Sometimes, when I'm all caught up in the importance of finding the perfect table or lamp or arrangement of books, I realize that it's not really any of those things that's needling me. It's really a craving for the simplest thing. And it's in those moments that I savour the easiest of pleasures; the sun on eyelids, or splashing crisp water on my face on a hot day, or the smell of a fresh-cut stem. And the more sensitive to those simple things I become, the more I want of them. I wake up and crave them around me: Crisp sheets and cool floors under bare feet, perfect leafy breezes and lemons.
In every small thing, I look for that moment and when it comes I drink it in. And when it doesn't come, I want to race on to the next moment and find it there instead. It feels like the soundest form of greediness: Greediness for simple beauties. And it makes all the material cravings seem so hollow and silly and futile. But still I'm happy to have them both, because it makes me see how much there can be as well as how little there needs to be. I need to hang on to that. This is by Raymond Carver...
I want to get up early one more morning,
before sunrise. Before the birds, even.
I want to throw cold water on my face
and be at my work table
when the sky lightens and smoke
begins to rise from the chimneys
of the other houses.
I want to see the waves break
on this rocky beach, not just hear them
break as I did all night in my sleep.
I want to see again the ships
that pass through the Strait from every
seafaring country in the world—
old, dirty freighters just barely moving along,
and the swift new cargo vessels
painted every colour under the sun
that cut the water as they pass
I want to keep an eye out for them.
And for the little boat that plies
the water between the ships
and the pilot station near the lighthouse.
I want to see them take a man off the ship
and put another up on board.
I want to spend the day watching this happen
and reach my own conclusions.
I hate to seem greedy—I have so much
to be thankful for already.
But I want to get up early one more morning, at least.
And go to my place with some coffee and wait.
Just wait, to see what's going to happen.