Time Capsules

I want to start off 2020 with a challenge. Well, I can choose one from any number: my most long-running one would be weight loss – but that’s a ho-hum these days. I’m not my Aunt Vi (whom we described as 5×5) but I’ll no longer strive to shine in hip huggers with a croptop either. I need something more real & perhaps more achievable. My body likes the weight…it’s my brain that scrabbles to a halt mumbling “Wait! Do I really look like that?” But I’m healthy. I walk comfortably. I can bend & move & lift & carry. So if it’s only for the image, perhaps it’s time to just let weight loss go so it really can. Because when I focus on it too much, it overtakes me.

I had a thought this morning of asking what would I place in a time capsule? But will this exercise be a time capsule I’d want to reopen later? Maybe it’s not a time capsule but a time dump of that which no longer serves. What is it about this year I would want to re-address? Friendships, funny events, successes like starting Open Mic & doing stand-up comedy; walking almost every day for seven months; catching moonrise over the notch in the mountains outside; helping host Black Cat Poets on second Sundays… I’d love re-addressing being able to earn my way well, to help others in little/big ways, to find what I need exactly when I need it.

It’s easier to list – and a longer list as well – what I am letting go of. Former friendships which soured for their own unreasons; unsustainable relationships; most of the stupid things I didn’t think were such at the moment. I want to release any feelings of being “picked on” or targeted. I wish I could release judgments about my behaviors when I was wrong which I still find myself twisting crazily to be right about.

If I found a Time Capsule from my future self, what would it contain? Success after success, understanding, more knowledge, less judgment, tones of love & affection, a powerfully grounded belief in my own lovableness, many fewer second thoughts or doubts. Strength of mind, heart, body to continue in a world where there’s so much to disagree upon. (Every generation wants the world to move more slowly & resume some quality it had before. I don’t wish Hershey Bars were still a nickel, but I wish the upcoming generations were not so estranged from what I perceive to be basic & essential points of reality.) But then, I was brought up in the paradigm that “boys will be boys,” etc.

But I also grew up in a time when there were fewer rules, much less assumption of guilt before innocence can be proven, simplicity over that which seems complex but still can be dismantled into essential parts. Since I didn’t have many relatives in the viewfinder, I didn’t hear “when I grew up we…” stories. I kept inside the boundaries set for me just because it didn’t really occur to me that I could escape them with any success. I grew up with a single parent possessing “eyes in the back of her head,” I breathed carefully in the Surveillance State Of Mom before this existed politically out loud. I didn’t worry about Big Brother, but I sure did about what Mom might catch on her radar.

I will think on what is worth saving/continuing. I want to help more, understand my life better, re-establish & deepen my relationship to God, my Hero. I want to love what I write & continue touching others with words. I want to rethink how I live & make a smaller, more loving place in which to dwell in my mind & heart. From that concentration I can once more grow up in the discovery of that which is of true importance: establishing ideals to achieve, deepening my prayer practice, renewing relationships while developing more. I will enjoy filtering out what is not needed, keep from acquiring excess baggage, moving forward in light, tracking time better & believing in & understanding myself more. I like to think I can stand up in “do no harm” in my life & bring about nurturing change.

There is always more room for less fear.

2020: clear vision to us all!




Holidays / Holydays

Like herringbone, the concepts fit into a deepening pattern. Whether we wear it outside depends on the size of the bars, perhaps.

What I read is so different from what I hear in the marketplaces. I understand the concept of Agora now – going among the people to gather their thoughts & reality.

Of course, much of what is spoken is politics today. Once upon a time, I’m sure it was religion. Overall, it might be so much more amenable just to discuss recipes.

I still feel I’d like to solve everyone’s problems, resolve the discussions with “my” enlightenment & encourage polite discourse. My single venture at this resulted in total denial by listeners. “That’s got to be photoshopped.” “He never said that.” Not even a sliver of possibility was allowed. Everyone now follows the media’s aversion to research, I suppose. Yet I’m wiser to opt for speaking to like thinkers – while I can’t help but think how much benefit there would be even in basic courtesy among the rest.

Some while back I read that if the Founding Fathers had to debate the points in the Constitution now, we would have no such document.

Could Jefferson have conceived of WIFI? Washington, computers? I secretly smile when I read Trump “writes letters” to Kim Jong Un & Putin recommends his staffers use typewriters for important information.

What price technology? Does it make truth more reliable? Ah, there’s the age-old rub: What is Truth?

Disillusionment has ever lined the outer limits of speaking beliefs which will not seem to manifest. But now it occupies Center Stage.

If it’s more satisfying to identify as a zebra, well, we live in a time when you can simply do that.

Which leads us back to herringbone.

Shaving Off Sorrow

Take your hands off my philosophy

What do you care if I cannot fall in love with myself anymore?

What can it be to you how alone a human stands when her life transits to Mars? 

When all turns red as a tomato on the shelf where it freezes, where the skin thins to tissue

As the center hardens to rock?

What did I care that your life has turned into a radio

Broadcasting 24/7, unheard in a tin room?

I may never have been what you think I was

That good little Catholic kid from New York Avenue

Growing up in a town as far from New York as geography can take you

What about that skinny kid

A macaroni child with a lazy eye

Uncomfortable with focus, never knowing where to look?

Wearing Buster Browns with corded laces

A blue serge uniform covering bony knees

Chapped lips, always in reach of a book about horses?

Listening to life like a mouse for a cat’s paw

Watching for light not of rods and cones shifting

But divinity descending.

I can take my heart & bang it on a table now. No harm. No foul.

No burning houses with smoking windows to toss it through

It wouldn’t blaze anymore, having become ironwood & char

Unfeeling, unemotional, squeezed out with a rasp.

No matter. I was likely never who I thought I was, yeh?

I brought the best of me to the altar for sacrifice

After the light in the room changed

I found all was turned inside out

And there was nothing inside to pull from

No strength, no love, no shy violet water.

So I can toss it around, a medicine heart

Too heavy to play, too common to breathe

Too full to give away

Too empty to love.

Let’s find something else to do, okay?

Let’s find an afternoon we don’t have to pay for with blood

With dis-chord, let’s paint this Room of the

Unknown Soulmate some other color.

I’m so tired of empty.

Pray me into life: let the sunset squire me to beauty

Unbeknownst to others

Visited by my jaded eyes

Blurred with reading-tears

Coffee cup of empty

Guilt & sorrow my two most constant companions

A new lightbulb in a house afraid of an electric bill

I am naked as an undressed manikin

Featureless as unformed clay

Full of metaphor & simile, meta-for & similar

In the land of the unique.

Yesterday at this time, I was laughing.

Back when I felt important in the world

When I felt like someone wanted me to smile

Like it would be a devastation should I not

Back before the world chained the angel in me

To words I decorate with a pen

Too much cliché does a body no good

I know this is an unoriginal thought

But must voice it, nonetheless.

There was never anyone who loved me but God

And God has to love everybody, just because.

Just sayin’

Listen to me! The broad devourer of having no past

Of never believing much while convinced of it all!

I can wear my shoes on the couch now

No one corrects me.

I can avow a sunset for its beauty

While whispering of dawn to come.

What would I give to not be lonely

To be out of this moment where all feels “emptified”?

Where would I walk were I following my heart?

The dream a wish created vanishes with the color from a sky

I have closed my blinds against.

It is so much safer in the dark.

These words run out ahead, a parallel track

I huffnpuff along, steam rising from my head

Looking down for pennies on the track.

I would not see the angel until I walked into his robes

Nor feel him until the wings wrapt ‘round

Not know of my sorrow til he gave me a handkerchief

I want no direction without holding that leading hand

A little cold from flying…a little coarse from picking off sins

But landed in time to unfold me from my fear,

Scraping with a pearl fingernail at these old scars

Bleeding into tomorrow, staining the day.

The wound clears &, clean, I find a ring of bright new hope

To dance within.

So this is my talent: to wring words from rocks sun-dry & dusty

This world I strive to escape by pulling on a cloak of poetry

Hand-woven, soft & muted of dove-grey

Swirling around the rainsoft boots

I have kicked my life down the road

Now I need to go looking for it again.