awkward is unavoidable, awkward is beautiful

21 Jul

seeing each other – acknowledging that we see each other – can feel awkward.  We raise are heads up and out – turtles – wondering about the world outside.  Venturing out, we see other turtles, some nearby,  their heads out, too – seems transparent now who is stirring  while sitting in classrooms, coffeeshops, the corner of the library, reading books like be here now, or the doors of perception…

I feel shy when I see you and I can tell you do, too.   I see the perk up when I get weird, when I mention the matrix or the nature of reality or the beauty of our pain and shared vulnerability – when I ramble.

It frustrates the linear, note-takers, no, nothing will be on the test, to answer your scrunched up face, just relax, sit back, let your mind wander, tell us what tangents excite you.

In the field of heads down, I see the random smile, a knowing nod.  eyes alit – I see you – you see me – we see each other at the same time which feels important. Is it enough to know the other is out there?

If you want, you can ask me anything!  You can approach before/after class.  We stand by the desk, not knowing where to begin.  Am I asking you or are you asking me?  – – Oh, so awkward.   I don’t have any answers for you – but I can be a touchstone that lets you know, there is something to these deviations you are finding so fascinating.  There is a path. That is something to KNOW.  haha.

You can show me some steps.   You thought maybe you were on to something, but weren’t sure under the pressure of all the others around you who were happy falling in line.  You wonder why you want to fall out of line. We are turtles on this log together.

Oh yes, here is the secret messages i can pass along –  IT sounds something like this:  you are a much loved little turtle, helping  you to see that you are love itself.  You are perfect – yet fixated on your imperfections on your knobby outside or deep into the secret insides that you think I see.  May I suggest that these perceived imperfections are here to help break you -to help crack the shell so protecting the gooey yolk within.  May I offer that we follow the whispers follow the goosebumps, follow the places that make us shiver and wonder how much more we can feel.  I say, let the anger rise, give it voice from a mountaintop, though it may take your turtle legs a while to reach the summit, and by the time you reach the summit, you may forget what angry shouts you were waiting to release.  

You are opening already – you are breaking your shell – which is why I can see you and you can see me. I am here, another pair of eyes – just another egg.  If I suggest a book, an idea, a work of art,  it is just something that is giving me goosbumps now, or did in the past.   You have your own internal meter for such things – which is much more important than anything I can point to…

But I don’t say these things.  I am cryptic.  Anything that can be said is out there already.  Words muss it up. And why talk when it is so nice on this sunny log, today, with you.  We can look together, while we bask in the glory of our chance, not chance, encounter.

We are ageless in a aged world.  You make me forget my name, energy, sound, color, light.

So curious am I about what lies beneath that bony home of yours.   I think I will get to see after you linger near trees as far as possible from the humans for a while – after you let the sun bathe your face in heat – when you water your feet in the ocean and the sand wears away what’s left of your shell.

I love you and you see that and that you see that shows that you are that love itself, and I am so glad that we crossed paths.  I myself am just getting used to and coming to love awkward , seeing awkward as where the juicy part can be.I don’t trust the smooth interaction that seems a facade riding on a surface of glib.  Our jjagged dialogue is good as we stumble and laugh together in this strange and present sit-com, now playing.

25 Responses to “awkward is unavoidable, awkward is beautiful”

  1. ViewPacific July 21, 2015 at 5:39 pm #

    Yes! It’s being in that awkward not-knowing that we can truly be present and alive.
    What disturbs that aliveness is thinking that we are knowing, that our path is a straight line ahead, that everything will be smooth as glass.
    Thanks for your awkward inspiration.

    • marga t. July 22, 2015 at 12:40 pm #

      here’s my awkward reply 🙂
      So nice to know you are on the same page, Vincent, in my awkward silences and in my conversation mis-starts and on my drive-by mental hugs. I write to remind myself to keep present instead of running away in the strangeness. Hope your ocean is a tad cooler than our bathwater these days.

  2. tiramit July 22, 2015 at 2:32 am #

    Wonderful, all of it is good. This one filled an empty space in me this morning…

    • marga t. July 22, 2015 at 12:42 pm #

      Hallo Tiramit. You seem very good at remaining in all the awkwardness, often finding the beauty enfolded within each tick of the tock. Where in the world are you, these days?

      • tiramit July 23, 2015 at 1:58 am #

        Thanks Marga, for me it’s a kind of stumbling reality forever revealing itself, seemingly accidental (within each tick of the tock) and I’m amazed. Now find myself back in Delhi with an accumulation of hours from other time zones…

  3. M.A. July 22, 2015 at 3:41 am #

    Some of us are comfortable accepting the uncomfortable, or rather, we can’t help ourselves accepting the uncomfortable whether we’re comfortable with it or not. And so, it comforts me to know you’re out there too.

    • marga t. July 22, 2015 at 12:44 pm #

      It is so nice in this m life knowing Michael is out there, going through his days, opening his book (awkwardness and all) for others to read! xo! m

  4. Michael July 23, 2015 at 1:40 am #

    This piece reminds me of a brilliant English teacher I had in college– burdened with the task of giving a lecture several days a week to a room packed with students from all majors who were punching their core curriculum tickets. He could delve so deeply into the stories and bring their depth to life in ways that really touched me. I ended up seeking him out one day, trying to figure out what to say, standing there in the heat of his office during office hours, thinking we would fall into this conversation that would catch us both on fire. We both tried– a little stilted– to recover the magic we’d stumbled across in which a student asked a question that mattered, a question as much about him and how he fit into the story as much as the story itself, and the response this fostered in a teacher who needed such a question that day… I think the effort that day was enough. Underneath the awkward is something that sneaks up later…

    I’ve often wondered what the real subject matter of “English” is, and I’m convinced now that in its purest form it is the cartography of the heart. Because I’ve had these awkward moments with more than one of my English teachers… But this isn’t exactly how the subject is advertised, or what we’re taught it is in the early stages of pronouns and antecedents and sentence structure workbooks.

    I take it you’re back in the classroom, waking a few turtles with a polite knock or two to their starving shells…!?

    I love your explorations of the unfolding human…

    • marga t. July 24, 2015 at 11:47 am #

      I adore your insight into the ruse of the subject matter itself, Michael – Being an English teacher can feel much like I’m a Marx brother wearing a doctor’s white coat pulling out my bicycle horn. What are we gathered in this room together to do? We may go over a grammar bit or paragraph structure, but the heart of the matter is a majestic terrain, in which I am as much a student as a teacher – honestly – you got it! I am not back in the classroom, rather remembering an amalgamation of various precocious and estranged beauties who have ventured beyond seeming boundaries, like you in that hot office, because I am playing a tune they remember and as I begin again this semester, I realized that the awkward moments I always seem to be trying to smooth out are in themselves necessary – as if it could be no other way. They knock on my shell and I sometimes rattle their cages – (I always seem to return to the Hafiz key dropping moment:) It warms me so how much you “get” – even as I ramble away without structure, form, or even proper grammar – gasp! Thank you for such insights, Michael, that add to my understanding of what I think of myself! m

  5. melinda blair July 23, 2015 at 3:18 am #

    Thank you Marga for this sharing. My partner and I loved the analogy of the turtle. Much love Mx

    • marga t. July 24, 2015 at 11:51 am #

      Thank you, Melinda, for sharing your response with me. Expressing feels so private within my little shell, but notes that reach inside are so treasured and courage-building for more ventures outside, again. xo!m

  6. Kelly Kuhn July 24, 2015 at 9:49 pm #

    Mmmm, can I go back in time and you stay where you are and I walk into your class and feel awkward yet safe with you? Alas, no, I was not ready to break open fully, although there were a few cracks, here and there. Now there are cracks everywhere and the breaking open seems to happen regularly. Do we have multiple shells on our turtle selves? Of course!

    You make me want to blog again, but then I close the browser tab of your blog and I go about my days…until your next post. It’s been nearly a year since I’ve written! Each time I read one of your posts I want to give you something back on my site. The time will come when it will feel right. Until then, marga, know that I have volumes I am silently sharing with you!

    • marga t. July 25, 2015 at 3:27 pm #

      Going about our days is what we do! It is where the flow is happening 🙂 I too have been talking longer and longer breaks from typing into the little window on here, but a year, goodness! I can’t believe it! I love how you are honoring the flow of now, which helps me see more and more that where we meet is somewhere out of time, and never far away! I do feel those volumes, KK, – and I send you love notes back! xo! m

  7. Ka July 27, 2015 at 4:41 pm #

    I understand this… Resonance… Log-sitting in silence 🙂 I see you, seeing me, feeling a deep sigh of relief that someone has the words to say it in the clarity of a ramble as awkward my first steps into another blog-kingdom.

    • marga t. July 28, 2015 at 12:50 pm #

      oh, i recognize your flow, i do! We’ve been on this log together before, haven’t we?

      • Ka July 28, 2015 at 4:24 pm #

        So familiar you are, it’s highly probable! 🙂 🙂

      • Ka July 28, 2015 at 5:22 pm #

        I like this log 🙂

      • marga t. July 29, 2015 at 4:04 am #

        I walked by a piece of lumber supporting the dock today and saw at least 10 turtles basking and thought of all us turtles, here – but they didn’t like me stopping to watch, so they all jumped back into the water.

  8. Dream and sense August 19, 2015 at 5:39 am #

    There is a smile on my face while reading it… and it’s not awkward 🙂

  9. 8rivers August 20, 2015 at 2:28 pm #

    I enjoyed the turtle analogy. Human social behavior is such a fickle thing. Sometimes I look at how a child handles a situation and marvel at the beautiful simplicity and naïveté.

    • marga t. August 23, 2015 at 1:33 pm #

      Your connection reminds me of the paradox of working back to beginner’s mind…

  10. Amy August 20, 2015 at 10:48 pm #

    Being a turtle lover, I loved thinking of us this way. The “shy, peeking out” bit such a cool and spot-on analogy to the way we people approach each other sometimes. Damn these shells though. And yes, maybe the awkward space fillers are necessary, but only because of a stupid?/learned? fear of being real and fully ourselves with each other. Maybe not. Maybe small talk and socially acceptable fumbling are our liberation… Otherwise we might be tempted to get too (unnecessarily) heavy in response to, say, a provoking blog entry… 😉 whatever segue way route I just travelled (and laziness precludes me from erasing/editing) I really love this. And will happily feel even more akin to turtles thanks to you! (And maybe even venture out of my own shell more as I think on this and blessed honesty…) warm regards to you, and thanks for this. (Forgive the length? Hope it says something!)

    • marga t. August 21, 2015 at 1:51 pm #

      Hi Amy,
      How refreshing are your words! I love the filter-free flow of your thoughts. You reframe for me with the phrasing, “small talk and socially acceptable fumbling are our liberation.” Fantastic. So true for as we step outside of social norms, we may make others run away in fear – so we have to venture out, bit by bit, until we are on shared and solid ground that enables more risk-taking trust 🙂 So nice to meet you here! marga

  11. megdekorne August 21, 2015 at 9:11 pm #

    Oh Marga , I so love awkwardness …your writing so beautiful and true …thank you beautiful one , love , megxxx

    • marga t. August 22, 2015 at 3:21 pm #

      Oh Meg, so so nice to see you here! Coming to love the awkward instead of running from it – a turning point for me. I have noticed my daughters and their friends are much more comfortable embracing awkward and sharing it – and finding humor in it. Refreshing! I will visit to see what you have been up to! xo! marga

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