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Showing posts from November, 2011

litmus test

i met a hard-living rancher from west texas who cried at the drop of a hat. our conversations were odd. as he told me about his cattle, the drought and old-world things, he would get choked up and have to look away.  my father, a large man, cried all the time. as an adolescent, it drove me nuts.

i spent a few years reacting against my father's emotionalism (among other freudian behaviors). i didn't, or acted not to cry throughout high school and college.

the more recent fact is that i have less problems with the boohoo-ing. maybe i've matured a bit.  maybe i'm learning to accept the parts of my father in me that drive me nuts.  these are logical explanations.

but i'd prefer to confess this as my litmus test:  if it's beautiful, then it's worth my emotion.  most weeks i celebrate the genius of modern family with a laugh, but ever so often, it's with reddened, moist eyes.  sometimes, after a hard month, i drive and let'em roll, which can be just as da…

a hurry

it has taken years to get here.
what has not lead me to this
place?
had i set out to come to this, likely i'd still be lost
   wandering
   and opposed.
then why do i want you to hurry?
unsuccessfully i've rushed
   myslef.
so please, don't come.
but find a way
   to ignore me
   to translate
   to wait
   to find self
   to

a no-no word

entering the second, i recognize a great failure. of all the words and phrases that have trended in our vocabulary, one i enjoy the least: secular.

i cringe, yet also realize the distinction, not between meanings or contexts, but between values. what was once clear to me in the first half, is now blurred, though no less important.  i welcome the creativity of the gray, the artistry of the world, the thrill of breathing. there is neither secular, nor super-natural. there is only alive.

i believe that humans are flawed, yet at once, incredible. all life is secular, yet entirely belonging to the greater. rinse and repeat, my hope is not for more division- i wait for wholeness.

after wendell

i go among the tall trees,
looking for nothing.

trail interrupted
by a large oak.
face down after august storm,
too high to scale-
too low to duck,
unclip.
the uprooted stump lifts the earth
and leaves a grave beneath.
the canopy gapped by the loss.

i sit, sip, catch my breath.
mosquitoes catch up,
peace hard to appreciate.

as i leave, i hardly notice
the holly tree
sprouting from
the base of the downed giant.
arising parallel to the ground
will make the winter long.

but spring will bring new light
where the tall tree once stood.