May 4, 2009
There's a Korean saying describing sleeping arrangements for young families that goes, "the parents should be the mountains, and the children are the valley between." While the words probably sound better in Korean I like the imagery. As a kid I remember that feeling of being nestled between my parents or my grandparents as the safest most secure of hideouts. I also literally remember the adults as mountains—huge and immovable. I remember studying their arms, legs, and torsos noting patterns of freckles and wear, climbing over and around them, and even of tracing the whirls of their fingerprints. I would put my head to their chests to listen to the murmur and rumble of their internal machinery, and I would survey their slack sleeping faces inch by inch. More than once I had the thought that I should I ever get lost in the dark I could find them by scent alone. So when I wake up from a nap and sense my two year old an inch away from my face, or gently pulling at my earlobes, or studying my toes, I leave my eyes closed and play possum. I want him to make a good map.