Slap, Slap, Slap


Watching traffic buzz along like aimless bees, I hear “slap, slap, slap” coming up behind me.  I pause a moment before I turn, wondering what this mystery sound could be.  “Slap, slap, slap.”  My mind frolics with possibilities.  “Slap, slap, slap.”  Whimsical rainbow fish falling from the sky?  “Slap, slap, slap.”  A walrus in a hurry?  “Slap, slap, slap.”  A bear on a bicycle with a flat tire?  “Slap, slap, slap.”  I turn.  A little brown man in a dust-colored sweater, hunched against the cold is hurrying.  The sun reflects from his bald dome atop a white ring of hair like an egg.  He smiles a toothless smile as he passes.  “Slap, slap, slap,” go his slippers as he scurries home.  Much better than a walrus in a hurry.

A small stone in River of Stones entry.

Copyright Jean Mishra 2012

Committee of the Bushy-Tails


Convened in gentle morning sunlight, the committee’s called to order.  Each participant is at its post and eager to begin.  Poised and alert.  Focused.  Third-floor clothes line, second floor balcony, fifth-floor brick jutting from the façade.  The straggler waits on the rock wall across the lot.  A shrill “pee-deep!” rings out; seconded.  A third barks to disagree.  Heated squeaking debate rings out.  Bushy tails flailing; throes of squirrely conviction, argued.  The loudest will prevail; until tomorrow.

A small stone in River of Stones entry.

Copyright Jean Mishra 2012

These little squirrels live all over the apartment complex.  I see them every day climbing the building like it was tree, going from balcony to balcony, nosing in potted plants, peering in windows.  They don’t miss much.  Every morning they convene in their favorite places and “peep” to each other.  I often wonder what they’re talking about.

You Can’t Buy Love


Have you ever tried to define “love?”  It’s not so easy, is it?  Eventually you end up with a long elaborate list of rules, expectations and metaphors that still seem to wander off the path.  Well, they don’t just wander, they end up wandering off, tripping, and falling over a precipice never hoping to reach their destination.  Love, quite simply, is one of those things that defy words.  You know what it means.  If you try to intellectualize it, you end up with a confused mess.  But sit silently with it and there’s no mistaking it.  Love.

I’ve recently run across pictures that very humbly define “love.”  These pictures are of men who are homeless, at least that’s what I infer from the pictures.  They look cold and hopeless.  How does their predicament show “love?”  Just take a look.

These are men who have run across hard times.  They have the clothes on their backs.  They also have their dogs.   Dogs and human beings snuggled close, giving each other warmth in the cold, but if you look more closely you can see something else.  Besides body heat they are also sharing that wordless need we all have; to be wanted, to be needed, to give love and be loved in return.  I see the food of hope in that essence between men and dogs.  I see it fanning the dim spark of faith and keeping it tenuously alive; a “maybe” for tomorrow.  I see safety and security of the soul even though it doesn’t exist for them materialistically.  I see love in all it’s silent beauty.

It’s all the proof in the world you can’t buy love.  These men have nothing to give these dogs that they can’t give themselves to survive, but they have their bond of love.  In its simplicity nothing is being taken for granted.  It sure gives you perspective.

Tea Cup Tango


Steaming teacup promises chill-chasing inside smiles.  Black pepper burn, ginger tang and cinnamon kiss dance in milky abandon.  Rising from the cup, aromatic bliss teases the nose.  Taste buds reach in gleeful anticipation of a spicy hot bath.

A small stone in River of Stones entry.

Copyright Jean Mishra 2012