Saturday, February 14, 2009

Pudgy Graces

I had hurried from the crowded, humid reptilian exhibit with its sticky heat and noisy bird calls.

I wanted to escape that warmth and let my mind sail over blue ripples in the water and sit at the feet of the manatee.

I stood at the back as the same crowd surged around the thick glass that guarded the elegant beasts, but soon found an opening and rushed forward.

I sat
like a child
my skirt curled under me,
and pressed my face against the glass,
like a child.

And there I prayed that she would glide by me, so I could gaze upon her.

And she did.
Her body descended from the rays of light in the water,
and she showed off her curves and ripples of fat as she danced past me.

And then her face met mine. Nose to nose, through glass. Deep to deep, through glass.

Her eyes penetrated mine, and she shared a joke, a poem, a lesson, a metaphor, a dream, a belief.
And in them was more truth than in a million sermons.

I sat stunned and she turned and touched her fin to my hand, and then swam off, large and graceful in her sleeve of silvery blue flesh.

I want to wear her image around my neck,
as a reminder of that unspoken sermon
to be content, to be love, and to show off your curves in glorious twirls.