Happiness is......

Happiness is surviving the gutted hours of another night when your existence is unknown to you... taking another walk....floating birdlike where clouds murmur into fog and realizing you have never been lost in mist, to stand on a bridge and know you have never been held under water...to smell the halitosis of death from a nearby place of ground and be grateful you yet live...to rely on the day to clear your vision as much as you possibly rely on night dreams to bring to you that which is not apparent...and to see your hands gripping the bridge rail and be acutely aware they are still there to do something-- hopefully something useful.

Happiness is breakfast. I sit with a white plate on my lap and I fork through scrambles of egg. I think about family, those before, the one after, and the genetic intention of varied purpose, the full rhapsodic lines that make our lives and sometimes run a muck.... what we haul, what carries us, what we score and what we lose, what we save, use.... what belongs to us and what to time.... and I quickly realize that  breakfast is a minute part of our reason for happiness.

Happiness is those things found in an all-but-forgotten drawer-- your grandmother's mother-of -pearl hair comb, your mother's hairpins, each with echoes of its owner, if not her scent. And there amid the dust of other things that are losing themselves to pieces, to dust, a pressed rose that offers no memory but must have been significant, a broken pinwheel that you pause to repin, a flat piece of limestone with a picture, a fossil in it, the autograph of a fish. It is quiet happiness, with no wheels for a quick getaway.  It could last all afternoon--- like reunion with old friends or time spent with a stranger who shows promise -- a lingering subtlety, the "Ah-hh-h"some, the sublime.

Let happiness still be fireflies that flash-decorate and relax the landscape from its colorful language of growth.... Let happiness be a steep hill to roll down.... Pull strawberries from their low plants.... Breathe in the smell of rain splattering dirt.... Ride a bicycle in a race with darkness or curfew matured into adult responsibility.... Eat ice cream, two bowls, and maybe, or maybe not, brush your teeth.... Lay on your left side first where your heart more strongly punctuates its beat, and then flat, to let the day peel off and the night roll over you.... Let happiness be a day spent joyfully and given up to peaceful sleep.