LEARNING AS I GO

stratos

On October 14, 2012, Felix Baumgartner climbed 128,100 feet into to the inky stratosphere. He ascended alone, carried by a silvery helium balloon made from ultra thin, high-performance polyurethane film (only 0.0008 inches thick). Once his craft leveled out at the limits of the sky, he jumped out, setting new records and inspiring the world.

stratos

ephemeral iridescence
ascending incandescence
the balloon dug up
layer after layer
of our cerulean corona

sedimentary winds reeled
metamorphic clouds revealed
our very atmosphere,
excavated
and unearthed
to porous, black bedrock,
the cavernous deep.

By Hollie
November 2012

lucky seven

Seven months ago you emerged, pink, warm and perfect in the cold, stainless room. Chris held my face and hands, then tucked your tiny body in his shirt just like we’d hoped he could. In the next room, I hugged you softly and looked down, my loud turquoise nails and brass whale necklace reminding me how transient this moment, this collection of moments would be—my mind racing, even then, to my necklace seeping into my nightstand drawer and my polish chipping away as you would grow and grow, ceaselessly, relentlessly—already, under my steady gaze.

I held your hand in the car ride home, cradled you on the suede forest couch, smiled at your tiny mouth on my skin and our four months ahead. I loved your tired baby cries just as much as your smiles, reveled in my exhaustion as much as my joy, because I knew your perfection in each moment was unique and passing.

I took you on warm fall walks, snapping pictures of you in your buggy under the turning leaves. I slept with you on the couch, waking every 3 hours to the minute to feed you and worry about you in your sleep.

One special day, you smiled for the first time. Then, you scooched. Rolled. Laughed. Squealed. More recently, you cooed and made the “mmm” sound as we gave you a taste of banana. Our journey together is already a snowball, lithe and airy, tumbling down a steep hill, one moment piling onto the next onto the next. My love and Chris’ love and our love for you and each other are melting together, crystallizing into a sparkling sphere of light and being and blood and warm skin and touch.

At seven months, you are curious and messy and incandescent. I still wake every 3 hours to the minute to worry about you in your sleep. Every morning, you emerge, pink, warm and perfect just like you did in your very first hour, and I go to heaven for a few minutes when I bring you into our bed and I lay sandwiched between you and Chris. A circuit. Complete.

elm

After a two-year hiatus, Chris and I have finally reinstated marriage night: an evening each week we devote exclusively to each other and a creative activity. This week, we wrote poems on elm, Emerson’s initials. Here’s Chris’ take—I thought it was absolutely perfect and beautiful.

by Christopher Morgan
October, 2012
(for Emerson Louise Morgan, elm)

IMG_1161

becoming

Tiny traveler, tomorrow marks the landmark 40th week you’ve been a part of me. I can’t imagine what the next days or weeks have in store as we experience our own, private big bang—energy, matter, and time combusting into being, an explosion of light in a void we didn’t know was there. Right now, your birth looms like a monumental thing, a concrete beginning, though I know it’s just one small part of our own becomings. I’m a natural observer, I live in retrospect, at a distance from most of my own experiences.  I want us to know a natural birth because I simply like the idea of being fully immersed in the moment, the physical demands making it absolutely impossible to separate  thoughts, emotions, my very self from this event.

I crave to be one with you and my own body and feel the rending of our souls. Intensity like the violent splitting of an atom, bound by the invisible Strong Force. The live point of intersection between body and mind.

I’ve often imagined myself in a spacecraft. Tightly buckled in, letting go, feeling the hot fires violently expel us from the safe, blue earth, seeing the glowing horizon for the first time. My body is kindling that fire right now, preparing to deliver us out of own worlds.

Into each others’ arms.

We don’t know if the big bang was a decisive moment of separation—sparking an eternal pushing away, a distancing of matter and energy from its own self. Or, if this will crest and the waves of glittering space will one day crash down upon one another in a small, sacred pool of darkness and light, mind and body. I hope you and I will come apart only to come back together at the end of the road. At this juncture, I hope you will jump into me as I hold Chris’ hand and we jump back into the bodies of our own mothers, nesting generation after generation like Russian dolls on the windowsill of another world.

you

In just a few short weeks, we’ll finally meet face to face. I will be more than a voice and cradle to you; you will be more than an idea in my mind, a traveler in my body.

Once you’re here, this time—Chris and my early married life—will fade and blur into the exuberant color and joy you will bring us. I marvel at the thought of your perfect body, soft skin, eyes, bones—your cries and sighs, soft breaths and laughs.

While I wait for you, I want to share the slow beauty of this time. Chris and my evening walks around the neighborhood. Scrambled eggs and toast in bed on our white dishes with green vines. Emmie’s soft fur vibrating on Chris’ chest as she waits patiently to lick a plate or bowl. The many hands we’ve placed above you, hoping for you to kick or move. Dinners out, a trip to France, weekends in Austin, lazy evenings at the pool. Beautiful showers thrown by friends and family to celebrate our new journey, together. The music Chris improvises on the piano just for us.

Soon, you will be a part of these moments, of every moment. We can’t wait to share our happiness, our love of creativity, our appreciation of nature, of math, of science, our endless search for new ways of thinking and seeing the world. Right now, you are as miraculous to us as you will ever be—perfect in each instant we’re lucky enough to have you.

today

How beautiful it was then, through that void, to draw lines and parabolas, pick out the precise point, the intersection between space and time when the event would spring forth, undeniable in the prominence of its glow.
Italo Calvino on the time of radiant clarity in cosmic prehistory.
Found in Envisioning Information by Edward R. Tufte

new babies :)

lord byron

shelley

what is

But there is always the sun when the sun shines and the night when the night falls. There’s always grief when grief afflicts us and dreams when dreams cradle us. There is always what there is and never what there should be, not because it’s better or worse, but because it’s other.
Pessoa

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
Emerson

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