Author Archive | Veronica Hallissey

Is However Long We’ll Talk . . . . .

However long. . . .the night is. . . .

Coming into a chosen family will be what someone calls a misfit.  And the label will stick.  This often is a child with a need to know everything and talk.   There will not be anyone to listen.  Because there will be other children, work to do, buses to catch, and excuses given on the spur of the moment.

I don’t have time to listen will be the mantra.  And the child grows to be adult with the need still unfulfilled.  Because in the course of life, there will be work and school, meetings and planes to catch and television.  Now of course we add hand held devices and no time to listen to one sitting next to us.

The need continues in those born with the desire to learn and talk but there is no matching soul with a similar need where we are. The sweet hours of the night are filled with the best conversations, though silent they be.  No matter the fatigue of the soul, the mind conversations are filled with wonder and appreciation as we prepare for conference.    

I awoke with the words, however long the night is,  and wondered perhaps I read them someplace.  Years of research never found them anywhere.  It proved to me again,  that we are not abandoned.    It is included in Psalms of Love. . . on Amazon.  Get it for the one you love. . . .

 However long. . . .

However long the night is,
is however long we’ll talk.
A tongue dismembered from its throat
is punishment too severe
to be humane.

It has taken a life of silence
to filter through its members;
lessons enough for the toughest skin to break.

I have marched with your words
through endless tasks,
through nights not filled with magic.
And heard the harangue from compressed lips
tearing even the plea of forgiveness from Me.

Now I promise.
In the stillness of the life you know
I will come for you. In the light of the night
I will make my way
and no walls will bar my entry.

I will sit the night and across the table
a hand will clasp the one you call your own.
And in the magic of words spoken
I will listen to the story built to house
lives of wonder. 

It has taken too long.

And we, the each, will speak and listen
and as the words flow like rivers
toward their delta, in ribbons of courage,
we will stay the night.    

And however long the night is,
is however long we’ll talk.                                                                                Nightwatch
by Claudia Hallissey

We will sit and talk
by John Holmes

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Virtue In The Doing. . . .

The Keys Of The Kingdom. . . . (In the conversation I mention about the satisfaction in the doing of what most consider work with my brother Stanley, and he said I hold the keys of the kingdom,  in my terminus I see the wisdom of this. 

I was told to ‘do and you will be shown how’ and a lifetime of telling myself that ‘with a little bit of practice it will be perfect.’  Much was never perfect, but I became addicted to learning and a lifetime was lived learning, giving me a joy in the doing of it all.

And giving rise to the comment from my mother in law that I did so many things so well that  the rest of us would be happy with just one of them.   My addiction was a curse as well as a blessing for various reasons.  And being taken for granted was one because it was all fun for me so  they thought. 

Learning still involves work and sweat and many did not see this.   But regardless, I was the winner for sure.  And my corner of the world blossomed with the passion of my love for this earth I  still think is the best classroom ever.   Please be better stewards than my generation.   Nature’s wounds will forever be scars on our memories.)

( from a previous post of 2018 I edit). . .  My good friend appeared at the door and said you have to learn to play and we start now.  Alas, another argument begun about our differences , proving again opposites can be friends.

It is my good fortune and sometimes a curse to have the ability to view and discern behavior.  Because I see clearly what is one man’s meat is an other’s poison.

People approach work and play differently.  I watched our sons grow and in process changed attitudes.  Mowing lawns, chore, but cleaning the garage, therapeutic with a ‘look what I found!’  Planting flowers with their Latin names an art and school homework eagerly approached as to subject.

With the youngest I looked forward to making a hockey rink every week after Christmas.  I happily stood in below freezing weather and spraying but 2 a.m. was my last spraying I shouted!  I somehow related to my elderly neighbor who sprayed with hose and nozzle in the summer for hours.  There is something spiritual about watering whether ice rink or garden.

One inlaw daughter with her artistic talent makes brussel  sprouts look awesome.  Another can make tired furniture look new even with ongoing construction.  Coupling these details with their professional talents make these an extension of their work.

Where is learned the virtue of labor and beauty in the doing?  The magic of it all is in the heart.  It is approaching the place in mind that says all is play because the body is actualizing the mind’s intent and therein lies the beauty.

Fortunate you are if someone loved you that you with love are remembering and teaching.  The memory comes alive at sometime and we pay it forward.  Some have not known it but we can be the memory for their future.

A brother and I discussed this and he said sis,  you have found the keys of the kingdom, haven’t you?  There is no more than this in its deepest.  It is all art in the making.  My Mentor said that the fields are ready and the call is out for the vineyards.  There is virtue in the labor and beauty in the doing.

A Belief System. . . (an excerpt). . .

The answers will be forever hidden
in a place no one chooses to look;
the hearts and minds of those
who love this earth with passion.
Surprised they will be
to see in the palm of their hand

the keys of the kingdom . . .

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Sometimes. . . words are not helpful. . .

Even unto this day, I am surprised  when  memory pops up to be dealt with though never a hint as to its depth.  Where has it been keeping itself?  No doubt in the catacombs along with my ancient self.

It is  somewhere in the journals I am sure.  I just spent too much energy looking for something that memory will serve just as well.  It was a Sunday evening and we had just left an open house affair.  It was a  holiday affair with decorations still up.  It was getting dark and foggy and nothing seemed familiar.

I really  don’t know where I am, my  mate said.  David was in the hospital and soon they would be closing to visitors.  Things remained unfamiliar and we were getting anxious.  Out of nowhere appeared a vintage vehicle slowing beside us.  I remember clearly was that the car was squarely cut like my drawing.

This spare looking man with a spare sounding voice asked need help?  My husband answered that we were going to Ford Hospital but we were lost.  He seemed to know that and said loudly, follow me.  And we did.  The vehicle remained in front of us, and in a short time the streets became familiar, lights and all, and we waved to the man with a salute and he saluted back and waved us on.

And with a swerve to heaven knows where, he was gone.  Square vehicle and spare man.

In the course of living and learning, one knows when to keep still.  There are some things that have no explanation and trying just further complicates relationships.  To attempt to explain would need more explanation of what makes you think that and how do you know?

Unless life has been one of sharing thought, some things are better left for self revelation.  And in time, all things are revealed.

My  Father’s  House. . .

I lumber about the edges of my father’s house.
The corridors stretch empty before me.
Doors stand ajar, impatient for my knock.

Yet I hesitate, for I live in a familiar room,
knowing its nooks and my constructed partitions
yield only to my touch.  I know too,
where the edges are not tightly sealed,
where winds sneak through
disturbing my zeitgeist.
I know at what time of day to avoid those edges.

But woolen socks do not a winter break,
nor spring tempered by autumn winds.
Here in my father’s house are rooms unexplored
with answers to questions man dares not ask.

It was promised once that a room
would be prepared but went unexplained
because the question went unasked.
No one wondered how these rooms differed.

Shadows follow, casting patterns
similar to our habits, dressed in symbols
disguising our thoughts.
Furnishing the rooms will be the shapes of our days,
colored by glass prisms reflecting us.

The heart’s yearning impresses the mind’s eye
and doors swing wide.  Worlds spill upon worlds,
breathless, intoxicating in their newness.
Yet in a moment, their familiarity is viewed
with the reaffirming recognition

of our god eyes.

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Now Another December. . .

 

It was another December at the end of 1987.  I had brought my in law mother back to her residence and she collapsed in bed.  She borrowed courage from everyone to get through the holidays in  Chicago.  We were in a blizzard and I ached to get home.  And unpacking I realized I could not leave her in her apartment and the weather worsened and I had noticed cars were not stopping at lights anywhere.  I would walk to get her  and somehow we would get back here.

We walked the blizzard streets and in great relief she slept upon getting into bed after a hot bath.  I wished to stretch out my hand to gain strength but an other  already reached for mine.  What do people do when there is no one to help? She asked.  The best they can Sarah, the best they can I say.

The journal entry continues  that December 30, 1987, and I scribed the following, ‘but we sit here and already your mind moves to the grandchild in the crib with not knowing that the son of your heart had already retired for the night in the room.  You watched the child in sickness and he watched his mother with her magic chants as they drew from his son the illness causing such heartbreak.  You can do it, he was saying, you can do it.

 And he was in awe as he watched this atheist profoundly calling on a benign force that would move the sickness from the body of his son.  He watched you move those  hands in air that was vibrant with the power pouring through you.  And he said that this is my mother and  this woman I don’t even know.

And he knew that in all that had transpired, in all that he watched, he would take to his writing and pour out what was observed and you think that if not observed, he would have known anyway. 

Let the power move through me and make me an instrument of thy peace, he said.  Just like her.’

In the morning a wiped out toddler recovered enough to stand and shout his demands to rattle the crib.

I have learned there is an undergirding of our Universes  of an ethical premise that supports life and demands of each of us the highest and best we can be.  It may be benign but it is a spiritual power we may call God or Allah or Jehovah  or Christ or simply Good.  It demands that we aspire to our Best.  We welcome obstacles before meeting  the greatest  of our challenges however different for each of us.

I Hear. . .

Look beyond the Light
into the face of the morning sun
to see that the Light beckons and extends. . . .

It would grant you peace
should you let it.
It will grant you life
should you welcome it.

Amen and amen.

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Let the children tell us. . .

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 Glllooooorrrrrrriiiiiiiiiaaaa and 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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I hold the candle for you. . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are bringing to close another year with what are special gifts.    It is the gift of gratitude for life, of a peace not yet finished and a state of mind that is in itself a miracle.  These are limited only by focus and not by belief systems.  They are adopted in varying degrees by all worlds.

Christmas is a Christian Holyday of great belief.  For those of different thought,  it is a state of mind as well as a condition and time in the heart and welcomed. 

I once wrote that I wondered why as a country we were not loved.  And my conclusion was that it was envy.   Because people come to our borders together in love even though their roots may be in other countries.  And other countries are convinced it will never work.  Sometimes it works well and then not but we work harder.

Their children mingle and fall in love and bring children of many colors into our world.

We may not understand nor believe as our neighbors.  But we work for their acceptance as we have been accepted.  It is a process and a continuing work.  We do not let go of this wondrous dream experiment in time called democracy. 

And the rest of the world huddles in their winter coats and wonder the stagnation of their breaths. 

We are equal to the gift and we will show and live our gratitude in all ways we can. 

Because this vehicle I drive for these almost a hundred years has become road weary,  I give a rest somewhat and send this card to all of you in this manner.

It is one of my favorites and humbles me in ways that drives me to my knees.  We may not be able to share our brothers’ beliefs,  but we can hold the candle as he makes his way up.  I hold my candle with love.

A blessed holyday in your heart from mine.

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Life Demands Understanding . . . .

The missing link for me was during the Clarence Thomas hearings when my sister was visiting and we watched till all hours.  I was knitting in the corner and what I heard had me shout what did he say?  And she said that Joe Biden said that Man cannot put in what God has left out.

That was the missing link for me in my independent study of why no matter the love involved, unless the footwork has been done, growth is hindered. 

Whether the idea of God or Good is Religious, ethical or simply Life enhancement for all alive, it will be the best and highest that you give thought.  Your difference will be significant.  A belief system worth its salt must be adhered and applied daily because the each has a high system of conduct that whatever   you believe gives life to you, has a demand for its understanding that must be adhered to carry you through life.  Else you need a support system of at least one to pick up what you cannot.

These past months have brought heartache to many and unrest not to be believed.  The Supreme Court’s ruling on Roe v Wade brought many to the frontlines.  Memory is still alive for me when decisions were only made with the sayso of husbands.  The ability for all to marry  whom we wish will be on the line to take away as easily as the 50 years we had as women to make judgments concerning our bodies.

But how to take away memory?  What will they do with someone like me?  Or the many babies being born with open heads and a foot still in the world from which they come.  Dare I write and say that perhaps the gay person has memory of what gender they were apriori?    Or maybe they know for sure that what gender they inhabit now is diverse  of what and who they are.

The almost   4 year old  told this grandmother when she asked if he had a happy time with cousin Maryann.  Not Maryann, but Olivia he said.  From where?  You know grandma, you know, he tiredly said, in that place where we wait to get born. 

And the mother of a daughter almost four told me that her daughter said  she walks on her toes because she was a dancer before she came to her as a baby.

There must be thought given to what we teach as life everlasting.  Perhaps it means exactly that, forever and forever.  When we are rested, we take to the road again, forever and forever.  There is no resting on a cloud or guitar playing or walking golden streets.  There are vineyards needing plowing and planting though there are wine casks when grapes are ready.

I scribed this on May 3rd , 2022 when this was written for the last paragraph. . .( all this has to be done with an eye to the progress society has made and also to what has been an incomplete seal in the human body that has resulted  in memory being open to the last gender accommodated by the soul in transit.

Who knows for sure veronica, who knows for sure.  And who wants to play god?  Who would rather be at home with an open head than to take on a body in society where this kind of behavior has met with such derision for so long?  And could only be spoken as an abomination in the old testament as it did  by the scribers who had not the centuries of questions plaguing yours.)

art by Claudia Hallissey

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the last bird sings. . . .

This is a very difficult post for me to write.   Since I have been blogging, I have shared many personal thoughts. What has caused me pain is fully factual and I encourage my readers to Google it.  I have no credentials after my name but I am entering the last decade of my hundred years saying this has personal  feelings.  But last week I read an article that made me whiplash.  It was the following. . .

Emergency room visits for “suicidal ideation” (or suicidal thoughts) among 5- to 19-year-olds increased 59% from 2016 to 2021, and hospitalizations rose 57% from fall 2019 to the fall of 2020, according to the study published today by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

What made me painfully swivel was the age of five years that children were having thoughts of suicide.  5 years?  I have concluded that this has been my  hardest life’s journey.  But at 5 years I was lying on the grass and moving clouds mentally into positions I needed them.

I have almost three quarters of a century of journal entries.  And yes, some of them are blissfully boring which is a merciful moment; never thinking I was different but an easy mark for all those who were inclined to constructively (?) criticize.  I was quite old before coming to mind the thought that everyone liked the way I worked but not who I am.  Confronting the accuser after being called gullible, I asked if that was the same as trusting.  He blanched.

I was born the sixth child (daughter) after 5 sons.  Difficult healthwise  from the beginning and spending almost 2 years from 10-12 years of age in the Sanatorium because of a spinal infection. (before penicillin) 

I loved my brothers and they, me.  There were 2 more siblings, brother and sister after me.  My brothers watched me carefully.  We all carried shares of work because we were so many.  We were not inclined to affection so no memory of hugs in my bank.

I thought I was like everyone else, though my sister said I was not lovable.  My Coast Card Admiral brother said I was the only one who thought about life’s  meaning.  My oldest Navy Commander brother said he never gave thought to the things I wrote about.  The brother closest in age said he need not explain himself because I knew his thoughts; we were alike.  The quiet brother knew my journey and offered space when I needed it.  I wept. 

I talk long and hard about our jenny genes.  I am aware of nieces and nephews and grands who have had hard times and early departures.  Yet also the triumphs that depicted enormous courage with passages through rough terrain unspeakable. 

But with the article came the knowledge that what I have learned I must speak.  Many of us with the jenny genes, meaning having my mother as mother or grandparent, came endurance for some and inability to stay for others.  Too many altars to cry against and too many arguments with the heavens. 

I came with a foot dragging from my last world and an open head.  A tsunami let loose with an ocean crashing in my  head at 35  had me shouting close up my head.  Almost 60 years ago and I still remember that my only wish was to sleep forever. 

It has not been a walk in the park.  Regrets?  A few.  But mostly gratitude  for what was learned and what was given to me in the sons of my heart.  I don’t know where I could have been given such gifts.  Evolution has stagnated and wars continue to be fought for no reason at all.   Earth’s knowledge graces many avenues needing clarification. 

I have knowledge of things taught in ways not common.  Children born now feel they have failed somehow.  They have  not but they must be embraced because of who they are. They are open headed and open heartwise and they are cause for celebration.  But they need adults who have survived physical life not in the secluded arches of churches, monasteries, convents and forests but in the secular world where the gifts and talents that rust and moth do not destroy are practiced.  And five year olds  should be loved and excited to be born in such a beautiful world and we are grateful that they choose us to be their parents.  Because we choose them.

Where spiritual life can be enhanced and a living made in the marketplace.  So now we begin.

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the twig already bent from a somewhere and . . . when. . .

 

 

 

How To Do It. . . .when I scribe. . . .

You ask. . .

            On focusing, your thoughts, your words. . .
            how do you do it?

I say. . .

  I barrel down into my center and listen
            with my inner ear and hear what my heart says.
            It is within me that I have my world.
            This is what and where I am at home.
            And this is not something that can
            be taught.  It is how the twig is bent.
            And what world we appear in is where
            we do our work.

 

You say. . .

            You listen to your heart. 
            How does a heart speak?

I say. . .

             there is a murmur within that tells
            you things and it is with the heart
            that one moves.  The heart is the
            largest area of emotional and profound
            truth.   I can see where the child
            who is maimed right from the beginning
            and embarrassed because of his openness,
            can dismiss this avenue and close it up.

            And the world suffers and evolution
            is held up and we have one who is in trouble.
            It is always the children with me.
            I would protect them.  The sophisticates
            I would tongue lash and say grow up.
            Stop using childish tactics to be cute.
            When you have an old face and
            childish mannerisms, you are not cute.
           

            Cute is for under 5 years old.

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Will I Require An Alibi?

In The Mirror Is The Answer. . . .

THE TEACHER SPEAKS. . . .It is useless to say that we can be non judgmental when we make judgments of necessity all day long.  What we must not judge are the places an Other comes from when we look upon cultural ways. 

When we understand the cultures of other people, we then begin to understand ourselves.  But we know too, just as the decisions concerning our personal behavior are a matter of conscious choice when we reach the age of discernment, then we know too, to hide behind cultural practices is begging the question.

When we decide how it is we are going to approach the questions of life, we then begin to know where it is we are coming from.  If we sidestep ‘just this one time’ we are already setting the basis for future behavior.

Matters of character are personal decisions.  They are not based on anything except as we view ourselves.  And character is the basis for everyone.  And character is formed early, within the safety net of the family.  What is let go ‘just this time’ with no comment, is not to be viewed later with the question ‘how did this happen?’  when confronted with the larger implications. 

This implies that we are going to grow up, that we are going to mature at some point.  What is being said is that the process is never ending, never finished.  For along all junctions we will be pressed with character questions.  We will be expected to make character decisions.  And the final questions will always reside within the individual, ‘what will this say of me?’

 In the process we know that we can fool no one.  Especially the one whom we look at in the bathroom mirror first thing in the day.

 We know, know deep within us that we cannot be a better anything than we can be a person.

Small Bear or Large Cub. . .

We can interchange our adjectives
and the words take on different meanings,
depending on our frame of reference.

We may find that bigotry is the same as
prejudiced preferences and my color
may be other than what you are.

It is quite right for where you are, if that is
all right with you.  But I ask will you clean house
and set straight your attitudes

so you can say gay with no malice?

 

art by Claudia Hallissey

 

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