Posted by: carolyn / through a widow's eyes | October 17, 2010

Too precise to be random

I’m driving from Sullivan to Bar Harbor on the Mud Creek Road shortcut. Take Route 1 south to Mud Creek Road to 184 to 204 to 3. Cutting out about a dozen traffic lights intown, it’s an easier drive, and prettier by far. When Jeff & I were crisscrossing Hancock County scouring this area looking for the perfect piece of land, I scoffed at the name Mud Creek Road, and said to him, Who would ever buy property with that name? What were they thinking?

Little did I know then, it’s one of the most beautiful stretches around: expansive grassy fields leading down to Skillings River, which flows into and mingles with Frenchman Bay, lovely tranquil marshes with their primordial color and smell, distant evergreen forests, a natural bird sanctuary, a few houses and farms perched above elegant tidal reaches.

I had long wanted to stop and explore where the river winds round the road and the tide rushes in and out through a culvert underneath, but we were always on the way somewhere when we were on this road, and we never did. But on this moodily overcast fall day, I was alone, as is so often the case now, and unhurried. The car was full of stuff, and something was rattling unmercifully in the back, so I stopped to adjust the load at this one wide place, a gravel pulloff by the river.

Afterwards, I walked away from the car to get a little closer to the river. I nearly stepped on this mushroom in its grassy nest.

It was an an intriguing color so I stooped down to have a closer look.

Hello baby.

All the years we could have pulled off the road in this spot or another just like it,  all the myriad of color, form, and shadow to look at here, all the places a person can choose to put her feet, all the chances to look up and not down, and I happen to stop on this day, right here at this spot, at this moment, when this mushroom is peeling back its scars to reveal this tiny heart, and I am attentive enough to notice. Too precise to be random.

Thanks and gratefulness to M. for introducing me to this phrase and concept,  and showing me there are many things too precise to be random.

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