LIke a mighty stream

Moomin and I went to the SF MOMA with Minnie today. Moomin made some great comments, snarking at some of Friedlander’s photos, “Did a KID take this or what?” (This specifically about one of the “Letters” series, a photo of an “A” in coiled wire on a grungy wall.) He liked the photos of reflections, especially of trees and koi in a pond in Kyoto. The paper wall with bright colors was good too, and Magritte. It made my heart explode when he looked at Georges Braque painting of the violins and said “That’s so weird! It’s like being in three dimensions!” God… exactly… that is exactly the point. It’s seeing from many perspectives at once! Moomin liked all the San Franciso and Silicon Valley photos by Gabriele Basilico — and I did too.

I thought of Keith Haring and how iconic he was in the late 80s early 90s for me, and liked it that my kid would grow up knowing something about that.

After Minnie left, we went up into Yerba Buena Gardens. Moomin frolicked in the grass, climbed trees, hopped on stones, & then we went through the waterfall, something I have looked forward to doing with him. In museums and at monuments, he always likes to read all the signs and displays, and so I got to hold him on my lap, with the water roaring all around us, in the cool grey cave of deliberate stone, while he read out loud,

No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

Photo by opticallyactive

I hope he will not be satisfied, and that he takes these words to heart. It was a good moment. I knew he was thinking hard. We talked about how powerful water is, how it can knock you off your feet, how it doesn’t stop, like the ocean doesn’t stop. I said that our feelings and our struggle for justice can be like that, for what is right, and fair, and for equality for everyone, and it is little things in every day life, not always big things, like drops of water that will combine to be powerful.

Usually I’m just the benign-neglect mom that says Yes you can have a popsicle and watch another episode of Avatar while I am writing. But sometimes I whip out the preaching, just for a minute!

I am a sucker for monuments and have been known to burst into tears while writing poetry in UN Plaza in front of the statue of Ashurbanipal.


At the top of the ginormous 3 stage ramp we looked down at the waterfall. A guy wearing an “I work for the park” vest walked up to offer to take our photo together! It was so nice of him. I went, “Hey Moomin, come over here, either this nice man is going to steal our camera or it’s picture time” and Moomin cracked up. You can tell the guy was cool too, because he laughed instead of giving me a strange look. A while later he yelled “Hey, you! Mom over there! Do you know there’s a playground?” I didn’t really. He pointed us in the right direction, letting me know there were ramps all the way! I asked him “Hey dude, why are you carrying a plastic plate?” He’s not only a nice urban park ranger; he also does circus tricks, like plate-spinning. Oh, I love San Francisco.

Moomin sat on my lap for the ride down a couple of stories of ramp.

The playground was GLORIOUS. I appreciated the wheelchair access very much. Fuck sand and those goddamned wood chips. I have not been on a playground for a whole year! On this one I could go right under the monkey bars. All the levels of the playground were accessible, so when I was at the top of one of the big ramps, I was still on the playground, still in the middle of a little maze of ramps and bars. Someone obviously built the whole playground with wheels in mind. I was very happy to see it was not “skateboard proofed” either.

If they had thought just a BIT more they would have made one of those rubberized slopes just a little bit less steep and I would have gone ZOOMING DOWN IT. It almost happened, on the south side of the pit, but I chickened out.


wheelie on the playground
It means a lot to me to have this good day of bonding with Moomin after a hard year, as I described earlier in this post:Pain, Disability, and Parenting.

Moomin made friends with a girl who had hot pink cowboy boots and a bold attitude. She started riding him about how to be careful on the bars as they were climbing on the outside of the slides. (Giant two-story slides!) He explained back all the ways that he was careful, and they had a long long conversation back and forth about carefulness and how careful they were until I was about dying with laughter. They also discussed Spiderman vs. Batman, which I was curious to hear but I didn’t want to follow them around the playground too much. Later as they were playing I overheard him demanding her phone number and asking where she lived. Then, he gave her his email.

I am so smooth I followed his example and exchanged emails with the hot pink boots girl’s mom, who gave me her card and seemed a kindred spirit sort of person; academic, literaturey, mentioned women’s studies in breath one. Lo… I got home and she had ALREADY BLOGGED HER DAY.

This caused me to love the Internet so, so hard.

I love you, Internet! I love you, world!

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45 Responses to LIke a mighty stream

  1. thetwinkle says:

    wow – that is very cool!also, moomin looks just like you.

  2. elswhere says:

    I LOVE THIS STORY. So much that I had to write that all in caps, apparently.Also, I think we've been to that playground! Is it near downtown?

  3. Jenny, the Bloggess says:

    I adore this post.We are *so* the same person.Except for the wheelchair part. And the actually doing something cultural with your child. And knowing who Georges Braque is.Okay, really just the "You can have a popsicle if you let me blog for three minutes" part. *sigh* I just depressed myself.

  4. Liz says:

    What a beautiful entry! Lily loved running into you and M. We will have to figure out how to do a long distance playdate.

  5. sadie says:

    Oh, Yeah, I love that whole complex. In the summer it's so nice because of the water play area, among other things. We were just there last weekend checking out the art at the yerba buena center.I love your blog.

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