As I sat here looking at this week's topic, diversions, my free-associatin' brain took me down two paths, poetry and physics. (But what's new? I've both feet on those paths for years now, and it's been an interesting stroll.
One of the most famous lines in poetry uses the word "diverged," and its topic is the heartrending fact that we don't have the time to walk every path that life offers us:
"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood...."
Robert Frost, "The Road Not Taken," 1916.
When confronted with the topic "Diversions," I immediately skipped over to a web page that gave me the full text of this public-domain poem for free. Having barely absorbed it, my brain flitted off to thoughts of my fluid mechanics class, when a discussion of how a stream of water would diverge and recoverge when encountering on obstacle in its path. Much energy could be (and has been) expended in examining how the behavior of that water would differ if it were moving with the turbulence of a river in spring thaw or the smooth, laminar flow of a slow, shallow creek. (Lest your eyes glaze over, this problem is very important to anybody out there who occasionally drives over a bridget.)
Mother, lover, engineer, novelist, musician--I could probably have played any of those roles better if I'd been willing to pick one path and stick to it, but I'm not good at that kind of diversion. I'm not good at letting go of the desire to stroll down all the paths. Perhaps it hasn't been the most peaceful life plan, but it has been interesting. And it ain't over yet.
May all your paths be fascinating and all your diversions be pleasant.