16 degrees / feels like 6
Brrr. I wore almost all the layers today: 2 pairs of running tights, long-sleeved shirt, black 3/4s pullover, pink jacket, black vest, 2 pairs of gloves, winter cap, buff, 1 pair of socks. The only thing missing: hand warmers, mittens, and an extra pair of socks. Like most cold days, it looked (and sounded) warm. Bright sun and singing birds. Because of the cold, it wasn’t that crowded on the trails. I think I only saw 1 bike, some walkers. Was “morning-ed!” by Mr. Morning! and Santa Claus. Nice. Noticed several planes in the sky. With the clear blue and bright sun, they were white smudges, looking almost like the faint trace of the moon during the day. I saw them out of the corner of my eye, but they kept disappearing in my central vision.
The best thing I noticed today was the river. It was mostly open, but the banks were crusty again, and there were small chunks of ice everywhere. Slushy. Yesterday the wind was moving with the river, pulling it faster south. Today, the wind and water were at odds. The river was moving, but just barely, and away from the wind. Most of its movement was in the sparkling sun bouncing off the gentle ripples. Beautiful.
Saw my shadow off to the side, then in front. Heard my zipper pull clanging against my vest. I don’t remember smelling anything — no, that’s wrong. As I ran by Black’s Coffee, I smelled the fresh waffles.
a word to remember in the summer
petrichor (pe TRI cor): a pleasant smell that frequently accompanies the first rain after a long period of warm, dry weather. Found on a twitter thread about favorite words rarely heard.
Love this poem, and the idea of creating a list or lists with “More Of This, Please” as the title!
MORE OF THIS, PLEASE / EMILY SERNAKER
In grad school I had a writing teacher who’d completely cream my essays.
Cross-outs and tracked changes. He took me at my word
when I said I wanted to get better. But when he liked something,
he’d point to what was working: More of this please.
Did I mention he was British? This is important because lately,
whenever something is really working, I tend to think to myself,
in a British accent: More of this, please. A lunch date turned dinner date
with a dreamboat who is slightly embarrassed his eyes water in cold weather.
Him looking like he’s tearing up at Shake Shack. More of this, please.
A toddler turning got me at the park holding her hair tie, asking me
to fix her ponytail. Her grandmother nodding to go right ahead, my hands
collecting wisps of yellow. More of this, please. Any time my family is honest
about mental health, what my grandparents were up against. This.
Cough-drop wrappers that say, Bet on Yourself. Pop-up concerts in the city.
Stevie Wonder playing Songs in the Key of Life at 10 AM on a Monday,
hundreds of people stopping mid commute in button-ups and blazers
belting out every word to “Sir Duke” and “Isn’t She Lovely,” saying, “My boss
is just going to have to understand!” The subway tiles under Carnegie Hall
with names of performers who played there: Lena Horne, September 29,
1947. The Beatles, February 12, 1964. Dance classes with live drummers.
An editor saying, I’ll pass this on,” instead of, “I’ll pass on this.”
A stranger falling asleep on my shoulder for several stops. Staring at dates
in authors’ bios: Ruth Stone, 1915-2011. Larry Levis, 1946-1996.
Recommitting to living as much as I can. Realizing the dash between the year
you’re born and the year you die is smaller than your smaller fingernail.
It’s smaller than a strand of saffron in a bottle the size of a thimble
in the spice shop across the street.
This poem is in The Sun Magazine. I found all these wonderful quotations about water there: Sunbeams