Monday, November 11, 2013

the magic in this world

Of course, I'm late to the affogato craze. So late, that it's probably not even a craze by now. Affogato means 'drowned' in Italian, and is traditionally made with espresso and gelato. A very nice post here on the history of gelato.

Whether in writing, or in photography, or in cooking, I'm a firm believe in making the most out of what one has. I do happen to have an espresso machine. I also happened to have a small container of Haagen-Dazs Mayan Chocolate ice cream.

What I needed, before heading into work late one morning, was to be awake, and to be happy.

I can tell you that this beautiful concoction worked like a charm.

“It's all a matter of paying attention, being awake in the present moment, and not expecting a huge payoff. The magic in this world seems to work in whispers and small kindnesses.”

-- Charles de Lint

“I used to think of that line in Allen Ginsberg’s Howl, about ‘the sad cup of coffee.’ I’ve had cold coffee and hot coffee, good coffee and lousy coffee, but I’ve never had a sad cup of coffee.”

- Robert Rauschenberg on the Beat poets

And you, have you ever had a sad coffee? Oh, I have, I have. Sad coffees, and coffees full of longing, and coffees so exhausting and coffees that were confident and coffees of disbelief and coffees quietly glad.

“The sweetest thing in all my life has been the longing — to reach the Mountain, to find the place where all the beauty came from — my country, the place where I ought to have been born. Do you think it all meant nothing, all the longing? The longing for home? For indeed it now feels not like going, but like going back.”

- C.S. Lewis

If we were having coffee together today, what would we talk about?

Longing, certainly.

The agony of writing.

About getting through. Just that.

I would tell you about things going lost in the mail and via email. We would talk about the difficulty of communication. Expectations being dashed and promises not fulfilled. Empathy. Trying to imagine why.

And what are you reading? And. I'm reading the book of short stories by Aimee Bender before bed, one at a time. Highly disturbing, ha, should not be reading them before sleep.

If we were having coffee together, I'd tell you about all the things driving me mad currently, of which there are far too many. It's funny, there are so many. It goes like this though, right? Then one thing will be set back in place, and the rest won't seem quite so mad-making. That's the hope anyway.

And if we were having coffee together we could talk about the magic in this world. All the whispers and small kindnesses.

One thing for sure, no one has ever had a sad affogato.

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