slow fool

pond-staring in colmar, france

If you want to be successful, you’ve got to be smart and speedy, right? Make quick decisions with exceptional intelligence so you can get ahead of the pack. Find a slim opening of amazing opportunity and cannily sneak through it before someone else does. Whatever happens, don’t get left behind.

Pardon me for not being interested.

I find myself more captivated by depth than speed, by discovering rather than knowing, even if it means I never make it to the top of a heap. Yes, for sure, I’m glad all those members of G.U.S.T. (Grown-Up Stealth Torpedoes) are out there, doing what they do, creating lots of things I use and want. But back here where their dust is settling, something quieter remains: we slow, foolish members of P.O.N.D. (Poised Over Natural Depth).

A P.O.N.D. gathering looks something like this … We wander around looking like we have no clue, picking up stones and tracing them with our fingers before tossing them in the pond to make ripples, which we stare at in slack-jawed, unfocused dumbfoundedness. We walk around the pond. Then walk around again. We say “I have no idea” when someone asks us a question. While the sun moves across the sky, we remain in place, breathing in time with our creeping shadow. We make dumb jokes and crack up over things like the funny shape of a stick. Basically, we don’t appear to get much done.

But the pond goes down forever. Aerial views and fly-bys miss its measure. When we do not-much slowly, without knowing, depth opens itself like an underwater scallop shell, revealing the surprise of a hundred blue eyes.

What vision is revealed by not striving?


Patient is another word for slow. Curious and foolish are kin. Curiously patient, we have time to meet and hear the parts of ourselves that chime slowly and beckon us toward wisdom that maybe no one else can hear.

A slow fool is a depth practitioner.

Say slow fool a few times in a row and it starts to sound like soulful.

Be a proud slow fool, patiently curious about your inner life, awash in a sea of possibilities, content to sway. Who knows where the current will carry you.


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6 comments to slow fool

  • Kimberly Stromgren

    Hello dear friend Grace!!

    Oh this post is a treasure. I am having just such a pondering/wandering day and it feels soul filling! I love your poetic voice, your unspoken dumbfoundedness. Brilliant and wonderful–just like you. :)

    • Hey, Kimberly, maybe someday we can ponder/wonder foolishly together somewhere somehow. That’d be fun. We’ll stumble across a bench and sit a spell and see what passes by. Thanks for this report of your day. xoxo

  • Melissa Frykman-Thieme

    Hi Grace,
    Yeah– slow, deep, clear. A wise man asked me to describe myself in three words– three words that would sum me up, put me in perspective, really tell who I am. And guess what? I chose Deep Clear Water.
    This moment, I am reminded that my vision of Deep Clear Water is an awful lot like your vision of a hundred blue eyes. What a lovely view.
    Slow is good, too. Ponding/pondering. I do that as I come in to the ferry dock, watching the deep clear water swirling and bubbling around the pilings. I do that as I walk down my driveway during a rain storm, peering into the mud puddles.
    Good to know that you’re doing some peering too. Peers peering.
    As always, good to hear from you, and best blessings on the publishing of your pieces!!!

    • Ponding/pondering and peers peering. You cause me to grin, Melissa. Bless you for those fun pairings and your other thoughts. It’s been a while since I did that ferry-swriling water-watching meditation/medication (if I can just horn in on your riff there). I’m glad to be reminded of its visual and audio soothings.
      P.S. I have another three words for your essense, in addition to Deep Clear Water … Imaginary Worlds Collaborator (remember that?).

  • My sentiments, exactly, Grace. Thanks for your well-said thoughts, and for sharing the blue-eyed scallops.