We are self-centered little creatures, aren’t we? It’s very hard indeed not to see the world revolve around us. From the pupils of our eyes, to the colors, sights, and sounds of that all appear for us alone.

11 gandhiOf course there are a thousand examples of humanitarians, of the givers, the selfless ones among us, the Gandhi’s, the Martin Luther King’s, the Mother Teresa’s, the village midwife or childhood teacher.

We all remember them well, and so we should.

What I’m talking about is us, you and me, whose live on the most important planet in the solar system that circles the most important sun in the universe. Our sun. Our solar system. Our Earth. Our country. Our town. Our home. Our body. Our brain.

I’m in Idaho this week, in Sandpoint, Idaho to be specific, visiting dear friends of ours whom Nettie and I met in St. Thomas (the most important island in the Caribbean, in case you’re wondering…at least while we lived there).



Sandpoint is a quaint small town, a very pretty small town with friendly townsfolk and with beautiful lake Pend Oreille bordering and nourishing it (pronounced¬†ponderay, French don’t you know), and the rather spectacular Selkirk, Cabinet and Bitteroot mountain ranges looming over it, and where Schweitzer Ski Resort is located.



Schweitzer offers a summer sport venue when the white season has melted. We visited it yesterday and took a chair lift up to the top of one of its impressive peaks.



It’s a bit odd to visit a purpose-built location when that purpose is suspended in time until winter returns. Oh sure, there’s mountain biking and hiking to do instead of skiing it’s true, but still the venue is eerily in pause mode.

We walked along the summit of the hill, Dave, our friend, and Nettie and I.



That’s when I saw it in the single white flower clinging to the hard-scrabble earth.

6 groundhog


I saw it, too, in the groundhog pups from this spring’s litter chasing each other in the rocks.

I saw their moment, their brief eternal moment here at the center of their universe.

The flower was in its own race to bloom and pollinate and perpetuate before the snow returned to smother it.

The groundhogs, too, were chasing the dazzling cord of their future as it unfurled before them in the summer sun.

It’s so easy to see how each individual thing is consumed by the imminent sensation of itself. What’s harder, but what’s truer somehow, is to sense the intersection of ourselves within these moments, to connect in time and space with the center that runs through us all.

In Idaho, the most important state in the union this week, in Sandpoint, the most important city in Idaho today, at Cindy and Dave’s house, the most important house in Sandpoint, it’s clearer to me that it’s been in a long, long time.


One Response to It’s So Easy

  1. Beautiful piece, Frank. Have you seen the movie Boyhood? Your essay reminds me of the last line, which I will not divulge here in case you haven’t seen it.

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