Saturday, June 02, 2007

Coffee Spoons

“I have measured out my life with coffee spoons:”

Elliot describes the hopeless, lethargic, paralysis of loneliness, where motion slows to a liquid stillness, as chopped and pasted together as a stop action film….Tom Stoppard would understand. Language.

A coffee spoon is tiny, miniscule, less than one half the size of a tea spoon, so to take the measure of one’s life with such an implement would surely make time stand still….Language.

Once, in France I explained to a French friend that after the disintegration of my marriage I was so shattered, in so many pieces, that my self seemed to no longer exist…She smiled knowingly and said “You mean you had to collect yourself with a coffee spoon”... une cuillère à café… God, I laughed when I heard that! That was a new way of putting it for me …..and ultimately an optimistic one for, even though a body broken into bits will take a long time to pick up with such a tiny spoon…it can be done. I love the French…..optimistic cynics that they are ….or cynical optimists…you choose. Language.

And then thinking of my Grandmother’s endless lessons of etiquette… ”The teaspoon with the tea cup….always use a good cup and saucer, never a tastes better.... The coffee spoon with the demitasse … The teapot is short and stout like the rhyme …the coffee pot tall and lean like Aunt Lucille….And don’t ever let Aunt Lucille see you put a carton of milk on the table!… We’d never hear the end of it. Mon Dieu! "