Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Double-Sunrise Shell {A Tree Grows in Brooklyn}

{With Apologies to Anne Lindbergh, Betty Smith, T.S. Eliot, Leonard Cohen and Chris Lopez}

For Karen and Ralph on Their Wedding Day
August 22, 2010 ~ Full Moon Resort | Catskills | New York


One does not often come across such a perfect double-sunrise shell. Both halves of this delicate bivalve are exactly matched. Each side, like the wing of a butterfly, is marked with the same pattern; translucent rosy rays that fan out from the golden hinge binding the two together. I hold two sunrises between my thumb and forefinger. Smooth, whole, unblemished shell, I wonder how its fragile perfection survived the breakers on the beach. ~ Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea



:
Brought in by the waters of the sea, she is, quite simply, bright and dark and deep, borne from Italy to land-locked states to the Atlantic Ocean and now to the green-laden, tree-lined streets of Brooklyn--warm as the waters of her childhood summers, she is equally powerful, equally generous, equally beautiful. Forever presenting new things to be known, she swims and swims through the waters that carry her. Eternally bouyant. Eternally bright. Always moving.

::
What is love? It is this. Mermaids calling. A siren song unheard. Waves pushing those Prufrock waters white and black. When the singing comes, answer it. It's not as common as you might think. You have to know where to look. It is unusual. A gift from the unfathomable sea. You have to know how to call. It is hard work to sing out, swimming along the seawaves white and brown, to arise in the listener the idea that yes, I am singing to you.


:::
But when the call is heard, a double-sunrise shell, delicate, curious, freely given, loosens itself from the waves, rests waiting on golden sand, given to you by a kind stranger who expects nothing in return. One does not often come across such a perfect double-sunrise shell, both halves of the bivalve perfectly matched. This is love.


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He is earth, fresh air, soil beneath his feet--as rich and promising as a sunrise. The earth he sows is dark, like chocolate cake between the fingers and sweet--a thousand kisses deep. He is also light, like the air that grows nourishing sustenance from the soil--air light as an apple blossom's petal.


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Her water pours into it all, so they grew and they grow--like The Giving Tree, the Joshua tree, live oak, magnolia, pear, orange, apple--and The Tree that Grows in Brooklyn--these two halves made of themselves, one.


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So the love burst. So it pushed. Up through and into the sun, from water and earth and light. And it is simply, the light of a thousand suns.


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My wish for these precious two, my wish for you, is equally simple, equally dear, and comes from all the love in my powerful heart--a love as long as the clouds and the rains and the seas and terrains--simply, a sweet and happy life--just as it is today, right now, in the bow of the sun--among the people we impossibly, luckily, unimaginably, graciously, completely, and simply--love.

{Karen and Ralph (photo by Victor Aguilar); Double-Sunrise Shell;  Swimming; Mermaid Girl by Esther Lester;  Shells Given; Sunrise Boy, from Sore Thumb; Kissing from LoveTrains.Blogspot.com; Take me to Neverland}

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