Sunday, September 27, 2009

Preaching Nature Like An Apostle

John Muir spoke the words in this title. He was a writer and ardent naturalist. Moved to tears and enticed to write of the inspired beauty, Muir made inroads like no other naturalist.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Dance with Solitude

Not sure what mating call it was that lured me to LaGrange; what freak act of kismet brought me to the backwater of west central Georgia, but whatever latter day Scylla and Charybdis, I was summoned, landing smack in the middle of a pasture full of weeds. These weeds of ignorance and decay, of discrimination and entropy were not a welcoming sight. But the landlords of this pasture were welcoming, if only superficially. And so I journeyed here.

Living among the weeds meant that everybody left me alone. While some tried to get rid of me, for the most part I was ignored. When your feeding tube is dependent on friendships, this makes life hard. Friends were impossible to come by in this land full of thriving, happy families. A single woman was regarded as suspect and thus unwelcomed. I noticed even single men had a hard time making connections.

But while I was bereft of the nourishment of friendship, I was not bereft of language, nor of the ability to dig deep down for the substantive emotion informing my heart. I also had an abundance of solitude which, for better or worse, enabled me to create joy and imagine worlds. Best of all, I had the good fortune to enjoy one hell of a romance with one good and intelligent man.

A homeless Navajo woman I once knew in Tucson told me, when my chin was pressed up against poverty and homelessness, that I needn't worry. She said, "All you need is the sky."

For me, the deep blue bowl above my head would have to do.

From: The Back Porch of Heaven

The News

The day rounds itself into noon. A bird perched atop a light pole sings its melody in excruciating twills, the synchopation in counterpoint to a Mendelsohn adagio.

The radio announces that at 82 Frank Sinatra is dead. In 1942 he became a solo singer. As a teen he liked to hang around musicians.

Rioters in Jakarta burn buildings at shopping malls killing 120.

Vidalia growers in Georgia may lose their crops this year due to an immigration service raid on illegal farm workers.

One million dollars will be spent in the next three years on educational testing.

The mockingbird is gone and so is Mendolsohn. I'm alone and it's quiet. The day completes its course, slipping past me with wet heat into obscurity.

From The Back Porch of Heaven 5/15/98