| | | | | |

Little Things

Elle est retrouvée!
Quoi? -l’Éternité.
C’est la mer allée
Avec le soleil.

She is found!
What? -Eternity.
It’s the sea gone
With the sun. — Arthur Rimbaud

Sunsets are routine, often ritualized. Little things, really, repeated daily. I’ve been known for carrying on about such things as the position of the sun relative to where it was in warmer days. Most people, it seems, could care less about where the tilt of the earth is. We are what we focus on.

“Little things in life, which afford what [Daniel] Kahneman calls “experiences that you think about when you’re having them,” provide a great deal of everyday enjoyment. Because you’re apt to pay more attention to your remembering than your experiencing self, however, it’s all too easy to forget to indulge yourself in these small but important pleasures on a daily basis, thus depriving yourself of much joy.” — Winifred Gallagher, Rapt

I should think life would be less enjoyable the very moment one forgot to savor the little things. We get used to things that once delighted us, looking for the next big thing to replace that feeling, always chasing. Never really savoring.

Most writers have an eye for details, and linger in them longer than the average bear, seeking a deeper understanding. There’s pleasure to be derived from digging deeply into what seems trivial. Consider Rimbauld’s twelve words, arranged just so, that draw so much out of what someone else might think of as just another sunset. Poetry itself might be thought a little thing. Ah, but what things they are, sunsets and poems! I think I’ll stick with little things, thank you.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply