July 16, 2014 Wednesday…. last day of 72nd spin around the sun…
Who was it who said the best writing comes when he, Billy Collins? has nothing, no plan, no idea, no objective or focus…just sits down and sees what emerges… Eccomi. Ahora, ici…
Make of it all what you will… Do leap imaginatively, dear ones, to follow association, the turbid and pacific flowing of mind. Anyone home to follow the bouncing ball? To whom, for whom am I writing this? Journal yes, but as well, want to leave a trail, not just slug slime…a report…this is where I’ve been, what I’ve seen or rather what I saw and noted, what registered, struck a chord, signified. I’ve been principally, singularly, a solitaire, so if allusions to writ show up, it’s because reading is what I’ve done, mainly, before this fit of Carpe Diem, Live life to the fullest,has had its way with me and alas that’s all that has, we confess (me myself and I…the Heckle Jeckle and Jive sorellas).
“Who,” asks Psyche,”is sitting in my chair ?
Others? I have had so much homework to do to come up from under to level, integral, whole, which more or less, more and less, I am… rich in friendship, open to love.
Also accompanying and keeping track are the voices of wisdom. ( Scusi: while I was seeking le mot juste in the word horde heap of possibilities, pardon my meta etcetera, I lost track of what it was the wise would counsel). Oh yes…being present and paying attention…I can only surmise, feeling a bit embarrassed for having forgotten what I was saying or alluding to, having fallen short of perfect as is… and why, by the by, the injunction, to effortlessly utter as a tree utters twigs? Because,she opined, we must mature, find our niche,no more or less, to synch with the fulsome beauty and harmony and interconnectedness of all that is…
Be it known, we are sickened by war. I just want us to not only get along, but to evolve so that we can and must, as a given, to sing the songs of get along, and, as we did when kids, out of consideration for the others, for the good of the whole, to stop pooping in our pants.
The impediments to growth and maturation, healing and thriving, are obstacles morphing to opportunities on the road of trials, the gauntlet of necessary conditions, facts to be faced, the realm of what is, the whole megillah: the good, the bad, and eek, i don’t want to know… seen and experienced….so, how you say, we go on, by learning from experience.
My current personal afflictions are discouragement ( If I’m so smart, why aint I rich and if they’re so rich, why aint they smart?) and impatience which is, sigh, jejeune, the two year old foot stamping insistence…I waaaaaaaaannnnnnnntttttt ( don’t waaaaaannntttt) NOW ow ow ow ow….heavy on the reverb….the slime trail, the wake of consequence….
ah yes the antibodies of trial and error and a learning curve, for we are, je pense, educatable. WELL THEN….and I am thinking of us would be Sapients and our maladies…
Rx: a Universal Yom Kippur…to contemplate, own, and atone…let go…release all the log-jammed energy, forgive everyone for everything
and then onto the Feasting, for Pete phuque sake…
Here’s to maturation, the fullness of being and happily singing the songs of the living universe….and so begin again, Finnegan, to record our saying doing and being here on Terra Firmish…
Onward and Tally ho!
Kindness and Civility
In our small world, we don’t always agree on the best course of action. Previously, I’ve lobbied for natural priorities, like giving up our bus seats for the infirm, encumbered, parents with kids. But it’s not always so clear. To live together harmoniously, despite all our differences, we need civility and kindness arising from fellow feeling as a priority.
Enlightened people know this.
So much hinges on our cultural bents and biases. Because there is a wide range of disparate assumptions, views, values, beliefs, expectations and priorities, let alone individual wants and needs, access to accurate information, the ability to assess, question, and understand where others are coming from, it’s no wonder we keep bumping into each another, not perceiving that our misunderstandings arise from not having a common denominator.
In the culture of community, the bottom line is not fiscal
impact, but the well being and fellow feeling of its members. Together we thrive, getting by with a little help from our friends. In the culture of corporate America, it’s me first and big bucks. What happens when cultural values collide? If we apply the business bottom line to community and academic life, as if applying the rules of bakery to medicine, we have a mess. No. Don’t put patients in the oven at 350.
Interestingly, enlightened businesses are incorporating community values by profit sharing and respecting rather than commodifying and exploiting employees and customers.
This is a new era, new century… I’d say the women’s century. Time to realign and embrace what supports the ongoing well being of watershed, biosphere and all denizens. Mercy as well as justice, grace as well as power. Does anyone still consider this idealistic, hence unrealistic? Look at the operation of systems. In an ideal state, a car functions as it was
meant to and there’s nothing unrealistic about that. Of course things break down, wear out, become obsolete. They always do. Our work is in repair, in rising to occasions, members of the human and planetary community, not mere consumers,top or under dog. Thank you, Darwin. Onward.
So much languishes, huddles, lounges, basks in the lost sock warp… not just the missing socks from the dryer, but essential, hah! things, thoughts, places, people… that won’t stay put where I can find them. Who knows what they’re up to, those escapees, those naughty, wild puppies, roaming etheric streets, free from human constraint and scripted obedience: stay! Refusing to stay! Gone missing: words phrases whole lines from poems I once knew by heart; beloved songs– first the words and then the melodies; names of friends, people I’ve known for thirty years I meet at the post office and we smile and exchange neighborly pleasantries, filling up the moments until the lights go on and we remember each other’s of course, how could I forget? name; and in my classroom I refuse embarrassment when I can’t recall the particulars of what I profess, which could be construed as not knowing– book titles, authors, characters, times and places, settings and plots. I hold up the self mocking mask of the good natured absent minded, still articulate, but ditzy professor. I say the information is hung up at a traffic light in Petaluma, or, my favorite refuge, we have data; we don’t have access.
Memory is now a sieve, more like a colander. And we all have our reasons and explanations: too much in the memory bank…the drawers stick and there’s no WD40, like water overflowing the vessel, too many onions for the basket…as if the brain hadn’t capacity. How much grey matter is waiting in the wings at the ready to receive the footprints of our migrations and discoveries? Lots, honey, lots. Well, ok, because of all that smoke in the days of rock and roll, not that we’re not still dancing. Stress, then, and preoccupation… my mind footsore and heart sore, my sleep troubled in time of war. I grieve for friends lost, gone by neglect, product of my nomadic inclinations, my longstanding habit of setting up camp, inviting kindred spirits to sit at my table, to take warmth from my hearth, then packing up the 10,000 things and moving on. And lost through the last breath those beloved whom I would not have left, who could not stay.
Friends keep so much of who we are, remember what we cannot even remember we’ve forgotten and carry for us what we cannot carry. My late great goomba, Ed Halley, bore witness to our glory days in Marshall in the 70’s where I had been fortuitously summoned from the endless winters and cold sap of Vermont to cook at the Tavern. A while ago we were pining for the good old days when time was available to fill as we would, when possibilities were possible and gas was cheap. He remembered my menu. I called the locally caught fish and chips fish, Tiburon, knowing how few would have ordered shark. He recalled an incident I had entirely forgotten which restored to me a sense of who I was in exuberant youth, an ebullient feisty young woman whose sardonic proclivities made her name what others have called Caesar or Nicoise, Irving. Salade Irving. One evening a distraught diner called her from the kitchen and pointed to the intoxicated fly staggering through the garlic suffused salad greens on his plate. “What is that?” he demanded. “That,” said she, not missing a beat, “is Irving.”
C’est moi though I barely know her anymore or find her smooth skin and unflappable, unharried disposition under the wrinkled knees and circumstances of a woman of a certain age, a woman who has lived and died a gezillion times, suffering the slings and arrows, fortune’s fool. What gets me, though, the lowest blow, the cruelest joke is that I don’t remember the words to John Lennon’s “In my Life” or Bernstein’s “Tonight” or what’s his name’s “Autumn Leaves.” No, blankety blank, what I do remember is the sappy and insufferable ballad sung by Eddie Fisher.
”First the tide rushes in, plants a kiss on the shore and rolls out to sea and the sea is very still once more.So I rush to your side like the oncoming tide….” Feh!