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April 15, 2024

Hamtramck Walk 13

By Amy Probst

SPRINGtime is COMing!
This GOOSE is LOSing FAT!
PLEASE see the BRIGHTer side
Of HAMtramCK!

A funk-encrusted fog has lifted from its festering, blinding place inside my mind, and I feel NORMAL and light and possible after some long weeks spent clawing through every moment like a drunk turtle scaling a craggy mountain face at midnight against hurricane winds. I have somehow landed on the sunny side of the street, and over here, trying to figure out the whys and wherefores of the doom that is depression holds no interest; over here, there are better things to do! Like walk the same neighborhood that for weeks has been a horror show of sights---suffering animals, angry graffiti, crying children and littered alleys---and marvel at the simple goodness of life, whistle while I walk on healthy legs, breathing in pastry-laden air, and noticing. Noticing everything; noticing Hamtramck.

It is all about "me" as a lens, life is. Appalled as I am by my unwavering and limitless ability to focus on my own navel, it nevertheless remains true to me that therein lies the fulcrum upon which life as I know it is perceived; slipping too far off center, and a perhaps disproportionate, but nevertheless valid, percentage of my perception is filled with the darker things, life's joys fading almost imperceptibly into the background. But back on center, the balance leaves room for other things to take full screen on occasion. Like this Hamtramck sunflower, and its attendant bee.

Yes, a bee; did you notice it there? The devil may be in the details for some, but man, so is the good stuff. When my fulcrum slides down to funktown my movie screen of life tends toward sweeping gulps that run together like mud, I miss these tiny wonders. Last week, down this same alley, I saw just one flat image of old houses, gray sky, crooked fences; this sunflower and his friends were a splot of mustard in the periphery, nothing more. Today I can focus, blurry edges are taking shape, and that is how I found the bee. Smiling at this happy flower was enough, but lo' and behold, I find this tiny living creature, going about her day. We are both alive, she and me, little bee and Hamtramckee.

Happy dogs and smiling old ladies and laughing kids---they are all in Hamtramck today! Probably were here all along, but my radar was on another setting. I hope this one lasts a while. I am going to do my part toward that end this time; it's worth the effort. And that why we see our author heading off, jogging---yes, jogging!---into the sunset, planning a salad for dinner and vowing to switch the talk radio to classical music. Buzzing around town, enjoying the little things and not minding being one of them.

Article © Amy Probst. All rights reserved.
Published on 2004-03-20
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