The Great Mystery | 4.16.21

If asked to describe it, to quantify it with words or fumbling thoughts, I’d offer up three: The Great Mystery. This is life, to me. The life I lived as a child, wandering from city to city following the boys of summer — my Dad’s baseball teams in minor league ballparks from Bakersfield to Kinston, Albuquerque to Great Falls — was more magic than I knew at the time. Every year, some great unknown as to where we’d spend our precious few months out of school, every year learning the landscape of some new place, missing our friends back at home, but feeling connected to something so much bigger than ourselves. The Great Mystery. Sure there was mayhem from time to time, chaos in the cross-country drives, the apartment complexes and the deep end of two dozen different swimming pools, but my god there was magic. The firework shows from the outfield grass, the Bazooka bubblegum, the yellow Gatorade after shagging fly balls on an Albuquerque August day, the way siblings have to be best friends when there’s no one else around to fill the gaps, the way they stay that way two and a half decades later. Magic in this mystery, in this peripatetic way of living, magic in the hands that surf the wind out a VW van rattling down a blue highway at dusk.

I’m still chasing what I lived, still trying to fill my mind with slideshows I’ll look back on with nostalgia when my body starts to fail me, still trying to tap into that Mystery. Maybe that’s all life really is, in the end, getting as close to that Great Mystery as possible, without ever truly figuring out what it is. After all, where’s the fun in that?

I know what I lived

the magic and the mayhem,

the great mystery.

Haiku on Life by Tyler Knott Gregson


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