Wednesday, April 10, 2013
In the midst of National Poetry Month, and I am finding poetry in the tiniest of details. The other day, Ha and I were in Buckhead, driving around, looking at estate homes just to look;these are homes that usually begin in terms of price-point, in the double-digit-millions... At one address, there was an "Estate Sale" (what wealthy folks call a yard-sale)and I urged Ha to stop, to "let me look at the books; they are always pushed to the side,forgotten...." So we stopped. Sure enough, I spotted a few hard-cover, "coffee-table" cookbooks like "The Beautiful Cookbook of France", scattered on various shelves, for just ten dollars (this cookbook retails for $50.00 or more)and "Cuisine of France". I gathered them, and placed them together, on a table, and decided to browse. When I returned just moments later, they'd been bought by someone else. Which upset me, because I'd intended to gift someone special who loves French food, who just took a class in preparing French food. But the loss caused me to look at another shelf--one I'd missed--which had only a few paperbacks, and an odd, teeny-tiny box.I opened the box to find two baby shoes.I held them (they fit in my palm)and discovered they were inscribed with the child's name, and date of birth, on the bottom of each shoe. It was like holding a life, aloft, holding these two tiny shoes. Where was this child now? Did the parents forget? Did they leave these here, because it was too painful to take them along? I noticed the shoes were tagged with a $5.00 price on them, which made me want to cry. A pair of shoes an infant once wore, now abandoned in this enormous house, a house filled with fabulous paintings and great cookbooks (and Oriental rugs, it should be noted, that most definitely are.not.for.sale.). A house with a ceiling-to-floor-view of the Olympic-sized pool behind the house. A house where people once drank, and ate, and hung paintings, and sang Happy Birthday, to at least this one child. I want to know this child. Where are you, Maggie, born in April, 1991? Poetry happens when people move. It happens when people forget. It happens, to children. Peace, kids.