Rooster in the Road

Sometimes I wonder if being sane is worth all the trouble.

The psycho-spiritual work is endless, flashes of insight dim under the daily grind, and the load just gets heavy.  I catch myself schlepping along the sidewalk like an old woman, hobbling with one pain or another, dragging two or three bags everywhere I go.  Sometimes I catch my reflection in the big mirrors at the Y, and the pinched, scowling face shocks me.

Holy crap.  Where is the Joy?

Today I drove to the post office, deposited at letter (another attempt to qualify for Medicaid), and when I stopped at the intersection, a red rooster looked at me from the middle of the road.  What? I watched him cluck-cluck his way zig-zaggy across the street, and then burst out laughing.

Joy is a Rooster in the Road.  It drops off a Cosmic truck or escapes from a Holy coop to land—splat—a few inches from your tires.  All you have to do is turn toward it and say hello.

Last night I watched some hilarious videos on UTube that made me laugh so hard I lost urine (as we women of a Certain Age like to say).  It had been awhile since I laughed that hard.  My face ached, my belly hurt, I whooped and hee-hawed until my cats ran for cover.  And I had just stumbled over those videos.  A rooster in the road.

Some mornings, when I go to Haven (my coffee shop), my friend Joyce will treat me to coffee, or give me a muffin she thinks is too stale to sell, or ask me to try a new kind of truffle.  Her generosity makes me feel rich and loved.  Like speckled eggs, her gifts are joy and hold the potential for more as their warmth stirs a shift in me.

When I lived with my friends, Tom and Cheryl, I also lived with their dogs, Sage and Gracie.  If cats are a subtle pencil sketch, dogs are a slap of high gloss with a sloppy paintbrush.  I loved their largeness.  Now, nine months after moving out on my own, Gracie greets me like she can’t stand to live without me.  A fierce watchdog, she barks at kids walking on the other side of the street.  But, if she hears me, she starts whining while I’m still out on the porch.  And when I finally open the door to her, her black and white torpedo body wiggles uncontrollably.  Snorts and grunts and snufflings accompany the whining until I can love her thoroughly and apologize for being gone so long.  Her unabashed, unconditional high regard clucks like a chicken.

Marianne Williamson says, Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.

I get tunnel vision, Watching and Working every day.  I forget to look up and out, to place myself on the earth, to take a breath and relax into who I am now.  I forget how far I’ve come, how well I am and all the things I’m capable of.  But, then, a rooster crosses the road, and I remember.

Are you jealous of the ocean’s generosity?
Why would you refuse to give
this joy to anyone?
Fish don’t hold the sacred liquid in cups!
They swim the huge fluid freedom.— Rumi

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. karen
    Feb 25, 2011 @ 15:13:21

    great post.

    i can relate to needing to remember where the joy is sometimes, more often than i would care to admit. i know for a fact that i have it better in every way than most of the people on the planet; sometimes i need to remember i swim in the huge fluid freedom.


    with you on the journey,


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