The Tenth Day of Christmas: October

October. Surprisingly, this isn't Halloween-related, as I went to no Halloween-related parties this year. I plan to make up for this by celebrating Halloween every month in 2012. Nay: every WEEK.

            As a kid, I was, as all kids are, generally obsessed with toys.

            Actually, I’m going to stop myself right here – I mean, who am I kidding with the past tense in that sentence?  I am still generally obsessed with toys, and it would only take the briefest of brief glimpses into my office (at home or at work) or at my Flickr feed to know that.  Not only am I still probably as obsessed with toys in my adulthood (using that word with liberties here) as I was in my childhood, I’m still obsessed with the same kind of toy: the miniature.

            As a kid, I loved toys that came with smaller scale versions of themselves: I loved Rainbow Brite for the Sprites, My Little Ponies for the smaller baby ponies (and their tiny baby bottles and even tinier baby pony toys), those Hug-A-Bunch dolls for the hideous baby Hug-A-Bunches held by the big ones in a Velcro-sealed hug.  I loved toys who were supposed to live in our world, just in a scale so small we couldn’t see them, like Rose Petal and her friends, who lived in our very front yards and filled our watering cans with their tiny, fabulous hot pink furniture.

            Now I can say that I loved the idea behind such toys, the prospect that the very world was full of wonders so small as to be nearly invisible, full of beautiful things that would reveal themselves if you paid very, very close attention.  And there was something about holding a whole world in the palm of your hand, something about looking into a small space and seeing that whole world which shifted perspective in a dizzyingly beautiful way.  Also, these tiny toys were, well, awesome.  All the Rose Petals dolls not only wore sparkly flower outfits, they smelled like flowers they were supposed to be.  I mean, seriously.

            While looking through my Flickr feed to find a photograph for October, I realized I never left my love for the miniature behind.  My camera is almost always in the macro setting, and my photos from the month of October are a series of serious close-ups: buttons and necklaces and fabulous fingernail glittercures* and, of course, toys.  A lot of this, I think, has to do with my resolution to better appreciate the smallest of beauties which surround me every day.  The thing is, once you start looking for the small and beautiful, the more small beautiful things you see.  The most agonizingly boring moment will suddenly reveal itself as more full of treasures than I could imagine: the way the light hits a button, the holes in a swath of lace, the raveled head of a piece of thread.

            October is also the month in which I fell and broke my talus bone.  This, my friends, just plain sucks.  It means a lot of couch sitting, which means a lot of agonizingly boring moments.  If there is one thing I definitely, absolutely, without-the-slightest-slimmest-thinnest-shadow-of-a-doubt hate, it’s having to slow down.  Looking through these photographs, however, I realized that, despite myself, I’d learned how to appreciate the most minute beauty because I’d slowed down – and maybe I need to slow down more often.**

* Oh yes.  You read that correctly: glittercure, meaning A MANICURE OF GLITTER.

** You may have noticed that I managed to avoid a lengthy and probably agonizingly boring discussion of the miniature and poetry and punctuation and how that joke about poets spending all their time before lunch putting in a period and then all their time after lunch taking it out is neither funny nor a joke when you actually do that.  Instead, may I offer this link to my statement on compression on Matter Press’ blog.  You should check out the other statements while you’re there, too.  It’s good stuff.