Archive | Essays

We Come With Love

IMG_20140408_153830_460Can we go to the lady who likes blue cloths, the young one asked.   And I was taken by surprise as to why he wanted to go.   I asked him why and he looked at me and said because she know-ed things and I want to ask her some questions about stuffs.   And I asked him what kind of questions.

And he looked at me and said, you know, you know.   But I don’t I said and waited.   It is always good to wait.   But there was nothing coming so I asked again why?   And he said that she knows things and she like the blue cloths and those are special.   Why are they special, I asked.   And he said becauuuuusseeee. . . they just are!  Can we go?

And I said get your things.   He was quiet while we were getting there but when we came to the shop he sat still for a minute.   You not mind if we just talk about private things, he asked.   I said,  it was all right with me.   May I listen?   I want you to he said.

We were greeted warmly by the lady of blue cloths and the younger wrapped his arms around her waist.   Good to see you again, she said.   I saw-ed you last night, he said, and you said it was always good to ‘member where you come from.  I think hard all night and I ‘member , he said.  I ‘member.   And I ‘membered you because you teach-ed me about not being ‘fraid of stuffs.  And I know-ed what you said and I know-ed where you were with the blue cloths.  You ‘member where you come from?

Yes,  she said,  I do.   It is a place of great feeling, love that is bigger than anything we know.  It is like a big ocean of love spilling over us and there is nothing to be afraid of.  We can touch this love with our hands and hold it in our arms.   And it will hug us back.   What do you remember?

That is what I ‘member,  he said.   And that is why I not ‘fraid.   I ‘membered and then forgot and I know-ed you would know.   Can I come back and ask again what I forget?  Always, she said,  always come back.

He reached for my hand and I nodded to her.   I not ‘fraid now I ‘member.   We come wit’ love and go to love, too.   Yessssss,  I said and squeezed his hand.

click on the blue cloth to magnify

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One Pilgrim’s Journey

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One Pilgrim’s Journey

In my early years on this pilgrim’s journey,   I would awaken and think through the night’s lessons and get my marching orders for the day.   They were equally important.  One morning though the conclusion was that it truly was a world without end.  But world without end has a magnitude about it that I am now understanding.   I have long said that we go to where we belong;  earned the right to be where the patterns of our days prepared us.  It truly is a universe of no retire.   If gravity and its inhabitants have worn us to a frazzle,  there will be rest,  but there is the new address awaiting.

These worlds do exist.  In this particular world only five senses are used to inhabit it.   But there are other aspects of Being which are not yet ours.   Some people have extra senses that piggy backed on the ones most of us inherit.  There are no skipped grades in any world.  What is ours to do may be different than what the next person has to do,  but there is graduation for all of us.  No need to worry about early exits either.   What is not learned once will be given other chances.  It behooves all of us to learn what we must wherever we are.   The next time may not be as agreeable nor as conducive to easy learning as this Earth is.  And we are held accountable.

Some of us are obsessed with questions others do not give thought to.   They come with faith in their carpetbag.   Faith of necessity is blind otherwise it would not be faith.   Questions would only complicate an already complicated life for some souls.  Whatever framework we have chosen for this world grants us what is necessary to work life through.  But within each rises the question which will turn the individual to the opening of the treasure chest within.   He/She has the key to open it.  And it is the word ‘why?’   That word,’why?’ either starts or closes the journey.

We have our camouflage systems worked out beautifully.   We construct our walls in the mind and do not allow anything disturbing to enter.  Occasionally a crack will appear and we will scurry for the emotional plaster or caulking to seal it.  The one who can no longer pretend the pieces fit the puzzle will begin the process of discovery and his/her journey begins.   They will hear ‘you have to be crazy to do this to yourself’  but they are crazy like a fox.

The roar you hear will be the heaven’s rejoicing that they have ‘a live one’  down there!   Let it be you.

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The Jockey

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In a square inch of soil we were told you will find all the history pertinent to your time and all you need to know in this world concerning all you need to know.   We laughed at the old Teacher and labeled him The Jockey because he was on our backs all the time.  We may have laughed but I for one was out in the hot sun for hours.  As the years took me,  I often thought of the old Teacher and what he tried to teach.  He was an influence in my life in every segment teaching.

How could such a statement have any meaning in this day of technology and economic problems?  How could studying a square inch of soil put me in touch with my roots, with my humanity,  with my self?  I knew my classmates gave more thought to this than they were ready to admit.

Hours spent on hands and knees looking at the lifted square inch wondering how it would answer the questions harbored.  I stared at it and saw nothing but cut off roots.   But on further study  ants appeared with root hairs snaking through.  Questions formed and I wondered out loud if perhaps in Egypt was the same composition?  At some Oasis?   Or was the grass just our hybrid, but might grow elsewhere with root transplanted along with what it was fed,  somewhat like a belief system?  Certain foods,  rituals and customs practiced and honored?

Was this the soil of my childhood and my ancestors?  What were the practices and procedures then?  Transplanted would their grasses grow where I was rooted.?  Would I have difficulty being transplanted with new roots and customs?  One question fed another.   And soon with thoughts of more root systems dusk was near with a chill in the air.   I replaced the soil as we had been taught and looked to the night with a new moon arising.

I was very young then but I continued the practice of going out to the fields.  With insatiable curiosity that the Jockey had instilled,  I was  learning new life forms and rituals  which were not only interesting but necessary if peace was to be a fact.  This kernel of knowledge fed not only me but my children also.    When curiosity about the outside world exploded in their lives,  fields became our private yards and weeds noticed and their history unearthed.   Their possibilities were endlessly discussed and often ended up as table decoration.

This led to the study of June bugs and fireflies and how many were needed in a mason jar to read by?  Seeds were planted,  grasses sown and nurtured.  Big and little dippers were sought nightly and moon phases studied.

Root systems, cultures, ancestry all with histories uncovered.   Leading toward philosophies studied,  literature dissected with humanity’s progress followed through baseball statistics, and runners still carrying the message to Garcia.

We pick up smooth stones to find our names on them.  They too have life in slow vibration for ears attuned to them.   Climate changes are our concern with glaciers melting where they should not,  rubber trees no longer grow and some species of birds no longer fly.  The world is our classroom and those unborn our concern.

It is said that when the student is ready the Teacher appears. It is often when we need that one the most to change our lives forever.    My hope is for everyone to have the Jockey who will give that pertinent point to start the journey from even one square inch of soil.   To awaken the questing mind that keeps the curious mind alive.   I was fortunate to have a Teacher who considered his life’s work sacred.   And when I see a child with a scoop of soil and studying it carefully,  I know that child has been truly gifted.

Art by Claudia Hallissey

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C’est Moi, It is I. . . .

Icicles on treesThe underlying factor in these universes is that there is an ethically divine purpose to do good.  We have to because we are born to.  Which is why we clean our doorstep and sweep our sidewalks.  Even if those sidewalks are dirt.  Why we wash our clothes and wash our bodies, even if the wash tub is a creek or a river or a bucket.   We look out for our neighbors and love each other because we are brothers.   We ask to be born because we want to make a difference that counts.

We were told that whatever is loosed on earth is also loosed in heaven and we are the reflection of what is loosed in heaven.  In metaphysical, (meaning physical and cosmic) language and circles, we learn as above so below.

It is to be remembered that the underlying principle of these worlds, of these universes,  the overwhelming ethical premise underlying all worlds is to do good.  No matter the world or planets, it simply Is.  Every thought, every action,  must, must be pulled through our hearts.   The habits of our days shape us into who and what we are.   When our name is called we go to the world our actions and thoughts have prepared us for.   It has ever been thus.

There will be those waiting for us and they will pull us across as we shout,  c’est moi,  it is I.   Will the song of our days be a beautiful song?   Our melody will linger long so let us not be afraid and work in harmony.

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The Night Sounds

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Not quite 50 when I wrote the following one Saturday night in a September journal entry.

 

The window is open where I sit and it is black outdoors.   The dampness is coming in and I am almost transported to my youth and it is once again life on The Farm.   The crickets are making their own kind of noise, certainly peculiar to crickets but the night itself has its own kind of sound.   Does stillness have its own sound and can you hear it?  The muffle of the daylight brings on the darkness and it pulsates with its own vitality.   I wish I had the words to tell it.  It is almost as if I can flow right through the screen and become a part of the night and disappear into it.  With not even a ripple to disturb the night.   The poem said it long ago that somewhere the night has a thousand songs waiting to be sung.   But never enough time.   Never enough time.

Is there a point in life where if you lived just one day longer,  you would find a difference in your perspective and it would convince you that your entire life had been lived with the incorrect premises?  I wonder. . . . .And what would that do to you?   Would that one day more convince you that it was not necessary to repeat another life or make you more determined to come back to earth and try again?   And who has the time in physical life to take on the enormous task of searching for the gods?  Can you squeeze it in between the work life and home life and million details of just plain living that boggle the mind?   Or will you find it at 11 o’clock on Sunday morning?  The search is all encompassing and consuming for those of that persuasion.  It amazes me that there are those who give it no thought at all.  Can you live a life without searching for some meaning, any meaning?  Or is it enough simply to get through it?  I wonder what sort of contracts are written before birth to enable one to move through earth life with no complications.   Some ground rules must be laid and if  so, by whom.   Except no doubt by the people involved.

(As the mother of 3  I innately knew and told them as often as I could and always on birthdays that I am glad they chose me as their mother because I chose them.  And it was a ready answer for the often adolescent retort which invariably stated. . . .I didn’t ask to be born!     Ahhhhh but you did!)

Photo by Joshua Hallissey
click on photo to magnify

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The Gold That Shows

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My friends thought I was obsessed with connecting the dots.   This is the process by which I see an event and see its consequences while the event incubates.  I have a lifetime behind me where I was a veritable Sherlock.   They were unable to see the connections between people or events even when pointed out.

I find the most disconcerting phrase being ‘live in the moment.’  Everything is in the  moment.   Whether it is love, (STD’s or who will take care of the baby disregarded) or a war being declared.  These things are real but their roots are not in the moment but in the many yesterdays.   The moment has no meaning without a yesterday.   If we have no yesterday,  today is sterile, impotent,  without meaning.   It is  a well thought out and lived in yesterday that gives this moment its meaning.   Why do I press this?   If our yesterday was not filled with events that were thought filled,  that were fulfilled,  then yesterday will make this moment null and void.  And those who see dots and make connections are sometimes quick to take advantage of those who do not.

Socrates was filled with advice about putting meaning into our days.   He said that the unexamined life is not worth living.   It is only by remembering the past and chasing our memories that we begin to know who we are and from where we come.  It is only by understanding the past that the present,  the now,  will not have to repeat the past.

Oftentimes and too often it seems,  when it comes to our Earth’s resources,  we mortgage our children’s futures.   We must sit and think about the past,  not only ours but our ancestors.   We must take time to reflect on our behavior and how we contribute to our problems as well as the Earth’s.  What can we do to make the present more commendable?   We make our present richer when we glean from the past those lessons and times that are good memories.   And we learn from the bitter failures what we do not wish to repeat.   Let us thoughtfully include them.   The present moment only has meaning because of what we bring to it.   And if we find our Now empty,  it is best we look within.   We take who we are into tomorrow and find we have within us basis for a future with meaning because we root our present.

We are the gold that shows.

Double click on the photo.   This plaque was a gift from my sister who read The Last Bird Sings and surprised me with this gift.   She read the first manuscript and this impressed her thinking.  It has much meaning for me.

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Where Is Safe?

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May I ask you a question?   He was sitting at the window and looking out as if he could will the sun to come out so he could play outdoors.   Why you ask?   Because I want you to know that if you don’t want to answer,  you can say no to me.   But you always answer my question and never say no,  he said.   I woun’t say no to you,  he said.   I maybe not know the answer but I woun’t say no.   I tried to frame my question simply.

I wonder, I said, if you can remember what it was like before you came here to live.   I waited.   He continued looking at me and I thought past me and then asked,  which time before?   I drew breath and then said the one you remember best.   And he smiled at me and said the one where we were together before?   Where was that I asked.   He said, you know,  you know.   That’s why I choosed you this time.   We were bestest friends and I knowed how much you could help because we were bestest friends.

Where was that I asked again.   He said in that cold place where we had to hold hands so our fingers could be warm.   Who was there with us I asked and he searched my face.   He was reading me I thought and then wondered why.  He said it was a hard time and this time would be better.   Why was it a hard time I asked and he said because our bodies were broked and sick.   This time he said we are not broke so we can go outside and play.   We were too old and broked last time and the cold hurt when we breathhhhddd.   How do you remember that I asked and why do you remember.

Because here I can breathhhedddd and it don’ hurt.   My throat burn in that place when things ‘ploded  ’cause they fighted all the time.  You ‘member he said, you ‘member.   And he became silent and his eyes clouded.   And he said,  we say to each other,  never  ‘gain,   never  ‘gain.  I pulled him to me and hugged him and said never again.   We will try to stay where it doesn’t hurt to breathe.   And I wished I could promise there would always be a place where it didn’t hurt to breathe,  but I could not make that promise.   For this time only,  I could hug him and keep him where the air did not burn his throat.  But how long before all places would be safe?

Until life in all forms vowed not to inflict such terror in worlds where to draw breath just to live would hurt,  we would continue to work.  That is a promise.

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Hidden Lessons

Barn Scene - DetailFrom a journal entry September 25, 2000. . . . .”I meant to come down and write this story last week when it happened but again I did not.   Whether I am becoming lazy or whether just tired,  I don’t know.   But when I was unloading the car of groceries in front of the house,  a car came by with a young woman in it.   She pulled up in front of the house next door and parked.   She got out of the car and approached me with a slip of paper.   She was looking for a street address which she had written on it.   I told her this was the seven hundred block and she would do well to go down the next block to the East.  She was a little thing,  probably in her thirties or so and she said in broken English that she had come to a garage sale a few days ago and when she got home she realized that she did not pay the woman enough for whatever she bought.

I said well,  that is awfully good of you to come back with your money and I know the woman would appreciate this act of honesty.   No,  no,  she said,  my God sees me.   My God sees me.   And  that is why she was coming back.  I said,  thank you,  thank you.   For I had fueled my body with resentment to get my errands done and had forgotten momentarily what I was all about.   I was grateful to be reminded that when I am at a loss for a good reason to do things,  the one reason should be reason enough.   My God sees me.

I brought the groceries into the house and was coming out to put the car away.   I saw a car slow down in front of me and the window slid down.    It was the young woman from before and she said thank you to me again for she had found the woman and returned the money.   No,  I said,  thank you.  She smiled and waved herself away.    I think about her and can see that face with her scarf binding her hair and the smile crumpling a dignified demeanor.   And I am grateful again for being reminded that even with feelings not seen by the outside world,  my God sees me.   Anything that corrodes my Spirit needs to be worked on immediately.”

(And today with so much flooding our circuitry,  it is easy to forget the basic lessons.   I am grateful for the written word.)

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Differing Perspectives

Years ago I found the word pewambic on a note on my bedside table.   I called a friend and asked her if she was familiar with the word.   She thought it had something to do with pottery.   I told her that in a dream snippet,  I was on my haunches and doing something in front of me.   I have since learned about the Native Americans of the Pewabic tribe (correct spelling) for whom pottery in the Midwest was named and I also learned that when dreaming I visit alternate realities.   My study has taught me that all worlds are simultaneous.  Even now I find my thoughts stuttering because though I know this is so for my memos bear me out, for all of us to live peacefully we must give space to different perspectives, i.e. what a person sees.

Here I step aside and the Teachers’ notes take over.   “You were working with the hands on a piece of pottery that stemmed from the area where you were.   The ancient civilizations were using the tiles borrowed from the more modern ones.   You were seen working with the tiles and with the pottery from a distant past.   The materials were not as ancient as you depict simply because they were of borrowed times.   When we speak of borrowed times we say that within the past and present or within the past and future, there is a melding that defies the linear description common to where you are.   If for instance you took the computer to another time, it would not have the functions,  but the rudiments would be the same.   The ability to work with the hands would be utilized but the time differential would be such that the illusions would be different, i.e. the materials.

The seepage, (bleed through from other times) would be there in the form of the machine.  What presents so much difficulty is your kaleidoscopic view bringing into focus bits and pieces of several dimensions (perspectives).  You can utilize this state by taking a more comprehensive look with eyes that work a bit differently.   It would seem from a distance to be all of a piece but what is really created is a new dimension.   What you see are many dimensions and the differing perspectives enhances the ability of others to understand those things needing a larger premise.”

And I say only if others are willing to give time to listen and space to be.   It is not easy when what you see is different than what others see.   We cannot climb behind an other’s eyes to see the world.   The child or adult in back of you,  in front or to the side of you is seeing our world perhaps differently.   Inside differences are sometimes harder to live with than outside differences.   As one wise child said,  ‘some of us have birth marks on the inside and some on the outside.’   We must listen to their words.   We must allow space for other perspectives because we don’t grow in understanding unless we draw a larger circle to include those who are different.

We must broaden our premises if we and our planet are to survive.

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Do You Hear?

IMG_20140108_134901_738 Do I have more minutes to finish?   There was no time for answers because the little one with a dash was out of sight.   In a few minutes he was back and announced,  I finish.   Having learned to wait while private things were finished,  I waited again while he proceeded to his room.

I followed him shortly to find him in pajamas and ready to crawl into the high bed.   Well, should it be a story to tell or a story to read I asked.   I am ready for you to choose.   Tell me what it is we should do to get you ready for sleep?   And I waited.  Minutes ticked away while the choice was being made.   Patiently, again,  what will it be?

His face took on a faraway look as if searching for a memory.   I recognized the look and wondered where he would go for that memory to take shape.   I knew it well.   It was a look that had been on my face many times with voices telling me to stop dreaming.   I needed to pay attention to what was at hand and not waste so much time dreaming.  So because of those reprimanding voices,   I knew to wait.

He asked if I would sing the one I singed when I singed with other voices.   He knowed that song!

What song is that?   I wondered.  There was no time for me to sing with other voices that he would have heard.   Like this, he said and in his high soprano he sang his Gllloooooooooorrrrrrriiiiiiiiiaaaaaaaaand I knew.   Unbelievably I knew.   The music hung on his tongue and in his throat as if he were tasting a delicate sweet.

When did you ever hear me sing that?  I asked.   Before I came to you,  he said.   Before I came.   I heard you singed and my heart singed with you.   I knowed I could tell you some time if I just ‘membered it.    I promised I would ‘member so I could hear it again and again.  I knowed that you would ‘member if I singed it.   And you do!  he said,  you do!

And I believed him because I gave up choir when he was due to be born.   I took this child into my arms and sang the song he so wondrously remembered.   And when I came to the part he remembered his voice faithfully shadowed mine.   And another posit was added to the Memory Bank but who would believe it?   Who??????  Except the many someones  who entered their place of belief every time they bent their knees.

Those are the who. . . . . . .

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