SEEING BEAUTY IN THE COMMONPLACE
I am not very wealthy in things of
And on a dreary day when life looks
Wealthy beyond measure, so rich am
2. TOO MUCH STUFF?
"Your room's a
"mess," they say.
Does God see me as beautiful,
A tangle of rusty wire, lying in the
The wire has a careless, woven,
Glue it against a rustic board; tuck
small clay flowers
May God do the same with me, seeing
4. MY FRIENDS
Two friends perched on my closet
And I've thought so often, oh I
But the other day when much in a
I didn't plan to create some pets,
But God is still true faithful
5. CONVERSATION WITH LILY
It's been a long time since my childhood. But I still love to blow soap bubbles.
I described to Lily, a teenage girl, my pleasure in going out to the yard to blow bubbles. How beautifully those bubbles shone in the light. Some were all pink and blue. Others were green and yellow or purple. It all depended on which way the wind blew them, and the angle of the reflection of light.
As I watched the fragile soap bubbles ascending, I would just cry out, "Glory, glory!" Soap bubble time is, for me, a way of worshipping the Lord. And the bubbles represent my prayers.
"This one's for Lily, and this one for ____." I sent up my prayers of blessing as the soap bubbles went up into the air and descended, all colored and glowing.
replied, "You're the neatest person I know, if you can see all of
that in something as simple as soap bubbles."
thankful I am, that he not only shows himself in big, mighty things such
as the power of the ocean or the glowing rainbow in the sky, but can also
speak to me, if I choose to let him, through simple things -- yes even
6. REFLECTED/REFRACTED LIGHT
daytime, my bed often becomes a table on which to lay things temporarily.
Another miracle of
light occurs, sometimes, in the mornings, as I lay out my pills and
medications for the day. I'll put each batch in a cup: one for breakfast,
one for lunch, one for supper. But for now, there they lie
Let me enjoy such simple glories to the fullest. They are the miracles that light up a humdrum day. I may not be rich in worldly goods. But for a few moments on a few days, I am rich beyond all telling, counting and rejoicing in my little riches: flaming jewels of reflected/refracted light.
7. OF PUREST MARBLE
In September, our zucchini patch gave forth with more produce than our family could consume. Dad came to me, one day, and asked: "Is it all right to freeze zucchini?"
"Yes," I replied. "It has to be blanched (par-cooked) first, and sometimes it's kind of limp when it is thawed. But it's edible."
My dad, not being the cook of the house, heard my "yes, zucchini can be frozen". But he didn't have the same images come to mind: of extensive preparation. If I wondered why he didn't bring in the extra zucchini for mom or I to prepare for the freezer, I soon forgot the episode.
Later in the month, however, my sister came to visit. Sent to the freezer to get something to thaw for our dinner, she came back asking: "What are those two huge zucchini doing in the freezer?" Dad had stuck the whole zucchinis in the freezer without any preparations (or wrappings).
The inclination is to just toss out the frozen zucchini; the flesh will be worthless, soggy, when thawed. But food is food. If par-cooked zucchini can be salvaged, spiked up with enough other items to hide the limp texture and blah taste, why not the same for a fresh-frozen product?
So the two green rigidities continue to inhabit their frosty home, waiting to be put into a concoction for some meal.
November, one day when mom and dad aren't at home to observe a possible
failure, I experiment. Shush, whisk. The workshop band saw cuts the fat
end off the frozen squash as if it were -- well, not butter, but
immaterial matter. Shoosh, whish again. The butt is now two vertical
halves. Back into the freezer with the rest of the frozen stock. Wipe up
the soggy, wet mess on band saw table. Saw a couple of sticks of wood to
clean the ooze
I carry my
two parts triumphantly from the shop to the kitchen. Wooshing,
washing tap water rinses off the sawdust and wetted blackish grime left by
the bandsaw adventure. And hey-presto! I have the loveliest slabs of
purest translucent marble. Glossy and glassy and shining white. What a
delight to the eye. Any stone sculptor would be thrilled to be presented
with such marble perfection! (Except that this kind must be quickly
The peeling of the tough, leathery skin isn't easy. In fact, I almost give up and throw the whole rubbery mass away. But no, I am more determined than that. How long does one cook deep freezed zucchini? On my first try, I don't leave it in the steamer long enough. The flesh is flabby, but the underlying stringiness is too chewy. But the second try is the charm. I mix in canned tomatoes, a little Mexican salsa. And we have a dish of vegetables worthy of going on the table, after all.
there was food for the body, there was food to fill up the chinks of my
soul. For the part I will remember is not the success of what could have
been a forlorn vegetable -- but the look of those precious slabs of
purest, glassine, polished marble! How beautiful to the artist's eye!
copyright 1996-2004 by Marilee