Friday, May 8, 2009

El Paso 28.5.03: Red Wheelbarrows and Sophia

Joseph Wechsberg (Prague: The Mystical City [NY: Macmillan, 1971]) speaks of “the earthless, weeping dream light of the early day”—a line he implies is from a poem of Franz Werfel’s (p. 199). The line moved me almost to tears when I read it.

I think of it again as day gives way to night, we sitting in the Dallas airport waiting for our flight to El Paso. That vast Texas sky that doesn’t so much change color in the interstitial moments as fade, imperceptibly but decisively from light to dark, blue to black.

The dying sun peers like a surprise through windows of the terminal across the way. A mystical moment—one that happens morning and night, every day, and we so seldom ponder it. . . .

To meet Sophia places a demand on one’s life. It’s a sign one’s “ready,” has made it up the undulating stairway (a version of which we saw—a moving sculpture—on the SMU campus when Jeff graduated).

But such an end is a beginning (or such a beginning is an end). It hit me as I walked, stark Western sunlight striping a bright red trashcan like William Carlos Williams’s red wheelbarrow: I have stories to tell. Now may be the time to begin telling them. That would necessitate a life change.

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