The snow came, finally, and a good snow for rounding in the palms and flinging at teen-aged children and husband, though really there wasn’t enough of it for this. Then Jim came over with his two exchange students, German and Chinese boys who like to bring over their laptops and access our high speed internet since they now live in a dial-up desert. Jim had hardly stepped from his car when I proceeded to pummel him with snowballs too because I love him dearly and I promised him last night that if he came over I would attack him with snowballs. Then everyone joined in, and all the snow and the kids and the whir of snowballs was good medicine. Mischief medicine, I call it, and it’s a cordial I’d like to sip from daily. Could I really consider myself full and alive if I didn’t let that wild girl in me have her play?
Later I took my five-year-old son out for a community dinner to benefit a local private school. The meal was Japanese, and his preschool teacher, also Japanese, was the chef. He has developed a close bond with her, learned Japanese words, and showed some interest in eating Japanese food, though really he was just hoping that she would sit down and eat with us. But the tables were filled, and she was too busy. The meal she prepared was excellent, a brisk and delightful change of pace for the tastebuds. But he didn’t like it, and was full with mischief since he was empty of food. Leaving the building we walked into the pool of light that surrounded the school’s main building. Beyond that edge of light stood trees tall and shadows deep. He runs to grab my hand, and asks about wolves.
There are no wolves here, I tell him, and we climb into the car. There are no wolves here, but there is something about the sky on this night that, for the short drive home, resonates with that part of my heart that thrills when a recorded wolf howl flies off the radio waves. The sky is thick with cloud, but the mountains hold them on the Western slopes, while to the East the Moon blinks through holes in this quilt of cloud. But it’s the size of the clouds that entices me–they are enormous, larger than the mountains themselves, rounded, broad-shouldered, giants of the cloud kingdom. What is it in their silent language, their massive Presence, that calls to me? The eye of Moon flashes. The seed of everything surrounding me pulses. There’s a magic I dont’ know, a depth of existence that I sometimes stumble upon, like a child dressed in treasure. What to do with it but play?