The word “abandon” often carries a negative connotation, but I occasionally find myself living with a positive and useful kind of ‘abandon’. As a noun, the word can mean living with a lack of inhibition or restraint, and every so often, I feel myself sort of sailing loose from my moorings and turning a few moments or hours into an impetuous escapade. I’m usually a fairly logical and predictable person, but now and then I like to live like a sailor with good sails, supportive winds, and no schedule. Even a few minutes of living with abandon – perhaps humming old songs as I tour my wife’s garden, or mixing mints and celery and ground beef with my scrambled eggs, or just skipping down the hall of our house – can balance the seriousness of life with some wholesome whimsy and gladness. 

These stray, on-the-loose blossoms beside the road this morning are, we might say, living with abandon,

at liberty to lean and mingle and spread seeds wherever they wish. They’re unrestricted and bounteous in their living and giving. I paused beside them on my walk, to wish them – and myself – the best kind of unhampered sharing and receiving.

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(about Sharon Z., 82, Blessings, CT)
She sees accord wherever she finds herself -
in her garden where agreement lives 
among the flowers, in the amicability of blossoms 
beside blossoms, the amity of roses 
meeting irises in friendliness, the fine-looking balance 
between pink and white petunias. 
Compatibility is a comforter she sees everywhere. 
It’s like life is a concert for her, 
a symphony of fellowship,
the tuneful flow of joyfulness and sorrow, 
darkness and radiance. She sees
the sympathetic friendship between frustration
and wisdom, and the symmetry between 
unhappiness and illumination. To her, 
all things seem like-minded, living by
consensus, like clouds and sunshine 
sharing the sky. She sees synthesis everywhere,
sighs mixing with smiles, births and deaths
making a melody she sometimes hears
as she feels her 82 years gliding along 
in unison like graceful, synchronized skaters. 

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Our chalkboard poem for today:

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