Saturday, December 31, 2011

And the Cantilevered Inference Shall Hold the Day

And the Cantilevered Inference Shall Hold the Day

by Michael Blumenthal

Things are not as they seem: the innuendo of everything makes
itself felt and trembles towards meanings we never intuited
or dreamed. Take, for example, how the warbler, perched on a

mere branch, can kidnap the day from its tediums and send us
heavenwards, or how, held up by nothing we really see, our
spirits soar and then, in a mysterious series of twists and turns,

come to a safe landing in a field, encircled by greenery. Nothing
I can say to you here can possibly convince you that a man
as unreliable as I have been can smuggle in truths between tercets

and quatrains on scraps of paper, but the world as we know
is full of surprises, and the likelihood that here, in the shape
of this very bird, redemption awaits us should not be dismissed

so easily. Each year, days swivel and diminish along their inscrutable
axes, then lengthen again until we are bathed in light we were not
prepared for. Last night, lying in bed with nothing to hold onto

but myself, I gazed at the emptiness beside me and saw there, in the
shape of absence, something so sweet and deliberate I called it darling.
No one who encrusticates (I made that up!) his silliness in a bowl,

waiting for sanctity, can ever know how lovely playfulness can be,
and, that said, let me wish you a Merry One (or Chanukah if you
prefer), and may whatever holds you up stay forever beneath you,

and may the robin find many a worm, and our cruelties abate,
and may you be well and happy and full of mischief as I am,
and may all your nothings, too, hold something up and sing.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Black Mountain Wine House

I know. I know, I know, I know. I've been away from this space for a million years (since Halloween? Eeks.) But life has been a little nutty recently and I didn't feel like writing. That's just the truth. That's real life. Life got weird and then it got bad and then better, and now it's just plain BETTER and I'm back and I'm fine and let's talk about wine!

This Christmas, instead exchanging gifts, two of my girlfriends and I treated ourselves to dinner and told each other how appreciative we are of each other. It started out as a joke, (it sounds so lame and corny, doesn't it?) but in the end it was really lovely. How often do you do that with your girlfriends? Just look them straight in the eye and say 'I really like this about you'? Not enough! Maybe never! It's a little awkward! But-- as a wise woman once said--- I like corny. I've been looking for corny. My friends said that they appreciate me for the good advice that I give. Isn't that the nicest!? Thanks, girls. I love my gift.

This little verbal gift exchange took place at one of my favorite spots in New York the world-- Black Mountain Wine House in Carroll Gardens. I wasn't initially going to share the name of this little gem in fear of it becoming garishly crowded and famous, but another bloggie already gave it up today, and, well, sharing is the right thing to do. We sat in the back corner, right next to the most perfect little fireplace, sipped champagne, and then Pinot Noir, munched on cheese and meatballs, and just plain enjoyed ourselves.

In addition to our appreciation conversation we talked about 2011 in it's entirety. We went month-by-month and rehashed the craziness of being women in our 20s figuring it all out. Katie lived in Germany for the first six months of 2011. Alison got to spend an entire week in Miami with her sweet mother. I traveled to Florida three times this year (what?!)--- the first time alone, the second time with a boy, and the third time in panic. Life is weird!

And now it's suddenly Christmastime and I've never been more ready to celebrate. Cheers, my lovelies. Here's to us.