A Time To Create

 

“We’ll not be given time to create, we be asked to create in real time.”

10635989_10204894499231014_3461699215158796268_n

Two years ago, I fled to the Sky Island Mountains to seek shelter from the turmoil and recharge my soul under the blazing sky.

In retrospect, that is why all of us were there. Why so many would travel from so far to meet on the mountain in the name of finding the flow.

Some said it was a cult, and they were probably right, but we went anyway.

Nothing was good on the day I left and I drove for a very long time.

What happened next changed everything in an instant. The lights came on and it was time to start over.

Xavier was standing on the porch at the end of the road to Oracle.

Accusations were made and some said it was contrived.

It was not.

With more unlikely details than I could possibly arrange, somethings fall outside my scope of practice and this was one of them.

But even if it was, contrived that is, I say “what of it?” and advise the inquisition to walk away peacefully while they still can.

Two years ago in a flurry of fear and hurt and desperation, I went to a retreat to study Tai Chi and drink wine with my friends.

Instead, I met a boy and we played push hands and fell in love on the couch.

We’re married now but getting married was easy. Easy compared to the force of nature it took to bring us together and break us free.

The wedding was nice but this was the day of creation.

img_0520_c

 

The Car

Processed with Snapseed.

An old man sat in his car.

His feet hurt and there was no one around.

He used to be my downstairs neighbor but he had shady roommates and things had clearly taken a turn for the worse.

The car has been in the parking lot of the grocery store for two weeks. It doesn’t run and he doesn’t run either. The bus stop for the shelter is too far and besides, he’s barefoot and doesn’t want to go anyway.

He was my downstairs neighbor and that was unfortunate for him because I live on the 4th floor and he can barely walk, or wear shoes, or stand up straighter than 45 degrees.

Lord knows why his kin put him in a 3rd floor apartment, maybe they hoped that once he was up there he wouldn’t be able to get back down.  I just hoped he didn’t set the building on fire because, for all of his shortcomings and ineptitudes, he was a master of chain smoking. Sitting on his balcony all god damed day, smoking one cigarette after another and blowing the smoke right in to my living room though notable, was not his most endearing quality.

Honestly, I had no warm fuzzies for the guy or his meth mouthed daughter and her crack head boyfriend. Xavier complained to the front office and called the police for various disturbances more times than I can count.

One time, at 6:30 on a Tuesday morning, all the 4th floor neighbors were awakened by the jangle of what sounded like my grandmother’s telephone and a wild pounding at the door. It turned out to be the fire alarm and the old man wielding a mag light.

Psychotic breaks are more entertaining when they happen after the sun comes up so, as you can imagine, the neighbors did not see the humor in a wild eyed lunatic tripping the fire alarm after sprinting up the stairs to escape the men with guns and knives that were not in his apartment trying to kill him.

Xavier called the police, again.

Then one day the old man and his entourage left. They left but their stuff didn’t and the maintenance crew had the best day ever gleefully tossing all their furniture off the 3rd floor balcony. It was glorious, I sat outside and watched.

From time to time the police would come looking for them. The car would reappear in different parts of the apartment complex. I don’t know where they went but they didn’t live downstairs anymore so I mostly forgot about them.

Two weeks ago Xavier and I found the car at the grocery store. It lay dead in the far corner of the parking lot, trash bags closed in the doors to keep the rain out and a note taped to the window.

I think now that I am idiot for not taking a picture of the note because it summed up the prevailing lack of forethought that is the defining characteristic of this whole situation.

The note was from the old man to meth mouth and crack head saying where he was staying and at what number he could be reached.  I don’t know how the recipients were supposed to know to find the car in the grocery store parking lot and, if he had access to a phone, why he didn’t just call them in the first place.  It occurs to me now that they are or were likely in jail and therefore not available to chat but if that is the case then what was the point of the note?

Xavier and I went to the store yesterday to pick up some sushi for lunch. The car was still there, sans the trash bags and the note, but this time the old man was sitting in it.

Apparently homeless and no doubt barefoot, he and his car were in a sad state of decline. Xavier called the police to speak with adult protective services. They came out but there wasn’t much they could do. The old man was having a moment of clarity and wanted to stay in the car and it was evidentially his prerogative to do so.

He told the officer that he was broke until his disability check came so maybe when the postman delivers it to the car he can go to a hotel.



What’s Your Elephant?

I could keep waiting for people to change or I could change and the latter necessarily meant it was time to boss-up with no remorse for the blood in the water.

img_4102-300x225

It’s been said that to carve an elephant from a block of wood, all one needs to do is cut away everything that does not resemble an elephant.

It would not do to lament the corners of the block or the shavings of wood that are cut away. They are not elephant shaped, so why would you want them?

To hold on to things that do not serve begs the same question: why would you even want them?

I took some time off from writing this blog but now, on a rainy day in Easterville, I have something to say.

It was time to clean house because the elephant had become unrecognizable.

Asking people for things they don’t have with the persistence of a dog scratching fleas is, well, exhausting to say the least.

The definition of insanity after all is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

I could keep on keeping’ on, waiting for people to change while time keeps on slipping’, or I could change and the latter necessarily meant it was time to boss-up with no remorse for the blood in the water.

You know what I’m talking about.

If your elephant is integrity, why do you rationalize?

If your elephant is honesty, why are you willing to live a lie?

If your elephant is better relationships, why do you pursue people who are less than worthy of your attention?

If your elephant is enlightenment, why do you stay asleep?

The alarm is going off, it’s time to wake up.

 

Above The Clouds

IMG_3566

Here at 30,000 feet the weather is below and the sun is above; hot, bright, burning her face and unchanging.
I’m not even speaking English now, she thinks in vague images.
She’s sleep deprived and hungry but sees the edge of happiness on the horizon.

Clouds like a carpet for a thousand miles and he waits for her in the land of the living.
There is so little time for thinking these days.
But we all know that thinking leads to trying, leads to striving, leads to nowhere except right here anyway.
Remember when we were young and didn’t know what we didn’t know?

We’ll not be given time to create, we’ll be asked to create in real time.
What time?
He has time now, on the road in between, navigating the weather under the clouds.
She has time now too but she looks old today. Maybe it’s because her eyes are tired.

She looks down on creation and wonders why people argue about god, like an opinion matters one way or the other.

The truth doesn’t change and nor does it care.
This road goes nowhere and everywhere.
It goes to the future, but we have to go now.

The plane turns left and the sky is only blue.
He drives.
She flies.
Soon.

Caught In The Moment

 

When the waves roll in

we shall not resist.

IMG_0222_crs

She drove through the misty mountains for what seemed like eternity,
but her face looked the same.
Clouds sat heavy in the cactus,
headlights cut the fog,
humidity soft in her chest.
It was a long drive but not because of the road.
It was a long drive because of the place.

After a lifetime at highway speed
she found the turn
and just like that
the rest of the world could not follow.

She cut the engine and saw him standing on the porch.
He’s here, she thought, and that was all.

**********

They played mind games on the lawn while the Milky Way shuffled its hand.
She sat with him on the couch in the empty house.

They spoke of water and of life.
They spoke of power and of freedom.
They spoke of fire and the way of the mind.
They spoke of everything and of nothing.

Her eyes were open and she saw the things he could not hide no matter how dim the lights.
What began as a respectable distance became no distance at all.

**********

He stood in the breeze of the window,
not anything but himself.
With no good explanation she wrapped herself around him, close, but looking away.
She felt his hand in the small of her back and the other in her hair,
“What’s on your mind, Love?”
Don’t call me that unless you mean it, she thought but did not answer.
Tears rolled down her face and there was no way to stop the breath from catching in her chest.
She knew he noticed.
She saw her life going by, conflict stung her eyes, so many angles to separate the light but not a single word that could be spoken.
She waited for him to push her away, to free himself of her embrace and go back the way he had come.
She waited but he stayed and finally she said, “Sometimes my life seems like such a fantastic mess and sometimes it seems so simple.”
He didn’t know what she meant by that but he knew he was being called so he held her.
There was nowhere else he needed to be.

**********

She slept but he didn’t.
He watched over her the way he always had.
He knew she was playing her cards close, choosing her words carefully.
He didn’t know what was left unsaid but he looked on anyway to see that she was safe in the night.
He was there when the demons approached, when her brow furrowed and her body tensed.
He reached over and put a hand on her chest.
She didn’t wake but pulled him around her like a blanket.
Peace was restored and he could never let go.

**********

He stood on the curb and watched her drive away.
She had slowed down to reach out and take his hand one more time.
He didn’t tell her goodbye, wouldn’t tell her goodbye, but the time had still come for them to part ways.
He watched her leave and went back inside.
He sat on their bed in the middle of the universe.
His heart was coming undone.
It wasn’t the first moment
and it wasn’t the last.

Home

Sometimes things don’t work out.

No, sometimes they don’t work out at all.

And, sometimes, it seems heartbreaking.

Things were not as I thought I wanted them to be.

As it turns out, I thought wrong…

arizona

Once upon a time on a mountain in the sky,
Arizona burned bright with flames a mile high.

And it waited.

It waited while a boy stood at the crossroads, asking for a sign.
Caught in a fluorescent bath of indecision, he looked at his watch, he looked back at his car, he looked at the suitcase by his feet.
It should be so easy, just get on the plane.
“I prefer to be in the plane”, he thought to himself, but his feet still didn’t move.
He thought of his dream, turbulence in crossing the Mississippi River.
A blaze of glory with a sudden stop.
Going down in flames to die a proverbial death.
Something’s gotta give.

He stood in the parking garage and considered his other dreams…

Once upon a time on a mountain in the sky,
with thorny arms and hot breath,
Arizona changed his mind.

“You don’t have to take your life at face value”, he would breath in the words from her mouth as she said it to him later, though he heard it then.
He tried to reach out and grasp the glow of her heat but it was on him already.
In him already.
Compelled his thoughts.
Already.

He didn’t know what he knew while he stood at the corner of uncertainty, not exactly, but a spider moved in it’s web and the wind stirred the surface of the water.

“What if I told you that if you get on this plane nothing will ever be the same?”
He heard the question though it too was yet to be asked.
“What if I told you that you can’t go home again?”
“What if I told you that you never left?”

Once upon a time on a mountain in the sky,
a silent creature in Arizona waited with unblinking eyes.
Warm sand against it’s belly, in the shadow of a tree.
Without worry.
Patiently.

Xavier locked his car and picked up his suitcase, this is what fate feels like.
It was time to go.
Home.