Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Save It For Another Day

Kimbies, Curt and I made the walk together.
I was filled with absolute dread.
The day was young and our shadows were long, providing some distractive relief. I looked like a big girl...in my shadows.
My hair was pulled up in an "I dream of Jeanie" pony-tail. The way it swished left and right, through the air, kissing each shoulder with every step I took made me feel... a little magical.
At the curb of our destination, Kimbies grabbed my hand.
I flung her away.
'You have to hold my hand.'
'No.'
'Look at how many kids are in there. I told Mom I would get you safely to your first day of school. I don't want to lose you...so take my hand.'
p a u s e
'...now'
'I don't wanna go.'
'You're going.'
Kimbies grasped my unwilling little hand and dragged me through the gate.
The children inside this gate looked like barbarians...running, yelling, kicking sand, crying. So many kids...none of them buddied up. So many kids...all together, yet all alone.
Kimbies delivered me to a frantic looking woman holding a clipboard.
I watched Kimbies turn and walk towards Curty Boy... who stood just outside the gate.
His eyes like saucers, fore-finger hooked over nose, sucking on his thumb.
I waved to him. He lifted his free hand and gave me a small wave back and then they disappeared.
The lady with the clipboard contended with the unending line of kids.
The kids ran. They screamed. They kicked.
I watched.
'What are you doing?' she asked me.
'I don't know. What am I supposed to do?'
'Go play on the monkey bars or something'
I wandered over to the monkey bars. I climbed the rungs up and looked to the other side & saw a little girl, whom I thought was foaming at the mouth, frantically climb the other side. I waited until she got to the top before I swung out. She got a crazy, Dean Koontz-Highway smile about her face. I trellised my way across & the, her she came.
Normally when I had crossed a kid on the monkey bars, we squeezed right past one another. Not this time.
Her eyes locked with mine.
Her curly head of hair looked like a sprawling clump of tangled seaweed & fishing net, ready to take me in.
The foam at her mouth looked as if she would like to chew on my bones.
And her legs, propelled by her body weight, swung fervently.
I scurried my pads to one side of the bars...
She kicked, growled, swung & snarled her jagged little face at mine.
'What are you doing?'
Spiddle was flying through the air...like her hair and her feet...but no real words.
I wasn't scared...I was shocked.
I could have kicked back.
I could have yelled.
Instead I waited...which seemed to do nothing but further entice this rabid kid.
Sometimes we pick our battles and sometimes they pick us.
Sometimes we just gotta let go.
So I simply let go of those bars.
Feet safely in the sand I looked up & could see her flailing in joy that she had won her little war.
I surveyed my surrounding.
A war zone...an unkempt zoo...a keeping ground for rabid beasts.
I walked out the same way I walked in, less Kimbies hand.
On the walk home, I felt my hair sashaying across my shoulders & began to feel the magic again.
Standing at the stop light, waiting for the light change, I noticed my shadow had grown shorter.
I didn't go home...nope, now on this first day of education.
Instead I went to the Big Old Oak Tree.
I climbed up into it and made my way to the branch that laid a canapy over our brick road...
I laid there all day, soaking up my lessons of the day...
Sometimes we pick our battles & sometimes they pick us.

27 comments:

Orhan Kahn said...

I do hope this is a battle you can win, unlike your game of chicken on the monkey bars.

Love the picture of you in the oak tree. Wish we had trees like that here. No fair.

Deeis4Dana said...

love this one..love your tree...
this story hits home...i never ever wanted to join that impersonal world; there was never any magic in it for me either.

WILSONART said...

You may have given up the battle,,,,but I think you won the war!

LOVE that tree photo,,,ain't God good?!!

What a memory jogging post, thanks, Skinny!

karma lennon said...

Wow. Weird. That little girl sounds scary! How've you been, hun? :)

skinnylittleblonde said...

Orhan...lol, you little keeper of my secret secrets ;) of course I can, I am & I will. Just like the little devil girl on the monkey bars...I just saved it for another day.

Dee...isn't it weird how the simplest(shadows & ponytails) of things can feel so natural, so normal, so right & so magical and then things that are apparently natural & normal (ie., kids crying, kicking & screaming) can feel so unnatural & just wrong. Lol, I know that had you been with me that day...you woulda walked right on with me.

Wilson...perspective is everything. I didn't really understand the battle of the monkey bars...there was nothing worth fighting for me there, so there was nothing really lost. That tree is awesome...too big to fit inside a camera's range. The trunk must have been as wide as a sedan is long. The branch I was on was just one of many easily accessible... Mother Nature is not only to be respected, but adored!

Karma...lol, who knows what that little girl really looked like...In my mind's eye, she had razor teeth, a jagged smile, a foaming mouth & a werewolf would have been more welcome in my world. ;)

singleton said...

Ha! Spit and Grace and Love! That's you my sisterchild!

And that ole tree....God love her....Dangled there many a time.....
Dad clunking underfoot, rolling over the bricks in the ole blue caddy.....
Acorns plunking on his vinyl rooftop!

ILYSVVM!

david mcmahon said...

So many lessons - for us as well as for you.

linalani said...

a beautiful story:)

Mel said...

Oh what an awesome tree!

And what a rude awakening on a first day.

I Dream of Jeannie hair....yup, magical!

*hugs*

Deeis4Dana said...

you KNOW it!!

Shimmerrings said...

This story reminds me of the time this bully of a little red haired girl hauled off and slapped me hard on the face. I, like you, was shocked. I wasn't used to this sort of violent behaviour. I did nothing but stand there. I didn't even tell on her. Funny, reflecting back, we can see how first experiences dictated the course of things that we are set to learn. It's amazing how we either fail that test or pass... and how very long it seems we sometimes take to catch on. Looks like you figured out fight or flight early on. It wasn't worth the fight, you left her in the dust, and she still didn't figure out that you'd won.

Now that's the kinda tree I'm talking about! The ones that you can just sink into, become a part of!

CrazyCath said...

Excellent post. Lots of little lessons in there. So much to learn in the "playground". Like what's worth fighting for and what isn't.

Well articulated. Thank you.

I came over from David's btw

hoppy said...

i know those big branches wish times were like when we were kids and things didn't have to be so complicated

tony said...

Hello! Just Came By You Via Sean.Hey Mighty Fine Blog!
Regards
Tony.

skinnylittleblonde said...

Singleton....ILY2!! My eyes are all puffy & my hands are swollen from staying up wayyyyyy to late, lol, and now I must scurry for work. But sister, you got me going last night...I was on a roll!

David..."Everything I needed to know in life I learned in kindergarten"... may not be completely true, but certainly our core has a good strong definition to it. Lol...I also learned some things we can walk away from, but we gotta go back on others (lol, as in attending school)

linalani! ... Hi! Nice to see you! You with all your sisters can probably relate closely to the 'Hold My Hand' part.

Mel...Lol, isn't that tree amazing?! I wish I had a pic of the whole thing. It took up, I would say, about 3/4 of an acre if not a bit more. That was just one branch among many. On another note, sometimes when I take a roadtrip I pull my hair up in two high on the side ponytails...it makes me feel like a free spirit (even though I know I must look like a whacked out old lady or a child to passer-bys;)

skinnylittleblonde said...

Dee...Lol, yes & I know I have seen you pulling the ponytail trick a time or two as well ;) Forever Young!

Shimmerings...Gosh, kids can be so very cruel, but I guess they are preparing us for adulthood. You know, as a kid I was right in between two boys, so I was accustomed to scrapping every now and again...I just wasn't accustomed to the unvalidated scrap. Lol. Yep, in kindergarten I learned some folks are just mean & whacked & that it's best to just avoid those types. Hahaha(is that mean of me?)
Oh & that tree? Heaven on earth...like being held in Mother Natures hand. Moments like that remind me that I do belong here on Earth & that there's more to life than traffic jams & bill collectors.

CrazyCathy... Thanks for coming by. I apologize that I haven't been galavanting thru the blogger world in the past couple days... I need a tree to climb to remind me once again about work, commutes & bills ;) Getting caught up in life requirements I find myself saying 'Skinny what are you doing' and still answering 'I don't know' Lol!

skinnylittleblonde said...

Hoppy...Yep, you know those branches too. You took the pic for me! I don't know about you,lol, but life was just as complicated as a kid for me. Maybe even more so, as I have learned so much growing up. Perspective is everything ;)

Tony...Thank you. Ahhh, the circles we weave ;)May they remain unbroken and ever-growing ... forming a chain of peace & love ;)

skinnylittleblonde said...

Note to anyone who is curious...lol, busting through a number of various changes in my own little world again or still or what-have-you...I apologize for not getting out & bopping into all the blogs that I would like to. It would be nice if we had 30 hour days. Hit or miss, i'll catch you sometime in the wee hours...P&L

SpongyBones said...

Skinny, you know that I love these stories of yours. I mean I don't even have to close my eyes and I can see, smell and hear everything,

must say this was pretty good vivid thought ...

My hair was pulled up in an "I dream of Jeanie" pony-tail. The way it swished left and right, through the air, kissing each shoulder with every step I took made me feel... a little magical.

okay down boy and reminder to self ... never read 8 Mile Love Graffiti blog and yours one after another!

Hope you have a good weekend! I will drink a beer for you tonight, no wait maybe two!

SpongyBones said...

Skinny, you know that I love these stories of yours. I mean I don't even have to close my eyes and I can see, smell and hear everything,

must say this was pretty good vivid thought ...

My hair was pulled up in an "I dream of Jeanie" pony-tail. The way it swished left and right, through the air, kissing each shoulder with every step I took made me feel... a little magical.

okay down boy and reminder to self ... never read 8 Mile Love Graffiti blog and yours one after another!

Hope you have a good weekend! I will drink a beer for you tonight, no wait maybe two!

kj said...

what an awesome piece of writing. i can see that little girl as clearly as i can see you now. it seems like it's been a long time since i've read one of your stories, and i am so glad tonight i'll carry this one with me.

skinnylittleblonde said...

Spongy...Hahahaha, thanks! Someone should certainly enjoy FOUR beers for me!

kj...I know how it is as far as getting out and reading. I have failed miserably so in doing that lately... so many pigs in the pokie to tend to. lol. But it's good to see you around & last night I thought of you & your heavenly yard, so I thought it was rather ironic that you had been here...connected, I say! peace & love to you, beautiful soul!

Tai said...

How well I remember the terror of this day, and the solace of my own version of the Big Old Oak Tree--we called it Kite Hill. (Love your striped feet.)

skinnylittleblonde said...

Tai...Lol, only you noticed those striped soles! Stripes give you more grip when climbing rocks and trees and such ;) I think I remember a pic of your hill...weren't there stone steps that took you there? Or am I confused?

Tai said...

Exactly! A flight of stone steps led to the summit of the hill. But I usually scrambled through the brush anyway. If only I'd worn my stripes.

John-Michael said...

"I laid there all day, soaking up my lessons of the day"

I love the generosity of Life in giving you that tree. And the grace and wisdom of the "inner You" to encourage you to take in ... for eternity ... the 'lessons' that were recorded in your Soul that day.

I love the power of your Spirit in guiding you to still-fresh recall of those lessons gleaned ... and your caring and artful presentation of those recollections.

You are so totally lovable ... and enjoyable!

eric1313 said...

Soak up those lessons and never stop learning. It's like an early first death to lose one zest for experience.

Glad to poke my head above water and shout out. I'm at my old college catching up with you and Sing--I'm sorry to be out of the loop on you both like this. Porch and patio parties are at the apex of thought all the time for me. We need to party some time soon.

So keep lying in the tall grass with your eyes watching god all around you and tell us of the mysteries uncovered by the answers.

I'll catch you all soon, I hope. One of these nights at ten on the butterfly. We'll throw down like the old days.

P&L