the way to the airport, where I was catching my bus back north. When I tried to tease her a bit more with how different an arrangement that might be, she declined both options of sleeping in the bathtub or on the couch once she arrived, being apparently confident that she rated the best part of the apartment and that I would find the couch perfectly comfortable, myself. Leslie picked up on the fact that Sophie perhaps thought I lived at the airport, and Sophie managed to keep her eyes open almost all the way there, despite having skipped her nap earlier this afternoon. So I told Leslie to tell her when she woke up that I didn't bring her with me because I didn't want to wake her up. I hope she handled the disappointment.

I found that, to my slight surprise, or perhaps a feeling of of some obligatory disappointment with myself that I couldn't quite conjure up, that I haven't managed to get too interested in the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, other than mentioning it in passing this weekend to Joe or to the nieces. I'm pleased, though, to see how many people have been noting it, and taking advantage of the internet's sudden availability of recordings and real-time replays of the transmissions between Apollo 11 and Houston. I owned a set of LPs along with a huge coffeetable book on the subject – still do, I guess, over under the TV in the next room – that had me so saturated with those recordings in grade school and junior high that I could recite the dialogue along with the astronauts, but at the time that just made me a geeky kid. I'm relieved everyone else has tipped their hand and revealed their own inner geek. It really is that fabulous an epic.

Instead, since getting home around dinnertime, I've been more distracted by such rarities as this poem I tripped across in the Internet Archive (the attempt at making a copy of the whole internet if you've never found this site and lost time to it) when I was trying to find some old information on Over The Rhine's website.
Grace Asked A Question

The bottom line is the spilled wine
The ruby lake on the table
Dripping on my knees
Like the tears of the blind man
Who newly sees

The bottom line is the familiar ache
Too real to shake
Too hard to explain
Too easy
Like a prism of colors in the rain

The bottom line is the warm blood
That seeps its way out of my cold heart
To the beat of a drum
Always carried
All the time
Always a rhythm rhyming inside
Making of me a tall awkward song

The bottom line is the sometimes welling up in the eyes
That the noisy world
All too eagerly dries
With whatever it happens to be selling
At the time

Or is the bottom line this?
Beauty and terror on a blind date
Moving each other close
Dancing a slow motion universe bending down sarabande
Locked staring each into the others eyes
As if for the first
Or the last

The bottom line is some unknown unspoken word
I need another word
For that which comes out of nowhere
So good
Like a smiling child
Glimpsed in a room full of strangers
A room full of good things to eat
As if it has all been somehow prearranged:
She's smiling at me
Even though we both know
We'll never meet

copyright 2001, Linford Detweiler
Tags: astronomy/space, grace and freedom/nature, historical, over the rhine, sophia

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