Blake said, "He who does not prefer Form to Colour is a Coward!" I often wish the creator had been more of a coward, giving us many fewer forms and many more colors . . .
Dillard is talking about the generosity of life forms on our planet. All of the evolutions and mutations and permutations that have existed through time--from mastodons to mallards. Dillard is overwhelmed, it seems, by the sheer magnitude of animals, plants, fish, birds, lizards. Her minds wants to know them all, but simply can't. So, she contradicts Blake: she wants color (beauty) over form (fecundity).
My apologies for not posting last night. I became overwhelmed by fecundity. Lots of busy work. New class to teach. Conference with a student. By the end of the day, I was wishing for a little less form, a little more color, just like Dillard. I can say without reservation that summer, for me, has quickly transitioned into the insanity of autumn, with all its attendant obligations.
However, I am looking forward to a relaxing evening with my book club. Lots of good food. Lots of good friendship. Lots of laughter. If you're interested, our selection this month was Mary Roach's book Stiff, which is her exploration of the various uses and stages of human cadavers. If that sounds gross, it is, but Roach is also funny as hell. She makes reading about the process of decomposition palatable even for me. (I may work in a surgery center, but I want no contact with whatever goes on in those rooms in the back.)
My family is currently not at home. I have the whole place to myself, which rarely happens. As I sit here typing this post, I'm enjoying a little color in the form of classical music. Pretty soon, this moment will come to an end. I still have to cut up a pineapple for book club tonight, and I have to get my chocolate fondue fountain going (per my son's request). This is the calm before the metaphorical storm.
Because of the fecundity of my week, I'm craving solitude. This afternoon, as I was answering phones, registering patients, responding to students' e-mails, one thought kept playing through my head: "I am done with people." If my phone rings, I don't want to answer it. If I get a text message, I don't want to respond. If a neighbor kid comes knocking at my door trying to sell magazine subscriptions, I will turn off the lights and pretend that I'm not home. I'm weary of crowds.
Tonight, Saint Marty chooses color over form. His apologies to William Blake.