the grassy bed dream
June 10, 2009
in the dream….
Tiger Woods makes a putt. The green is weird. A four foot high plateau, a mini-plateau rises above the green, rectangular, like a tall grassy bed with grassy sides. The cup sits at the base of the mini cliff, the ball up on the plateau, on its edge. He makes the putt.
I ask him about it. He says there are two ways of making a putt like that, one the way he did, where he gently sends the ball over the edge and it rolls down the cliff, following its contour, or another, where the ball is hit a little harder, with a different stance and club, and it sails thru the air and falls directly into the cup. He tries to show me the second way and misses.
As he speaks this thought occurs to me:
While there is only one or two (or sometimes three?) ways to sink a ball into a hole, there are virtually countless, infinite ways of missing. There are finite ways to complete a task, but infinite ways of not completing it. For the one sentence that is full, clear, to the point, there are myriads left dangling, half-formed, floating in the air around our heads and hearts.
The world is a field of misses, incomplete thoughts, shanks, hooks, a great amorphic mesh of possibility and yearning and overshots. This is the ground into which we sink the ball, plant the seed, place the period. Threading our way through these tailings, the riff the raff the ruff, staying focused, finding the way to the hole, the whole, and moving on to the next and the next, line to line, sentence to sentence, sense to sense, whole to whole — this is the work.