Saturday, May 19, 2007

"Ah - Delicious."

“Mama,” Cassie said in a strangely calm, quiet voice for the boisterous girl she is. “Here’s the very first strawberry of the season. I just picked it from the strawberry patch.” Her reverent tone and sparkling brown eyes made me smile. The girl loves strawberries. She could have popped it into her mouth, no one ever to know, but here she was, offering to share it with me.

Thanking her, I nibbled a bit, and gave the rest to her. We shut our eyes, relishing the pleasure, as the flavor smeared over our taste buds, ripe-from-the-garden strawberry flavor bursting sweet and tangy, lingering, sliding down our throats. Delicate elixir of life!

Cassie’s berry reminded me of this, from Tom Crum:

In the Orient, there is a story of a samurai who is being chased by a bear. He literally runs off a cliff. As he’s falling, he grabs a branch.

He looks up and sees the bear leaning over the cliff, clawing at his head, missing only by inches. As he looks down to the ground below, only about fifteen feet, he sees a lion leaping up, missing his feet only by inches. As he looks at the branch he is clutching, he sees two groundhogs gnawing away at it. He watches as his lifeline disappears, bite by bite.

As he takes a deep, long breath, he notices, next to his branch, a clump of wild strawberries. In the midst of the clump is a great, red, juicy strawberry. With his one free hand, he reaches over, picks the strawberry, puts it in his mouth, chews it slowly and says, “Ah - delicious.”

With discouraging junk happening in recent yesterdays, and hard work looming in upcoming tomorrows, I am struggling to remember this adage, to take a deep breath and enjoy the quiet of this present, this weekend, this eye-of-the-storm, calm moment in time.

Easier it would be to worry, carry the ugliness of yesterday into the looming work of tomorrow, bypassing the glory of today.

The choice is mine.

Set down the aches of yesterday.

Savor the strawberry.

“Ah - delicious!”

Tomorrow will take care of itself.


deanna said...

Yum, beautiful berries.

Cherie, may your rest and the juicy gift's flavor carry over into this next week in a helpful way.

Cherie said...

Wow, Deanna, you must be reading my mind to know I just posted this, was in fact, still editing to get it juuuust right. :-)

Your wishes are eloquent and soothe my heart, almost as a strawberry soothes my tongue! :-)

Anonymous said...

Cherie, This story is one of my favorites, and as you know dificult for me to do, thanks for sharing.

Cherie said...

It's not easy for me, either, Tom, as you know. The fact that we try is the important thing, and we do try. Let's make every effort together to savor the strawberry today, okay? Okay.

Thanks for the comment! Appreciate it.

tshsmom said...

VERY wise words!!
I think this concept is something that comes with age, or maybe it took us this long to acquire the wisdom to recognize it.
Like Tom said, this IS difficult to do.

Anonymous said...

This is a beautiful post Cherie, one I will think of tomorrow when work falls at my feet and I get stressed out. You have such a great way of telling stories,and making me think!

Marianne Elixir said...

Deliciously challenging, as usual.

Cherie said...

Thanks tshs, sandy, and elixer! It helped me today, hope it helps you tomorrow, Sandy.

Anonymous said...

Lucky you for eating a fresh strawberry! Cassie was nice to share it. Great samuri story, one I'll keep in mind today.