Tuesday, February 2, 2010

My little loaf

As I was driving the kids home today, I thought back to a time, many years ago, when Paul bought me a "spa day," for my birthday. This was back when I was young and wrinkle-free, and didn't really need it.

I was slathered with sea salt and wrapped in a foil burrito, and I was left in a dark room to marinate in the warm goodness. I listened to the New Age-y music and felt so warm and heavy, just enveloped in deliciousness.

As I was driving the boys home, more than anything, I wanted to feel that way again. It's been snowy and cold here, and it is supposed to stay cold and snow some more.

It's times like this that I long for a place of warmth, a place where I can close my eyes, rest, and just hibernate for awhile.

In the meantime, I make myself busy with projects. I made bread:
There's satisfaction in tasks like this, although if I'm going to take this Pollan-inspired hysteria along for the long haul, I may choose to invest in a bread machine. 

While kneading, I thought of Sylvia Plath. I adore Sylvia. I feel bad that she married such a crumb of a man, and I wish things didn't end so terribly for her. I admire her work ethic, and her relentless need to create. 

It's her verses about motherhood and pregnancy that touch my soul most profoundly. As I re-read her words, I'm reminded of how much I love my boys, and how much my mother loves me, and how, in the midst of this wintery blanket, I am still cherished. I am still beautiful.

I will rise, like a loaf of bread. 


Clownlike, happiest on your hands,
Feet to the stars, and moon-skulled,
Gilled like a fish. A common-sense
Thumbs-down on the dodo's mode.
Wrapped up in yourself like a spool,
Trawling your dark as owls do.
Mute as a turnip from the Fourth
Of July to All Fool's Day,
O high-riser, my little loaf.

Vague as fog and looked for like mail.
Farther off than Australia.
Bent-backed Atlas, our travelled prawn.
Snug as a bud and at home
Like a sprat in a pickle jug.
A creel of eels, all ripples.
Jumpy as a Mexican bean.
Right, like a well-done sum.
A clean slate, with your own face on.


Bethany said...

Great post Nancy. I love Sylvia too. A crumb of a man, little loaf, your bread making, perfect.
I wish for you that warmed taken care of spa relaxed feeling. As I was reading I thought, oh yes, this sounds perfect. I need this TOO.
But I'm not sending hugs or prayers ;-)
Would a bubble bath help? That's what I thought the first photo was when I looked quickly. I thought, oh she went home and drew herself a bath.
I'm rambling.
I'm glad you make bread and write.

June said...

Bread dough in the bathtub?
Maybe you ought to fill that tub with some hot water and take a bubble bath. That always helps chase off the winter doldrums for a couple hours at least.

Nothing smells better than bread baking in the oven!

Corrie Howe said...

I can tell you are and English teacher.

I thought you were going to post how you did you own spa treatment with sea foam and burritos. That would be a hoot.

Daffy said...

Believe it or not, I do have some edumacation and I do lurve me some Plath.

A spa day sounds so delightful....hmmmm....maybe that's what I'll tell the hubs I'd like for Valentines Day. This is the first year that I can remember that he's expressed an interest in getting me something :O) said...

Ahhh..a spa day sounds heavenly.

Tracie said...

Did I ever tell you that I was reading The Bell Jar the night before I got married? That says a lot, no?

Melani said...

Don't know who Sylvia Plath is, but I will Google her and find out who she is. Great Post as usual, I love to read your stuff :)

Janet said...

try an electric blanket...I forgot how wonderful they are.

Caution Flag said...

One of my profs had a hate/hate relationship with Sylvia's work, so I inherited that. Then, last year I got to teach some of her work and Anne Sexton's, too, and I absolutely fell in love with both. Now, go buy a used hot tub. (The best gift I ever gave myself :)

Unknown Mami said...

Did you just call me your little oaf?

only a movie said...

Oh, very nicely done.

Nikia, May and da kids said...

That was nice = )

... and warm.


Amie said...

Ah, I love me some Sylvia Plath. Great bready post.

Cat said...

So well written... now I need to read some Plath.