Thursday, March 26, 2009
Of giants and flying~
Driving home after lunch at a local steak house, my son and I were quiet. My mind wandered. I looked out the window at the naked trees--stiff, brittle, and woody-- but in the late sunlight the bare branches somehow looked soft as grass. Wispy. A giantess could dip the branches into mud makeup and apply color to her humungous cheeks with a tree, I think.
I asked David, "If a giant--a really huge one--were standing in the woods, would the trees feel soft to him?"
"What do you mean?"
"Would the trees feel soft to someone so much bigger than they are? The way moss feels soft to us?"
"Mosssssss, " I say. "If something very tiny were driving through a moss forest, the moss might feel stiff and tree-like, even though it's soft to us."
"Why would the giant have to be so big, Mom?" he asks, and I think he doesn't understand.
"He has to be big enough to step on trees," I say.
"There are some very small things we could step on that would feel sharp. Like thistles. It's not about the size. It's about what things are made of."
He's right. If giants step on a tree, they better be wearing boots. Trees would be sharp, even for giants. Massive splinters!
When we pull into the driveway, Dave says, "What super-power would you rather have? Being invisible or able to fly?"
I picture my mid-life body struggling to stay afloat in the air while I frantically flap my arms. Who wants the neighbors to see that?
"Can I be invisible while I fly?"
"No. One or the other."
"Then definitely invisible," I say. "Besides, I'm afraid of heights."
"Well, you wouldn't need to be if you could fly, " he says.
And I suppose if I could fly I wouldn't need to flap my arms frantically, I think. I'd soar effortlessly. But I don’t change my mind. Invisible is better. More useful.
Back to reality, when we get in the house Dave goes down stairs to study for a poly-sci test. He'll drive back to campus tomorrow.
I make tea, and think some more. I love taking to Dave. He's fun. He humors me. He gets me. He'll talk about giants. And super powers.
We all need at least one person in our life who does that.