Stark Similes

I imagine that we are spun together in utero like a sweater or a nice wool beanie. Or maybe our muscles grow across bone like ivy climbing over lattice work. Our tissues become interwoven.  We become fully connected and useful. We are wonderfully made.

It is a miracle the way children make use of muscle.  They swing over school-yard playgrounds like tiny miracles. In fact, I watched it this Friday night. Arden sat in the green plastic seat, hands pulling against the taught chains, legs pumping to achieve a sort of controlled flight. Long blond hair flew forward and covered her face as she swung back, concealing a smile fit for a Christmas morning. These are the early tastes of freedom, the ones we’ll try to remember in our fifties.

We are really and truly wonderfully made.

I have also seen the tissues fail.  I've watched as children slip through their parents’ fingers like helium balloons held by weak-fisted toddlers. The joy of life moves beyond reach, toward heaven, or Val Halla, or some other-worldly place of rest. And though we all join hands and sing simply that peace like a river attendeth our ways, we wonder at the fragility of it all. Is it fair for an infant’s heart to fail? Is it just for an eighteen year-old to take mortal shrapnel from an IED.

Yes. We are fearfully made, too.

*For my friends, all of you who know what this post means. You folks inspire me.

**For those of you who may worry that this post is too macabre, joy comes in the morning.  Really. I promise.