Abuse, Agape, Alienation, Alienation From Self, Alison, Attachment, Authenticity, Being True To Yourself, Christianity, Evil, Happiness, Hope, Human Nature, Jana, Knowledge, Learning, Life, Living, Love, Lovers, Oppression, People, Poetry, Quality of Life, Relationships, Spiritual Alienation, Spirituality, Unconditional Love

A Flock of Sparrows for Majel: The Tragedy of Fool’s Gold

A Flock of Sparrows for Majel

(About an 8 minute read)

Jana was nearby,
For a decade, always nearby.
But I was not close to her.

She became my wife
And we shared a house.
We shared a bed.
We shared our bodies,
And we told each other
We shared our hearts and minds.

In truth, she was that spot on my back
That I never could see,
And that I never could reach
No matter how often,
And no matter how hard
I stared into the mirror,
And turning this way or that,
Tried to spot her.

Continue reading “A Flock of Sparrows for Majel: The Tragedy of Fool’s Gold”

Human Nature, Life, Living, Love, New Love, People, Poetry, Romantic Love, Terri

A Flock Sparrows for Majel: “When We Pivoted on Our Egos”

A Flock of Sparrows for Majel

(About an 8 minute read)

Do you remember now
That long ago dewy night
When we dissolved our proud walls in the Milky Way?
We were surprised to discover our hearts were twins.
And we began purring together like two cats cuddling.

We were strong and confident and nineteen.
We had returned for the summer from our universities,
And we lay, face to face, and eyes to eyes
On the hill behind your mother’s home.

Continue reading “A Flock Sparrows for Majel: “When We Pivoted on Our Egos””

Advice, Alienation From Self, Authenticity, Being True To Yourself, Coffee Shop Folks, Jackie, Love, Lovers, People, Poetry, Quality of Life, Relationships

Does Someone Love You Now?

(About a 4 minute read)

Do you remember now those decades ago
On the porch of the Oak House?

The evening you wrapped us in a thin blanket
Elbow to elbow in solidarity
Against the October chill?

We listened to the coyotes calling to the late sun
And waited for the night
And waited for the comet
That hung above the San Luis Valley that year.

You were a girl then. Seventeen and sick with worry
The boys would never want you —
Want you enough to stick with you
Beyond the sex you gave them,
Want you enough that the love you felt
Would ever be returned.

I was forty-three — and twenty-six were the years between us,
The years you reached across to ask me in earnest:

“What must I become,
What must I turn myself into
To earn a boy’s love?”

That afternoon on a bed of moss and stone
You had fallen asleep next to me
In the shallow water of the Upper Pool.

Small bubbles formed on your pubic hair like silver jewels,
Sun and shadows raced and swirled across your satin skin,
Something older than the gods spoke
In your graceful curves, spoke in an ancient tongue
Of your youth and your fertility

And I could not believe
Anyone so beautiful

And I could not believe
Anyone

Could feel so alone.

Do you remember now those decades ago, Jackie,
When you bravely reached across the years between us,

When you broke open your heart,
When in the growing dusk
You called off your guards,
And in the gloom
Surrendered your proud walls,
In order to reveal to me naked and honest
Your desires and your fears?

Do you remember now your lips were trembling,
Trembling as you spoke,
And not from the cold?

You were seventeen years old
But a hundred years tired that night,

Tired and worn,

Chased down,
Cornered and numb

From how the boys would lie and use you cruel,
From how they had taken the least,
Ignored the rest,
And left the best of you behind.

You spoke of a hollow chest,
You spoke of an emptiness,
You spoke of a twilight
Through which winds of loneliness twisted and wailed
By night and by day.

And you spoke of a growing hatred,
An exhausting hatred for yourself,
A quicksand sucking you down.

You were so sure no boy could love you
Ever

Unless you could become an alchemist

And with estranging fires and poisons
Turn the lead you thought you were
Into the gold you thought you must become.

Tonight I wonder what you have become
In the cauldron of the two decades
That have passed since I told you,
Urged you, that night on the porch
Not to hide yourself beneath a mask,
Not even a mask of gold.

I all but begged you to be true to yourself —

True so someone could love you for who you are.
True so that someone
Could love you Jackie
For who you are.

I ached that night for you to make my words
Your path and your road, your light and your guiding star.
I ached that night for my words to nourish you.
I ached for my words to encourage and to heal.

Did you grasp my advice?
Did you discover the meanings
That ran like a subterranean river
Beneath my words?

Did you see the truth
That I tried to point you to?

Were you able to turn the words
I spoke into something real?

Have you had the guts
To be yourself?

Tonight I wonder, Jackie,

Does someone love you now for who you are?

Or do you wear tonight a mask of gold

And the winds still twist and howl
Through the emptiness of your heart?

Love, Lovers, New Love, Poetry

On Things that Begin With an Onion

(About a 1 minute read)

One day a man began to wonder
If he should put an extra onion in his pocket.

The question nagged him until he became restless
So he threw on his jacket, then strode out his door —
Planning to walk up an answer.

But soon he came upon a woman so beautiful
The soles of his feet tingled to be alive,
And when she began to sing
Yearning overtook him.

He was at such a loss what to say to her,
The words fell from his mouth
As complete strangers to him.

“I like magenta too”, he told her,
Suddenly referring to her spring dress,
“Especially when it glows in the moonlight
On those nights when the cicada sing.”

His tongue stumbled, “But I…I mean….”

“Yes”, she said in a golden voice
That flowed with a deeper understanding,
“I see by your eyes you recognize my beauty,
But do you also see my scars?
And can you read in them my travels,
Can you read in them my stars?”

Then her tongue stumbled, “But I…I mean….”

A light breeze rose and danced by,
Four sparrows burst from a hedge in a flutter of wings,

Their eyes met,
Met and locked each other in empathy,

As time cartwheeled away.

Attached Love, Awe, Bad Ideas, Education, Erotic Love, Human Nature, Ideas, Knowledge, Learning, Love, Mature Love, New Love, Parental Love, Romantic Love, Science

Do the Sciences Rob Love of Beauty and Mystery?

“It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery … It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it.” — Carl Sagan

SUMMARY: I reject the notion that the sciences rob love of beauty and mystery.

(About a 4 minute read)

Love is probably the best thing most of us will ever experience in life.  This fact is made even more astonishing when you consider that life also includes blogging, and yet love amazingly edges out blogging even in the minds of otherwise sensible people when it comes to the best things in life.

But what is love?

There seem upon examination to be so many kinds of love that it would be perfectly understandable if the question, “what is love”, made us all go off into a corner, suck our thumbs, and whimper.  At least, I think it would be perfectly understandable.  But then, going off into a corner, sucking my thumb, and whimpering is what I do with about a quarter of my day, especially after reading the news headlines.

Continue reading “Do the Sciences Rob Love of Beauty and Mystery?”

Advice, Authenticity, Being True To Yourself, Courtship, Free Spirit, Freedom, Friends, Fun, Human Nature, Ideas, Life, Living, Love, Lovers, Loyalty, Marriage, Oppression, Play, Quality of Life, Relationships, Sex, Values

How an Open Relationship Can be Fun and Exciting for Both You and Your Mail Carrier

“If you love somebody, set them free.  If they return to you, it’s beautiful.” — Anonymous, often falsely attributed to Richard Bach.

SUMMARY:  Open relationships in which the partners are by and large free to do as they please aren’t all roses and sparkles, but they can solve some common enough problems with more conventional relationships.

(About a 7 minute read)

Give me a free spirited woman!  After more than twenty years of being happily celibate, I most certainly wouldn’t know what to do with one, but that does not mean I would not — if the right one came along — seriously consider getting into one of those romantic thingies with her.

You know, one of those friendships where you get to do sexy stuff like…um…I forget now.  Oh yeah!  Like blow up condoms and bounce them around the bedroom together!  At least, that’s what I recall condoms are for.  I’m pretty sure they make lousy garbage can liners, so it’s logically got to be balloons, right?

Continue reading “How an Open Relationship Can be Fun and Exciting for Both You and Your Mail Carrier”

Abuse, Bad Ideas, Cultural Traits, Culture, Human Nature, Life, Living, Oppression, Parental Love, Religion, Religious Ideologies

Rising Above Human Nature

“Nature, Mr. Allnut, is what we were put in this world to rise above.” — Katherine Hepburn, African Queen.

SUMMARY:  Our cultures need to be doing more to ameliorate the effects of our negative human instincts.

(About a 4 minute read)

It’s my impression that most of us these days are at least dimly aware that human nature can be out of joint with human happiness.  That is, we can have a disposition or inclination to certain feelings and behaviors that more or less inevitably lead us into unhappy situations, and even misery.

Warfare is an example of that.  While humans apparently do not have an actual instinct to war upon each other, we do indeed have a full set of instincts that mean war is all but directly hardwired into our DNA.

Continue reading “Rising Above Human Nature”