Tagged stars

The big of it

“You never felt love so big? I love so hard…”

“I guess I just don’t understand. I’m sorry,” she said.

“Let me see. You know how you feel when you look up at the sky? All those stars, the moon, the planets?” I asked.

“Yeah, it’s just beyond words. Amazing,” she looked up again in the dark, sighing.

“That’s how I feel when I see you. Every time.”

Don’t count the stars, she says…

“Everything about you is extreme.”

This is what the tarot-card reader told me a few months back. “No shit, lady,” is what I wanted to say, but instead wore a smug grin, the occasional laugh escaping. I tried to hide my disbelief while I took notes in my book. I wrote everything. Extreme…

So what?

This is a question I’m often jotting in the margins of student papers. It’s so easy to use heavy words, concepts really, without definition: words without the picture-frame-like backs to hold them up. But she was right. Everything. The broad works here.

I feel a chapter ending. I feel… confused. I feel like I don’t have many chapters left to go if I keep burning through them so quickly. One person can only do so much. And I know it in my heart, yet feel I need to be superwoman. Even if I were—cape-clad and toting otherworldly powers—it still wouldn’t be enough.

On Tuesday, I left class and walked to my car alongside a very kind student of mine. She is from a middle eastern country, and so, startled by the bright eye of the moon [as always] I turned to her and asked if there were any myths or stories about the moon in her country.

“Sorry. I’m just sort of preoccupied with the sky a lot.”

She understood and stopped at the top landing of the cement stairs, our unspoken point of departure: “Let me think… no, but there is something with the stars.”

At this point, I may have been drooling. Something about the universe just does it for me. I guess I’m both THAT simple and THAT complex.

“My grandpa always warned me not to count the stars. I don’t know what, but something bad would happen. I always wanted to, but was too afraid to look for too long.”

After some later goose-chase online, I found what I was looking for: http://rosmee.wordpress.com/2009/09/02/count-the-stars-dhofar-sinkhole-shihait/

One blogger had an answer. While it is a fantastical folktale or not, I gleaned my own truth. What is the moral? What am I to learn? [The exact topic I’ve been lecturing about in class: the folktale.]

With no idea of it, this student gave me my own lesson. It wasn’t anything she said, but everything I knew that she didn’t need to say. I’d been stargazing too long. Wrapped up in my own head, striving for my own definition of “success”—essentially the unattainable. Time to come down to earth, lady.

It’s time.
mt