Friday, July 9, 2010


This morning, driving to work, my hand rested on an object I touch every day and for some reason its texture created sensations and images unrelated to the object. Right now, a cat lies partially on top of the sofa and partially around my neck like one of those u-shaped air plane pillows. Her arm is stretched out. I feel her soft fur against the bottom of my cheek. One claw is exposed and rests ever so gingerly against my neck. It is a gentle reminder that I am her human and exist to serve her needs. It matters not my coffee cup is empty. I look outside and see the evergreen trees with their soft green fingers and squishy pine cones. Both needles and cones become quite prickly when they have dried and fallen to the ground.

I risk my jugular and retrieve a cup of coffee. Holding the cup in my hand, its warmth soothes the arthritis and I feel the image that is fired into the mug. The music’s speed and melody taps against my ear drums. The clouds look like giant cotton balls you could squeeze between your fingers and watch them pop back to their original shape. I can feel the laptop’s keyboard. I notice the little ridges on the “J” and “F” keys to let you know your hands are in the correct typing position. Textures. Today my mind has been keenly aware of the textures around me.

For the past two weeks a woman passes by my door every morning, sticks her head in and says hello. She hurt herself at work and is working in the office until her injury is healed. This morning, as she does, her head popped in and she said good morning. I turned and greeted her with a happy Friday and noticed the texture on her face. I pushed my chair back from the desk and asked if she was ok. Her texture changed. “I was just feeling sorry for myself but I’m ok now.” The softness of her smile made me remember the texture of a simple hello.

The texture of cold can heal a fevered body or be the cause of death. The texture of colors can lift one’s spirits. The texture of dark can drive to ground the last ounce of hope. The texture of one hand brushing against another’s can stir a night of passion or break the hand’s heart if meant as a good-bye. The sweetness of some foods cannot overcome their texture. We do or don’t like images because of how they make us feel.

Textures are both primal and ethereal. Perhaps, in my busy world, they are also often unnoticed. And so, for you, for me, and for the world, with the texture of a whisper, I say go
soft into the evening; feel the touch of your head upon your pillow and the texture of your eyelids opening to feel the fabric of a new day, the texture of hope.