right now, thoughts of what i want hover around my neck, buzzing with nervousness, like bees hitting a glass window, trying to come inside. can i do it, can i do it, will there be time and space? will a gracious universe say yes, this is where you should be.

right now the heat lingers and the humidity sits, though this isn’t her home and she is a most unwelcome guest. moisture lays on the cheekbones of all of us and my hair curls though i will it not to. but on the heels of a perfect and deeply sweet summer, what’s a hair out of place, a bit of wet heat, a flush of warmth before a cool and forgiving evening? where the boys in the neighborhood are super-heroes, and the ice cream truck rolls by, and the shadows stretch crazily from one side of the street to the other. gardenias bloomed late this year and the crepe myrtle awarded us with a second blanket of magenta blossoms, falling now with the knowledge of autumn ahead, making a carpet of pink to surround the yard.

right now golden strands of sun-baked hair cascade around the shoulders of one whose long gets longer and whose lines are barely those of a girl. smells and hormones and inquisitions seem to pour from her in equal measure, and there in the midst of the barrage are glimpses of a person so unique and intelligent and able that my breath is thrown across the room from my body and i can only look and look some more, so dazzled and in awe am i. the work of it is so intense and relentless and different i think from the daughters of others – could it be there is indeed truth in that work, that our intuition and love may be leading us to balance? how i yearn for that to be just that, just that very that.

right now there is peace where discord had been. my sadness that i had lost a lovely someone to a bruising miscommunication. but upper roads were chosen and there is forgiveness and in its calm i breathe and reflect on how lucky i am. such beauty and soulfulness and humor and wit, then and there and here and now, in all the beauties who grace my life. i hope she never leaves, this benevolent provider of luck, whomever she is and whatever i did to earn her and the many gifts she brings me.

right now there is the big one and the little one, the wet-nosed, tail-beating, love-giving pups who sprinkle our every day with their charm and sweetness. big is at the end and little is just starting, and me, in the middle of them and with my girl close by, aspiring to great bravery as i try to navigate this path of life and death. my fear of what is soon to come is bigger than the empire state building, and so i try not to project, and love-bomb my angel girl daily, all while an effervescent, seven pound bundle of silky fur is bouncing on our heads or velcro-ing herself to our laps, chests or necks. twelve years this month of my warm-eyed, tiger-striped girl, and my gratitude for knowing and protecting her has been a gift every moment of this journey we’ve been on together. loving my lucy as she has entrusted herself to me is one of the most tender experiences i’ve been through.

right now there is the one who has been. been for so long that the not being comes with great surprise and delicious letting go. to what was, what should have been, what couldn’t be, what didn’t work, what needed to be. he who was is strong, and truer than ever to himself, and to my long girl. so i scoop it all up, and i hold it in my arms, and i stand on top of the biggest hill i can draw in my mind, and i release all that was like a gorgeous collection of butterflies. they fly away, all swirling colors and delicate wing-beats and they move on to where they need to be, without me hanging on to their tiny little legs, begging them to stay. for they are not mine anymore, and there is no room for them to reside here, in my simple life that is all about the same as before, and yet not the same at all.

finally, right now, is the softness of freckled shoulders, moving through a blue-water summer pool to get to me. the quiet movement of ankles around ankles as the dance gets long and languid and the negative spaces – those that make you feel safe – grow smaller in size and eventually become positive. breath is warm and tinged with sweetness, the sweetness of tiny delicacies and heartfelt offerings. lips are wine-red or chocolate-laced, and the air around holds a dozen scents of a dozen moments, taking place as a sort of warm-up dance to a greater waltz. there is some history, though in ways circumstantial, and in the recipe too are elements of longing, and integrity, and time, and place. there are interlaced fingers, and empty bottles, and time for conversation. mostly though, there is now. not as it was, or as it will be. it’s just now, in all its immediacy, and gorgeous sets of moments. i drink each one in, like a rare tea in a gold-gilded, ancient porcelain cup.