Thursday, September 26, 2019
Best and Brightest
It really was the most beautiful day to go to the beach — temperature at 86° a luxurious warm, no wind and nary a trace of fog. The sun so brilliant, it shattered all records of illuminated grandeur.
A visit with Rebecca Didomenico is always to the brim with inspiration. We walked the walk and talked the talk about art and imagination and how to best represent.
In the deep of night I turned to her gift of her latest book Flying Inside Paper, 60 poems and images, published on the occasion of her 60th birthday to celebrate her 60 years of creative life. And wouldn’t ya know, as it happened, the pages fell open to the most moving of reflections about her mother Ann Stephens who I had the great good fortune to befriend for some 30 years.
Noticing is The Only Witness of Memory Left
Did anyone notice the moon?
It’s glorious, she said, with more than enough light
pouring out of her eyes.
Even though, lately
her eyes are devoid of anything
not to mention glorious.
Now she sits at the table,
not eating, not making connections
to the words coming out of our mouths.
Every once in a while,
she spells a random word out loud,
as if to make it belong to the conversation in her mind.
And I know how she feels:
the words fall short of their meanings
And how they seem to be bumper cars
colliding in the cover of night.
And I think about how my husband used to say,
If I hear one more time
how that plum tree is the most beautiful tree in the world
Or this restaurant is the best one she’s ever eaten at,
I will scream.
And I say, think about the alternative;
sitting there for eternity with a bitter old woman
who can’t hold the splendor in anything.
And because, sometimes
my husband has an uncharacteristic ability
to surprise you with his talent for learning,
He turns to her,
The half of his face next to mine in darkness,
and says, I notice, dear,
What would we be without her!
(meaning, of course, my mother
and the moon simultaneously),
and our Alleluia, Glory be to God!
And to all of us here, still able to witness,
I whisper inside.