Years later, when Sport was thirty years old, she remembered the unique kindness of her first-grade art teacher who defended her in the year that she didn't feel safe. It was a memory that came top-of-mind to her whenever she puzzled about her dual memory stream, especially given that she was so scared when both her parents became unraveled and shouted at her, "You have to be out of your mind!" The impact of the incident upon Sport did not dawn on her until after the bus accident that marked the sudden turn of her life. She was just a little girl, but her parents planted an idea in her that she was crazy.
She wanted to please them to change their opinion of her. Things did not go much better at school. The first-grade teacher seemed to have a dubious assessment of Sport also. It wasn't what she said to Sport. It was how nervous she made Sport's stomach feel.
In a way, it was the art teacher's encouragement that incited Sport's natural tendency to effervescence and energy. Sport could see the affection that this teacher had for her in her red-haired, freckly smiles. She had never seen anyone else in the mountains with her own hair color and complexion, and, for that reason, Sport felt at ease with this fun person of instruction since day one.
"You showed me how to cut pretty paper and use paste to make things," Sport cried in a trembling pout the next day at school after the incident of parental explosion. "My daddy was decorating with wall paper, and when he was gone, I put up some paper to help him. I wanted to surprise him. But they told me I messed up the wall and that I mess up everything and that I am not a good girl because I don't have good thoughts sometimes. They told me they want to take me to see a doctor about my mind."
Alone with Ms. Swanson in the art room, Sport rushed to the sweet lady's calming arms. Her teacher hugged her close until she stopped crying.
"Aw, gentle Sport, I think maybe your parents had a bad day and they just yelled, honey," the teacher comforted. "But you know what? When I was a little girl, I was always in trouble, too, because of my imagination. We red-heads just have lots of funny mischief in us that people need time to get used to. Didn't you know this?"
"No," Sport admitted. No one had ever told her something like that before.
"Well, putting up wall paper is hard work, and it has to be done perfectly, or bubbles appear in it. It's a grown-up job that is not possible even for some grown-ups. You just didn't know this."
"No, I didn't," Sport answered. Her chest had stopped heaving from the sobs. "But I am scared to tell them things because they act funny with me when I do. I never told them about my dreams about the people who died. Well, I am not sure if they are dreams, because I still see them and remember."
Ms. Swanson took Sport's arms and extended her backwards so that she could see her face. Sport saw her tender smile, but she also saw the questioning in her eyes. She had tried to tell her parents a couple of times before, but they didn't look comfortable at all, and shortly after the last time, they began using that expression that she was out of her mind. Now she wasn't sure whether Ms. Swanson knew what to do with this news.
"What do you mean, sweetie? Who died?"
"They couldn't breathe," Sport said. "Everything was okay in the..." She looked up at her art teacher and saw the puzzlement on her face. "I don't remember," she said, and the teacher's expression relaxed somewhat. Her art teacher was the only person who didn't seem to find her annoying, and she didn't want to lose the safe feeling with her. Most of the time, when Sport tried to think of the dream, she couldn't quite bring back what it was about. In Ms. Swanson's arms that morning, however, she remembered some things in stark detail.
They had left the place of bright colors a long time ago. She remembered seeing through a window the circle that kept getting smaller. There were grownups in the rooms with her most of the time, always busy with the lights and the machines. They talked a lot, but nothing stuck in her memory about what they said.
Until they got excited and said they had flown too close to the star that stole their energy.
There was a lady whom Sport kept getting confused with her mother on the few occasions that she could recall some of these details.
Why did we come here? Sport thought she had asked once. She also thought that the woman had been crying.
We were coming to help because their time has come, said the woman's voice. They are shooting things into the void. Some are good. Some are bad, like in our ancient days.
One day the word came to Sport's mind when she was with Ms. Swanson, so she asked her what "ancient" meant. Ms. Swanson laughed and told her that it meant "very old." Her teacher looked at Sport curiously and said to her, "Sport, if your mother will let you, why don't you and I go on a picnic up on the mountain Saturday?" Sport was thrilled. The teacher saw her mother later that afternoon, and the special time with Ms. Swanson was set.
When they got out of the car, her teacher took Sport's hand and they went to a path that ambled beside a gurgling stream and began to ascend. Ms. Swanson stopped at intervals for them to catch breath. On one of the breaks, she asked, "So tell me, Sport, what do you want to be when you grow up?"
"A school teacher, " Sport replied quickly. "I want to help people like you do."
They came to a point on the path that had a clearing on the left that offered a view of the valley and neighboring mountains. On the right of the path was the steep, vertical ascent of the mountain that they were on. Something about the vista in that particular place and the moist smell of humidity on Sport's skin triggered a dream memory that Sport was unsure whether she had experienced it or not.
She saw the people from the journey lying motionless among the trees, except for one or two who struggled with breathing. The one that she confused with her mother raised her head slightly, trying to answer Sport's questions. Sport suddenly had an overwhelming feeling of suffocation.
There is not quite enough oxygen here, the woman said weakly to Sport.
The dream memory was making Sport skittish. She ran to Ms. Swanson. "I can't breathe!" she told her. In the arms of her teacher, she remembered the attack of panic that she had experienced earlier that winter. The doctor had come to the house.
"When Sport can't breathe, she goes into absolute panic," said her mother.
"She needs more oxygen," the doctor replied. "You have it too stuffy in her room. I myself am hot in your home. When Sport has trouble breathing and gets upset, open the windows in her room so she can get more air."
Ms. Swanson had sat on a log, and Sport had climbed into her lap. The two were quiet until Sport's breathing became regular and she calmed. Then Ms. Swanson said to her, "Are you okay, honey? I think maybe you have some kind of asthma or allergy. Does this happen to you often?"
"Yes, ma'am," replied Sport.
"Okay, well, we will just sit here until you are ready and we can talk. Later we'll go back to the car and get our picnic basket and eat at that table area we saw. How does that sound?"
"Great! I'm hungry!"
Ms. Swanson laughed. She stroked Sport's curly, red hair.
Sport thought about what she had seen on television the previous night. A rocket had been counting down to lift off. They had played what President Kennedy had once said, that the United States would be the first to put a man on the moon. When the rocket began its climb, Sport saw the brightest light she had ever seen issue underneath it, and then the light followed the rocket into the sky as if it were pushing it.
It was like the light that put the end to her memories.
Introduction: Planetary Life
Sport felt like she was drowning as she left the birth canal, too tiny to swim, but determined to scream right into the bright shining of life. A red-headed, green-eyed, noisy little monster. she was born into a room with all white walls and figures peering at her.
Well, Sport, you have the spotlight, and you are baby number one!
It didn’t seem that more activity was required. She squirmed in a warm blanket and closed her eyelids again. There seemed to be comfort coming from the arms holding her, and then came the thing some called a crib. The arms of the little bed were not warm; she was in a tiny cell.
Better figure out what life is like. This is kinda strange from where I have been!
A murmur of voices surrounded her, clearer than those she had heard before, but she didn’t know the language. Soft booties on her feet (what are those things attached to me?) and then the warm cover of a blanket. She felt comfy. She learned later that it was November, but her primal sense of time was a season of lifting, bouncing and hearing strange roars. No angels had prepared her for the chill and noise.
What have I gotten into? she wondered, as her brain tried to bridge the past with now. Sirens and town noises accompanied her ride to a different white environment. It smelled good. Sport fell asleep on her third day of emergence into the new world, then followed awakening to more sounds and voices and peering faces. There came a needle to make her feel good.
Woops! No, not so good. This sensation of feeling on earth could have unpleasantness that she had not experienced before.
There was a blur of time, and suddenly they said two years had passed. The interval seemed like a nothingness between the needle prick and the wetness of an animal tongue. That came accompanied by a whiny singing and whimpering. The puppy licked her fingers and discovered her tears. Sometimes she almost recalled an image of brightly covered vegetation and fragrant, thick air, but she couldn't hold on to it. She didn't think that it belonged to the two-year interval period. It seemed more a near-glimpse of someplace before her time, before her emergence on earth.
After the puppy appeared a loving freckled-faced person with red hair. Sport wondered, Maybe I belong to him? He kissed her, and what was that warm touch of the lips? A nice sensation, and a first memory to pack away of her grandfather. Then smiled a pretty woman with long black hair. Reaching down from her white quilts, she accepted Sport from a figure in a white uniform. Lifting Sport to the bed, the pretty woman smiled and stroked her hand. Again came a kiss of warm belonging. This was the beautiful angel, Grandma. She felt like she knew this family from before.
The noise of cars chugging down the street soon became replaced by a sudden quiet except for the sound of the wind in the tall Australian pine. Well, that’s what she was told it was when later she admired it stretching toward the sky.
A time skip, and then…
An explosion! A scream, and all of them raced down the hall, away from Sport. They hurried in a panic to a dark place that suddenly blazed with red light. The maid had poured kerosene on the coal embers to light the furnace, and Sport’s grandfather had rushed into the blaze to extinguish the fire and save the house. Sport’s next memories were the sounds of grieving; a loud sadness that terrified her. Her puppy, the Newfie, began with her at that time the deep bond of friendship that lasted years. She and the dog stayed together. His friendship carried her past the silence of the parlor into the days ahead and scents of flowers. That explosion had taken her cherished grandfather away from her. No more the cuddling in his lap as he sang. Sport felt another skip of time, and then a strange silence permeated the huge colonial home in the country in a period of more flowers and flooding tears. Grandma was gone too!
Eventually after these two heartbreaks, a closet of short time held happiness and play. The doll arrived. She had black hair, brown eyes and made a lot of noise. Sport was told that this was her new baby sister. There had been no warning that she was going to have a new playmate. The other dolls had been quiet and had only opened and shut their eyes. However, this new item could cry and wiggle. Sport was assigned to watch the little sleeping burden and to call when it opened its eyes. Mother had never given her a task like that with her dolls or with Lassie, her Newfie. So, while baby sister snoozed in her crib in the afternoons in the west room, Sport cuddled Lassie, and he rested his head upon her.
Wow, this life is getting busier!
And then one day the tall handsome man, her father, came and took her puppy away. Why couldn’t Lassie stay?
A deep empty feeling wiggled its way into Sport’s chest, forming a lump of emotional longing and loss that seeped into all of her tiny molecular cells. In her memory, she coped by becoming a time traveler.
Her little sister would sit all fluffy and pretty in the swing. Once, Sport got to push her, and with every return, Sport would send her a little higher. The pretty pink dress went flying right out of the swing. A crying little sister in flight; a crying Sport in punishment. There seemed to be a sentence of not belonging. Sport cried herself to sleep, and a closet of darkness engulfed her like the night outside her window. No stars to cheer her weary red eyes.
Then one Sunday when the scent of lilacs surfed a southern breeze, Sport’s daddy said, “Let’s go for a walk in the orchard.” They walked from the front porch through the little gate just beyond the end of the driveway. They walked past the chicken breeder houses where the sounds of little chicks crept through the screens. The meandering stream was a welcome surprise as this was her first introduction to the orchard. The grass in the orchard tickled Sport’s legs as she trotted beside her father. She gasped in wonder at the apple trees. Are they for climbing? Farther along came the three large cherry trees. Wow, they look good for climbing too!
Their walk brought them to a little fairyland heaven so undisturbed that it was only shared with a floor of purple violets. There they found a waiting log for sitting and resting. Conversations were rare for this tall handsome man, her Daddy. He said, “It’s here in the spring that the Indians used to come and get their water.” There was a softness in his voice, almost a celestial reverence for an earlier time. For Sport, fascinated by the violets and the sounds of the bubbling spring, came a mind-searching question: Who were these people, and did they have children who played in the soft green moss?
Jumping for joy, Sport bolted away from her Daddy and leapt across the stream and ended with wet feet and wet dress. What will Mother say? Just yesterday her mother had warned her about wearing five dresses in one day. That was just too many. Her mother had washed the dresses by hand in a tub on the back porch, and then they looked pretty blowing in the Saturday breeze. But there were other dress temptations: The spring chicks were so fluffy yellow, and they loved to cuddle in her lap. Sport would stroke their fuzz. She found their little chirps so endearing. Well, another dress today, but not really that dirty!
Everyone, even the live-in nurse, Georgia, tried to take care of Sport and little sister. Georgia always went up and down the back stairs to a room never explored by Sport. Sometime I will, she thought. When Sport had a pounding, heart-beat earache, the doctor came from town to see her. Through the pain and fever she heard him murmur, “We’ll have to operate here. Georgia will hold her tight.” A strange lump behind Sport’s left ear was causing the pain. Numbness and silence were the results after the doctor lanced the lump, installed a bandage, and left the old house. Later the throbbing pain gave way to healing, leaving only a tiny scar behind the ear as a reminder.
She began to realize that Daddy was away a lot. What now? Breakfast was never spent with all of them together: Daddy, Mother, Georgia, little sister and Sport. Sport learned to play with her little two-year-old sister. They loved to make mud pies on the big stone step that introduced the walk up to the porch. The stone had strange shapes, like ripples of water.
What fun! But a question insisted in Sport’s mind: why were these strange and beautiful shapes there? Mother explained that during the Glacial Age the lines were carved by ice. They were called glacial grooves. Wow!
The farm was huge. It had a towering hill running along the skyline beyond the barn bank. She later learned another geology lesson, that she was living on the very edge of mountains pushed up to form the Appalachian Plateau.
Lassie sometimes joined the playmates, but usually she was up in the barn as governess of the grain bin, hay loft and pigeons. Sport overheard her parents say, “We can’t let her out, as people will think she is a black bear. Besides, we don’t want any unexpected puppies.” What? What does that mean? It turned out to be Sport’s first lesson about sex. Sport realized that interesting lessons often came from listening to conversations that little ears perhaps were not supposed to hear. In their elegant home, they were living somewhat a Victorian lifestyle, Sport later mused.
When Auntie came to visit with Sport’s two little girl cousins, wisps of words created intrigues sometimes. Their family lived in town in a little white house. Sport questioned the gorgeous woodwork in her house. Why were there large columns that seemed to melt into the casing and flow like a wooden ripple? She learned that skilled carpenters from England had built the house. That made her wonder about her great-grandfather’s house. How many had come (and from where) to build it? Oh breathless wonder when a leak in family history revealed that their farm was a land grant from the King! Ancestors: A big word from a far country, and the builders had arrived from Scotland and Ireland!
Sport wondered if a strange place called “school” might tell her more. Well, five years old was coming. She found out that she would go there in the big yellow egg carton she had seen. She did know about eggs. There were bunches of eggs in cages in their basement. Then along came the peeping surprises. No wonder Sport loved the chicks! This meant, of course, several dresses would always be hanging on the clothesline connecting the rambling porch and the maple tree.
Just so much to learn. Cousins up on the hill came to visit and ask if they could take Sport to see the high school. High school must mean that it’s high off the ground. When they arrived, there were big cement steps climbing up, and she was out of breath. (Sure enough, guessing was right.) The hallway became crowded after the sudden ringing of a bell, and kids were racing down the steps. Her cousins grabbed Sport’s hand, and they ran pulling her. She felt the warmth of flesh as she brushed the big kids’ legs. Sport’s sensitive ears rang as long as the bell. It was a real fire. Outside, they ended up on a big field and down over the slope was a creek. Sport wondered if this strange place was for her. But then the swings and teeter-tot looked inviting. Maybe not so bad, after all.
September brought the egg carton to her driveway. She struggled to ascend the steps at its doors. The driver seemed like an old friend. He knew her mom. They had gone to school together. His warm hand engulfed Sport’s trembling one and melted her fear. She caught the smell of gasoline as the bus (now its real name and purpose were known) left the gravel driveway. Sport saw her apple and cherry trees disappearing.
Up another gravel lane – kind of narrow for such a big bus – and it made stops for a few kids along the way to the village. Her cousins led Sport to a strange room. She was placed in the back row of desks. Sport was tall for her age, and the teacher must have arranged the students’ seat assignments by height. But Sport couldn’t see the black thing up front, and she had to stand up to see whatever those odd shapes were. This is not so great, after all. Colorful, pretty shapes lined the rim around the ceiling. Those turned out to be letter shapes.
A little reassurance came in a piece of paper and a pencil. She got to draw these “letter people.” But erasing her reverie, the teacher, all plump in her long dress, gave the sixteen students a hard lesson. She said, “See Dick! See Jane!” Sport had no clue who Dick and Jane were. Lessons in reading became more of, “See the dog run!” The pictures were the clues to deciphering the strange word forms. Ouch! But, having learned to be a good listener, Sport just plum memorized the entire book. And the second book as well. The dog was running faster now. At the end of the book, there was a list of words without pictures. That complicated things.
The teacher wasn’t happy with Sport’s performance. She sent her home with homework to learn all those alien word forms. Daddy was upset. Mother was upset, too. They were paying for Sport to go to school, but now they had to teach her how to read. That must have been a hidden challenge, because years later Sport learned that her mother had to quit school at the end of sixth grade. Daddy had done slightly better: he had to leave seventh grade.
Somehow the reading obstacle got overcome, but Sport was still sitting in the back row of seats. This didn’t give joy, because she had to sit on the edge of her seat to see the board in order to discern the teacher’s lettering on it. But then she was scolded in front of her classmates not to stand up or sit on the edge of her seat.
Tears welled and were cascading down Sport’s face. In the dark corridor outside the classroom a man approached with outstretched hand. Maybe he will understand! He lifted his hand, but it didn’t look like the bus driver’s hand. Suddenly he twisted Sport around like a little merry-go-round and paddled her for her classroom behavior. Oh, this hurt because it drilled right into the very core of Sport’s being. And worse, there was a promise of another whipping to come at home.
But first grade didn’t end just with that indignity. Clouds seemed to press in on Sport as new learning accumulated. The teacher believed in teaching with visible objects. The first was a shoestring. That was easy, just a little hard to form the tie and hold in place. “Practice makes perfect,” says the teacher. Buttons also were no problem.
But then came the Friday morning lesson, a zipper. The teacher showed one, and the steel-tooth meshing looked like jaws. She had never noticed one before, so at home the assignment was to find a zipper. That was not so easy, as it wasn’t in Mother’s sewing basket or her wet washed clothes.
That evening Daddy came home. After dinner, he did a rare thing and said, “Sport, come sit on my lap and tell me about school.” This was during a time when Sport was still learning those hard words with no pictures at the end of the book. Out of the blue, Sport spotted Daddy’s zipper, and she saw that it would go down like the teacher had shown them. She could do her assignment! Her quick fingers attached to her homework in delight. But suddenly there was a shout of rejection, and she was dumped to the floor. What had she done wrong? Tears ensued, and there were no longer loving hands for her that night. First grade had become a punishment. What would second grade give?
An art teacher was teaching them about colors and water. What fun to discover that colors didn’t have to be contained in a coloring box! Sport poured her little soul into this new-found expression of art. Maybe this was hers to enjoy! The little blue lunch box had lost its fascination. These lessons went smoothly, and experimentation was Sport’s little joy. Reading was still a chore.
At home, new wall paper had met little eager hands, and she was allowed an after-school brush with the color pictures on the wall. She got to help finish the last by smoothing the bubbles and pasting on the wall. What a fun thing! Before dinner, her parents went to the barn to finish the milking. Little sister was playing on the kitchen carpet. Sport got a little pan of water and fished her fingers through the liquid. She made a splash on the wallpaper of apples, peaches, pears and grapes. These had become dull in the late afternoon. Oh, Mommy and Daddy will be so proud of me, making them all bright again! Splish, splash, a high fling, and even the ceiling seemed to be laughing! Art was a love that Sport had found in the kitchen wallpaper. Her childhood glee was complete.
Having finished the chores, her tired parents came in with the warm cow milk ready for cooling. They were met with an all-wet Sport, a messy floor and the wallpaper laughing in beautiful colors. Sport was about to get a lesson in big words. “You’ve lost your mind!” her parents screamed, and out came the leather shaving belt from behind the door. Dad’s lashing penetrated through her flesh right into Sport’s soul. This was much worse than the paddling at school or any at home before. In an instant, a giant stroke of anger changed everything. Sport cried herself to sleep alone that night. She had received a big taste of life, and now she hated milk. It curdled her stomach like cottage cheese. Yuck!
Wow, country-school lessons and home-school lessons were meshing to forge a more strong-willed Sport.
Reading came easier in second grade, and then writing was another tool to learn. A German handwriting teacher taught the method that everyone should be able to print with a penny on top of their hand. When pennies fell to the floor, it meant a chide as she walked the room with a ruler. Pennies abounded on the hardwood second-grade floor, while up in front of the classroom George Washington and Abraham Lincoln watched. They never smiled approval of the writing tasks.
Recess was not easy on the bundled up cold days. The swings were for the big kids, and they flew so high. Sport had a jolting memory of little sister in aerial flight. She raced for the sliding board, but its cold steel slide didn’t feel like a good choice.
Oh, the merry-go-round had kids to play with! Someone lifted her up to it, but as it went faster and faster, Sport felt a tummy urge to leave it all behind. She wanted to get off this laughing, funny, whirling machine that others were loving. When she attempted to jump off, her leg got caught, and she got dragged in cold sand a few whirls as others tried to stop it. She had a red, dripping gash in her right leg, not something soon to forget.
The playground seemed more like a grim ground to Sport, so in a few days at recess she started to walk toward the village's tall lamps. She got all the way to the bridge, but she saw that the water was all red like the blood from the merry-go-round misadventure. A teacher came to get Sport, the little runaway. But it wasn’t running away! It was explaining!
Her parents were horrified by the mortuary doing the dead man’s drop in the river and by Sport’s behavior which had led her there.
That night, Sport's upset stomach shot bands of pain that kept her awake into the small hours. But as the silence of the pre-dawn calmed the countryside, Sport released the anxieties that had stoked the pains. She drifted then into a sleep that felt like dreaming awake. She saw a city of silos surrounded by vast fields of waving grains and a sunrise that lit up an ocean-green sky. A young boy appeared and spoke to her and told her his name was Tommy. When she awoke in the morning, she could barely hold these images in her mind.
Section One: Ascent
Chapter 1: Sport’s Alien Fantasy
Sport valued her own thoughts and feelings, and she listened to her inner messages. Her heart named her sometimes and called her, "Messenger.” Her mind grasped this meaning of self. She came to a new feeling of seeking a special place where she felt understood, recognized and loved.
She intuited that she was a unique person concealed behind a thin, fragile veil of sensitivity rarely produced on planet earth. She didn't know why, but she would find out. From the deep of her, an inner silence sang, released not with lips but with sensors from an indwelling, creative foreign spirit. This other life source came flowing from her in a river of expression. When Sport felt it, she wanted to share it. She favored an advice to others: Inhale the deep wonder of the secret unfolding. In wondering, the universe shares mystery with you!
Sport’s own niche of abilities began to open. She found new views of the world. She saw moonlight as pale as the blue gown of early morning’s touch. It was a trace of light, but with a wonderfully haunting aura that transformed everything in the world. The beauty of her nights lied embraced in the peace of crickets’ choruses. Moments blended harmoniously. She sometimes felt balanced on a tip of time on some frail and fragile planet. She had an urging desire to be transported back before the beginning of time when she would know all secrets hidden from memory’s vaults and eyes' pleading dances. Sport would seek her senses, keen for clues to understanding the karmic past. She knew that it unwinds in the present, and she was always fascinated by its mysteries in the today!
She would wonder, “How will tomorrow allow itself to be seen and remembered?” She looked ahead into a grey area of life, a remnant of the faint twilight of the past. Sport would close her eyes in deep thought and meditation. Motionless. Quiet. One looking at her then would see her countenance and understand the lovely face that laughed through eyes and mouth in unison. She cared deeply for humanity whom she thought of as “dear people.”
Sometimes, in deep meditation, she took herself to another world. She fancied that she constructed it in her imagination, but the truth that this came so easily to her nagged her consciousness. She liked to meet the people of the other world, and she delighted when one would become her partner for the evening. Often, she sat with a special one of her friends under evening skies of changing colors. He was a handsome young man who liked to look at her. Sport knew that she was in love with him because his gaze enraptured her and she felt that she might not draw her next breath. When this became too intense for Sport, she would select another friend to sit beside on the next visit.
The special one told her that his name was Tommy. He could be enthusiastically chatty, and he liked to regale Sport with his tales of life in silo cities. But one evening, Sport wanted to see him from afar, just to watch him and admire him furtively. She caught him when he was talking with a friend about her! She sat still as a grassland rabbit when humans walked near. Tommy was explaining to his friend:
"These are things that Sport tells me while I look at her. She is so beautiful that I cannot remove my eyes! There is a halo of light that bends under her eyelids. She sees a new dimension. It is a gift from the deep past, arriving from a time-distance of light years. The light changes shapes. Sport perceives a ball, then a roadway. She feels as if she is in a dream, and she sees ladders of extension. The clouds separate and make new forms. An island rises to its height. A steppingstone pathway of light illuminates the way for its newcomer. She makes her way through ice crystals, past castles of miniature design, and takes in the sky’s created jewelry.
"All these pictures that she sees: Sport measures them in units of beauty as they trace memories upon her heart. She says her video mind retains everything in indelible technicolor. I see her face is aglow with the gentleness that blesses her, but her gentleness is also the boundlessness of her strength.
"Once she spoke about her birth like this: 'The beauty of the heavens is swallowed by tiny forceps. I don't want to go. My divergent mind clings to the sights of misty clouds seeking the remaining light. Is that another moon, or native lore, changing myths, thoughts, or seasons seen in translucent light? Just another hour, please.
"Clouds in the heavens become a mirror that reflects the loveliness of Sport and her yearning. She remains in the quiet place, as if she were sitting in distant mountains that were her private haven for tuning in to the main channel of purpose. What is this purpose? Where is this place? she wonders. Sport sees very few seeking to understand contentment. They miss a peace unbent by human hands. They attempt to erase great discords of life.