1 Dec 2010

Week Three: Round-up of Photos and the Unexpected

The notion of the unexpected has had me somewhat baffled.

What is exactly is the unexpected?

The unexpected happens. Our expectations at the time and how we are feeling and thinking, determine the outcome of the situation. In Marci Schimoff’s book, Happy For No Reason, she offers the equation:

Event + Reaction = Outcome.

It’s a great equation, more so if you have enough of a witness quality in the moment to observe your (possibly habitual) reaction and adapt it if necessary. So we could say our attachment to our expectations causes pain. Letting go releases pain.

The unexpected happens when we feel we couldn’t possibly have foreseen something happening. Surely the unexpected actually happens every moment as we can’t possibly predict every occurrence in our day?

The unexpected seems to have many faces and raises a lot of questions. I can't quite seem to fully understand what it might be (thoughts welcome!). So here's a poem that I hope gives a sense of what the slippery unexpected brings or suggests to me. As with all poems, this is best said aloud, feel the words in your mouth and let the sounds roll around:

Sat 27th November

The Unexpected?

without words.
Fishing about for them
in some poetic shape or form
shadows at the bottom of 
the pool.
But perhaps
a paragraph today
is more eloquent?
A mouth more able 
to explain
the spaghetti dish
of strings that have been spun 
from that word
From fish to food
pool to plate
both unexpectedly come -
from where?
Little parachutes 
golden fishies swinging on pulse spaghetti
a thought, a word, a poem,
dropping in
floating up
to surface
to surface
what is the unexpected
will we recognise it?
will it match -
- expectations
or be thrown back
because the experience
is not the 
narrow one
we are fishing for  ?
can you catch fish 
in the dark with your
bare hands?
Are we still talking 
spaghetti and 
golden fishes?
Pretty, funny images

It's hard to eat spaghetti
without making a mess:
Suck it back up to your lips
begin again:

What is the unexpected?
Are fireworks so bright-delightful
because we feed them well on 
oohs and aahs?
Does tomorrow come
because we call it?
Or was it coming anyway,
or is it actually yesterday?

What is the unexpected?
Less of a shock
if we are open to change?
More of a joy
if we let it be?

Isn't the unexpected
the expected
because it is not 
the predicted?

What is the unexpected?
If you ask the same question
over and over again
does spaghetti
become gold-spun thread
and fish
have not parachutes
but wings?
What about the chicken egg egg chicken?
but didn't a chicken grow from a fish that walked
from a soup?
What if your egg
little egg
opened sesame
to reveal
a little little
baby crocodile?
Which continues to swim 
in the soup of its ancestors
yesterday is today is tomorrow
is time is simply time
is not really unexpected
if expected is given leave to be 
simply a moment in a moment as 
a moment is a moment
egg is an egg is spaghetti is golden thread
is fish is soup is a pool is 
a question?


Photos: sometimes words capture more, so here's my image for this week:

Imagine the scene: the local high street, a tiny shop with no sign above it, a small range of shoes and boots perched on boxes in the window display cheap flowers carefully arranged amongst them. The shop also offers Tarot readings and a sandwich board outside offers us some further information:

Mysterious cafe
Cake and coffee £2.50

I smile. Only here. Shoes, tarot, cake and coffee. Very unpexpected. Is this the niche-market work of an entrepreneurial genius? I’m unsure. But I like that someone’s trying it. You never know unless you try.


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