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Curious Journeys in Courage

As absence finds us silently saying goodbye
to everyone,
farewell to every place and memory we cherish

And absent any voluntary theological plans
in conscious development
to ecologically leave us with your absence
of both mind and body,

Pay close attention,
fully invest in,
what feels salutory,
salvific,
benign beauty,
peaceful healing

While calmly noting
what feels involuntary
and threatening,
unfair loss.

And, where you may hear
and see
and feel
All of holonic integrity above

Winning anything
but decomposing Loser usual

When absence of co-passion
finds us quietly saying goodbye
to every reductive relationship,

Farewell to each degenerative place
theology could never cherish.

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The DisIncorporating Client

My most troubling client
told me he died last night.

While this did not appear to be his somber case,
nor, sadly,
did my home office silently resound
like this was his actual historical peace,
I did conjure up sufficient energy
to ask why he thought so
or felt so
or hoped so
or feared so
and probably all of the above.

Why not invite
this spectral tsunami
overshadowing life’s reverberating days
and nightmare nights?
I have no prior experience,
no words
for comparison or explanation,
he replied,
I realize I am not naturally dead
but feel spiritually disassociated,
withdrawn diverse inside
And not entirely out enough
as if
in my nocturnal half-life
I wandered lost last night
and failed to fully reassemble.

So this feels like spiritual and unnatural failure?

Failed to fully return
to business as daytime usual,
to orthodox reasonable integrity,
to all insanity of inhumane nature
out of interdependent touch
with outdoor Earth kin,
nature-spirit Elders,
ancient ring-wrinkling trees
witnessing history
already before Nina
Pinta
and Santa Maria,
cut and bound European cousins
arrived on Eastern Atlas shores…

You talk a lot
for one so dead.
Is there a difference
between Eastern Atlas space
and Eastern U.S. Atlantic bounded place?

Maybe this is a failure,
pacific weakness;
certainly a loss.
Each natural species opportunistically suspects
yet cannot risk imagining
what spiritual difference could remain
within what is left of natural Us.

Perhaps we feel drained
strained
de-brained
maimed
blamed
shamed
reamed by Herculean angst,
absence of health developed spiritual curiosity
and courage…

to pull all my self chosen gods and improper goddesses
together again
each morning resurfacing
into yet another cooperatively longing day.

Perhaps.
Although gods and goddesses do not sound sufficiently accurate,
nor historically courageous
resurfacing this discontinuity
before and after my regathering alarm,
bugled and bungled into each foggy day…

I feel, still, my sacred loss of outside presence.

To die our sacred disempowering death
To competing devilish inside challenges,
To belong cooperative EarthGarden awakened
gripped by supreme ego lost
shadow of light’s Source,
outdoor business time’s nature/spirit boundary
threshold of ZeroSum heart
playing organic EarthGame’s finest
green commons Paradise–
outdoor courageous success
behind indoor curious failure
to awaken quite wrongly dead again.

Natural secularizing life,
falling and failing through bilateral integrity
as Earth allied

All over again
this personal
and contractual
and constitutional well-born morning,
not quite competitively reassembled.
What remains
paid less to keep consuming
but more properly reimbursed to keep bothering to breathe
bad inside air.

As they say,
Shop till dead Time drops

dispersed
depersonalized
dissonant
desacramented
autonomous ego
ReAcclimating toward more cooperative eco-resilient
interdependent integrity…
As he continued disassembling
Ancient branched witnesses turned to enter deeper rooted notes,
Our most troubling spiritual student
dismissed us from domestic servitude
as s/he died last night
As if one human had exclusive rights
of nutrition empowering sovereignty.

We winked back
and said ThankYou
And don’t let that over-lumbered door
slap you down
on our way outside and in,
more competitively cooperating again.

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Death of Dreams

Our children must not die
before their parents
or parental dreams die with them.

And, for those without children,
this is easily empathized
because our dreams must not die
before we do.

Without them
our best selves have already left
whatever misery and boredom remains
for further degenerating absence of purpose.

As our own remaining children
step into young adulthood
wise parents often continue listening
for their dreams.

In this way,
as our own immortal dreams and fantasies fade,
younger dreams become our own extending future.

Here,
in the imperative parental vocation
of restoring therapeutic justice
and peace to dream love’s future,
is where I hear resounding
Millennial Generation Silence

Absence of healthy economic and political dreams
for healing over-heated competing climates
and landscapes.

Restoring inclusive predator and prey recycling justice
and healthy pre-recycling parenting
and dreams of timeless youth
all begin with loving to know Why?

If you have parented a healthy verbal two year old,
you may remember
these challenges of Why
and concomitant insufficiencies of time
to sufficiently reply
Why not?

Why do we dream in language
and icons of mythic sacred relationship?

Why do I dream
of a revolving Fallen Eden
evolving restorative forest-garden relationships,
sacred and secular Paradise Dreams
revisited
revised
rewinding
reweaving Millennial ReGeneration Dreams?

Healthy ecopolitical futures
still Yang with Yin eating from fruit trees
of Sacred Loving Dreams
and Secularized NonDual DarkDeath
we cooperatively own and appositionally manage
root systemically together

ReStorative Yang EdenSpace
with ReDistributive Flowing YinNurture Time–
spiraling bilateral timeless Mythic EcoLogosed Times
of and for PostMillennial Therapeutic Dreams
asking how and when
and cooperating where already
and why not?

A healthy parent
must not lose sacred-secular Dreams
or we all die dreamless forever,
retributing further anger
and fearing frustrating injustice
language and icons of unweaving Earth
fallen eternally to burn
for asking God WhyNot?

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Eyes of a Dying Wolf

I looked through the eyes of a dying wolf
to see fires flaming out our horizon
as long as this wild wolf had seen.

He saw a time
when seizures
were currencies of sorcerors,
shamen and shawomen
born of supremely loving matriarchs.

Seizure medicine knew its own advent
echoing sources speaking dreams of manna geese
flying home for our first through last
Win/Win Thanksgiving Day
through fire extinguishing night.

Thanksgiving Peace Dreams
after fires and erupting volcanoing
seizures,
and also before peace dreams of hope-fired relationships,
responsible as authoritative Win/Win faith,
respect for powers of multiculturing love
over monoculturing fears
of fires for volcanoed hate
of gun-fires flaming out horizons.

I looked through the eyes of a not yet dead wolf
to see fires of restorative justice
for Thanksgiving Days and Nights of Peace
sweeping all Win/Win full-fired horizons
of Wonder as Sacred Flaming Awe.

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Compromising Lives

“Living here can be compromising”
says Dad to Danny
in a John Irving novel.

Isn’t that our universal truth?

Living here is a compromising series of on-purpose accidents.
Living is compromising
with mortality heavily favored to win out,
maybe short-term,
maybe later.

But these odds
between two categories
switch places
between eight looking toward sixty-four,
and sixty-four looking longingly back toward eight,
measuring all small and large compromises
erupting through serenity
in-between.

Wonder
is just taking a time out
to notice the last clematis blossom
is exactly the same color
as the purple mums
hiding behind her.

Wonder
is taking a moment
as no more or less perfect
just as it is,
a snapshot
between where we have come
since Earth was growing glaciers
to when Earth may, eventually, pass on.

A moment
perfectly balanced
in full-color octaves
of sight
and sound
and smell
and savory taste
of spectral Wonder.

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Broken Planting Oaken Tree

We have tree traditions,
still accessible in diverse backward
and forward
reforesting cultures,
of planting a commemorative tree
when a great and portentous series of loving events
comes to its untimely rest.

Recently
my middle son’s lifetime friend
decided it was time to travel with the starlight
and so he left us heartbroken,
trying to be happy for him,
and sad without him,
to become OK with his decision
that he had uncovered enough sadness
despair
depression.
His final vote was cast
and no one else was invited
to participate in his great transitional selection.

So, my son and I
will go into our messy forest
also known as the back lot,
where former residents have dumped asphalt roofing shingles,
and buried an entire breaking down garage.

If we were to dig deeper than necessary
we would probably find other mislaid treasures.
Shattered glass bottles and hearts
and open rusted food and toxic feeling cans,
and plastic of all dismembering colors
and ugly unshapely shards of angst,
but this day
we will dig only as deep as we must.

We will first visit a handful of oak babies
sprouting up under bushes in the side yard
and among poison ivy on the north side
so my son can choose which of these
will become Greg’s oak tree of new life
not beyond
yet still after suicidal death.

We will prepare this sapling’s new home,
digging a deep and wide welcoming hole
among back lot brambles of our thoughts and feelings,
then clear away potential choking vines and voices
now covering a clearing
surrounding trees have left
just right enough for a growing Greg
Large shade tree
to hug my son’s grandchildren,
and their Greg the OakTree loving children.

Then we will uproot our chosen new life tree
with reverence
and baptize her future MotherTree roots
of sacred fertility,
and as we sprinkle holy compost
to shade her vulnerable transparency to shaded light,
we will sing our allegiance to gratitude
for each life created through Father Sun,
nourished with Mother Earth,
sadly smiled with sacred GrandMother Moon,
sprinkling sounds of thanks
for each day
of each life
this oak tree,
as Greg,
will continue bringing us.

We will read and look and listen as Jesus taught
it is ungrateful sacrilege to remain angry
about not having received more grace
than we could have earned with more generosity of time,
when we could choose instead
to give thanks for each day shared with us
doing the best we can,
to give care as we would continue to receive.

Our love for Greg
grows through this oak tree’s future shade,
and west wind protection
for all our future days of thanksgiving
and suffering lost loss,
security for our children’s
healthy and happier children
knowing
remembering
feeling
sensing
this canopy grown Greg
still choosing flight
with starlight nights.

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Ms. Liska

When I was a FreshPerson in a new higher school,
our English Literature class was delighted
to meet a new to our rural area Ms. Liska,
who was a beautiful teacher
both outside
and in,
and so we all loved her,
and knew she loved us as well,
although sometimes not happy with one or another
due to smart-ass behavior.

One day,
for reasons we could not imagine at the time,
nor would I remember in this rhyme
of metaphysical reasons for living
and dying,
Ms. Liska
asked if any of us had heard of Marcus Aurelius.

Whom I happened to be reading at the time.
So I was, as I recall,
surprised to see only my hand up
because I had probably just volunteered
to display my FreshPerson ignorance.

She did in fact go there
and ask just whom I thought Aurelius was,
which seemed to me
to be
a Roman Emperor
who was also a published Stoic philosopher.

And so it seemed to Ms. Liska as well
so why not dig the Stoic grinding ax some deeper?
And what is Stoicism?

Now definitions
are not my strength,
I’m more of a delineating guy.
So I thought a Roman Stoic
might be like a British Churchill,
keeping a stiff upper lip
having looked at all our deadly facts
and blundering on anyway
with this mysterious life of stoicism.

Of course Ms. Liska
would not allow stoicism to rear its obstinate head
within its own stubborn definition
so she kindly invited me to try again,
not because I was wrong,
she quickly added,
but because I could become even more right.

Marcus Aurelius reminds us
if life is indeed a bed of roses
then we should expect some deadly thorns
along life’s thunderous way.

He invites us to embrace our birthday
by remembering
this celebration is paid back
with an ultimate death day,
as what grows up must also fade down
and back.
It’s a package deal.
Accepting this package as gift
in its life and death polarities
is a stoic thing to do,
and a delusional thing
not to do,
a Greek act of hubris;
not very Roman patriotic,
not stoically realistic.

Ms. Liska found this better
than my stoic thorns
along life’s bed of dying roses way.
But,
then we skipped along to something else
and I never did have my time
to ask her what she thought
about similarities and differences
between who has authority to induce life
and whom might, then,
find responsibility for deducting my life,
any life,
humanely compassionate
or more stoically otherwise,
like a hungry Roman Emperor
or voracious bear.

For it seemed to me
quite transparently true
that in accepting my right to live
and do the best I could
to stoically tolerate
everybody else’s own acceptance of their right to live
and do the stoic best we can
with life’s inevitable ups and downs,
then we must agree with our inherited justice system,
and to live within a just war view of stoic death
is also an unjustified view of my authority to live responsibly.

I was no more authoritative
and remain no less responsible
for causing my own stoic life to begin
than to end my own life,
much less anyone else’s,
or to delegate authority
to some tired State
to do this for me.

I think Marcus Aurelius
was more stoically comfortable
with society’s right
to invite
each person who has taken a life
to become responsible enough
to consider choosing their own death
within a wider ecological context
of restorative justice.

But, just, fair, equitable restoration of a life
irresponsibly taken
does not in any way,
not even a stoic way,
suggest society’s collective right
to irresponsibly take yet another life
now lived across a threshold
of authority
beyond which we cannot responsibly live
cooperatively together.

In choosing to kill,
in choosing to sanction acts of deadly violence,
in choosing to maim and harm,
in choosing deadly and imprisoning revenge,
we stoically choose our own death day
with no more or less authority and responsibility
than for our own birthday,
and each day that follows
between life’s roses
and deadly shaming blaming thorns,
between integrity
and separations
devoid of restorative justice opportunity,
further WinWins
for each and all EarthTribe.

It is difficult to teach how to stoically fall on one’s own responsible sword
when raised in a military-industriously violent society
determined to competitively invest millions of dollars
in deadening revenge
rather than enlivening sacred invitations
to more stoic restorative justice,
celebrating life feeds life birthdays
and eulogizing death breeds death days
lost in mythic pasts
when we first sacrificed virgin children
to a drought-inducing
Vengeance is Mine
SunGod,
even before Holy Roman Empires.

Justice as revenge
assumes our competitive choices
are between brands of death,
while restorative justice,
more stoically balanced,
presumes if we did not first, more primally,
have cooperative choices between brands of life,
then branding and marketing justified death
would remain an ecological and historical moot point
of LoseLose vengeful nihilism.

And so I continued in my smart-ass ways,
wondering what Ms. Liska would think
about balancing our right to life
with fight against condoning death
except where stoically chosen.

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