shovel: 35 minutes
2 inches of heavy, sloppy snow

Yuck! Woke up this morning, walked downstairs, opened the blinds. Hello huge tree branch sprawled across the side yard! Sometime during the night as it snowed a branch from my neighbor’s tree fell. It starts in their yard and ends by the edge of my house. Luckily, no damage. I wonder how long it will be before it’s removed? Later, after coffee, I went outside to shovel. I had been warned by one of my favorite Facebook friends that it was “heart-attack-on-a-shovel snow,” so I was slightly prepared. So heavy and wet and difficult to move! I did a lot of deep knee bends, trying to lift with my legs instead of my back.

I thought about running outside, but decided it was too sloppy, and possibly slippery. So, down to the basement for me.

bike: warm-up
run: 2.25 miles
outside: snow

During my brief bike ride, I recited ED’s “I measure every Grief I meet.” I’ve memorized the entire thing now. Well, mostly. I don’t quite own the words, stumbling over a few still. I love memorizing ED poems because it gives me a chance to study the poems, especially the word choice. As I struggle to remember the words, or remembered them wrong, I realize what interesting/strange/delightful choices ED makes. Today’s favorites:

And though I may not guess the kind —
Correctly — yet to me
A piercing Comfort it affords
When passing Calvary —

To note the fashions — of the Cross —
and how they’re mostly worn —
Fascinated still to presume
That Some — are like my Own —

During the run I listened to the latest “Nobody Asked Us with Des and Kara.” They were talking about recent races, super shoes, fast times, and the future of track. Reflecting on how world records keep being broken Kara asked Des: “What do you think would happen if they took away the clock? Would the race still be exciting?” Des thought it could be, while my mind started wandering. First thinking about how I’ve been trying to forget the clock/watch and not care about pace — mostly, I’ve been successful. Second thinking about Clocks and how I’ve collected some lines (from poems and essays) about the clock, or what Mary Oliver calls it:

The clock! That twelve-figured moon skull, that white spider belly! How serenely the hands move with their filigree pointers, and how steadily! Twelve hours, and twelve hours, and begin again! Eat, speak, sleep, cross a street, wash a dish! The clock is still ticking. All its vistas are just so broad–are regular. (Notice that word.) Every day, twelve little bins in which to order disorderly life, and even more disorderly though. The town’s clock cries out, and the face on every wrist hums or shines; the world keeps pace with itself. Another day is passing, a regular and ordinary day. (Notice that word also.)

Upstream/ Mary Oliver

So many places to go with the idea of the Clock. Mary Oliver’s ordinary versus extraordinary time. Routines, habits, delight in the daily, repeated events. The Moment between time and its tight ticks, or right before something has happened, or when time (and sense) are disrupted. The time of the day dream. Outside of time and its relentless march forward, towards Death, motivated by progress. Losing time, syncing up with time. What other ways to we have for measuring meaning that don’t involve time passing?