There and Back Again

With my perspective recreated in a study, I could return to reflect upon a self I was not permitted to know well enough to apprehend. Perhaps, the result of an effort to retrieve our lives from the shock and awe of exposure to cultures and ways of life we were unfamiliar with, we carried on to follow the problem in yet another, leading others some to suggest yet another remedy for the hazard that sometimes accompanies the task.

My stop at the first falls of our river serve as safe haven to avoid the threats I live with, and mitigating the harm that comes from exposure. My efforts must have been duplicated - lightning struck - and my effort to prevent old reports from becoming another exploitation seemingly demanded another extreem measure of correction - rather than a healing of the problem. Its the falls, and the only place I can tolerate after the shock of my initial encounter with what the living have done to adapt.

A quick decision returned me home. After driving all night, and taking a nap while doing a load of laundry that was heavy with gravity, I continued on to the East on the road I came in on, instead of heading North-North East where I needed to go.

I was confused after a dark night of travel on the tortuous path I was told to drive. A burst of bright white light flashed eastwardly before me as I crossed one of the State lines. And still attached to partners and dreams from the East to ease the pain of my own life, I was driving home with a wound from a previous effort to do laundry in my home away from home. Obediently, I kept my papers with me, and used compass from a friend to navigate the confusion that resulted from problems I tried to describe on the telephone.

I turned back from my Eastwardly travel after realizing I was in yet another State, and regained my lubbar line (objective course) at my point of departure while doing laundry.

First FallsEncountering unspoken body parts, and unidentified remains in Native territory after traveling North, by Northeast, it couldn't have been more than mid-afternoon. I had brunch and a nap while doing laundry, and it only took me an hour or so to realize my mistake, so turning around to achieve my objective and on my heading for another hour or so before seeing the carnage shocked me and caused me to reflect upon the previous nights encounter with the bright white flash, and the abrupt nature of my departure: "Perhaps I drove too quickly, or turned too fast? How would it possible for me to have such a horrible impact on a fancy from a distance?

Like the link between canvas, cord, and an eyelet for a jumper, or the paranoia that results from a transition of general terms to more specific instances of their use, one logical alternative to increasing violence is to find a way out of the harassment. I made way with tent in bramble, by milky-white stream, under the waterfall of a quarry that lead back to the river.


A Facsimile of Confessions by a Minor Pol Pot

Today, I pulled out my ancient copy of BB Edit again to share a story I've been telling others for years now. Not that it'll matter much to them, but it might help you to understand why I had to leave home in the first place.

One day, when I was a young man, I brought my hunting knife with me while swimming underwater by the island on my lake. Our lake was filled with bullheads, and that day I was able to spear a bullhead on the end of the blade of my knife.

Bullheads are dangerous to handle. They have spikes on their fins that are razor sharp, so removing him from my blade was a delicate procedure. It involved wrapping my hand around his body, with the three spikes positioned between my fingers and thumb. I was surprised at landing the strike, and he was compromised - but still alive when I left.

Goosebury Falls
Minor Confessions
Harley at Goosebury Falls

I enjoyed a feeling of power using the weapons of men, and my next target was a gardener in the pond upstream from our lake. I was just trying out the gun. I didn't realize that I would hurt the snake, but it did. I pumped up the BB gun over the recommended limit and hit his side just below his head tearing a quarter-inch from his slender form.

He bled into the water and slipped away and I felt awful about it, but I returned confident of what the gun could do (after all, there were paramecium and amoeba in the pond to take care of the injury).

Then, perhaps a year or two later (the late 1970's), thousands of bullheads started swimming upstream from the lake, and by that time, our family had a potato patch less than 50 feet away. Skits on a local television network about the many uses of fish emulsion as prepared by blenders inspired me.

So I raked them into the potato patch to use for fertilizer. The next day - to my horror - I realized that they were still alive and flopping around in the dirt! And so did my neighbor! I could see her looking out the window at me with a deepening sense of morbid curiosity. The significance of this crisis - lost on me at the time - became clear upon reflection: Being incapable of the use of names (as the Gardner), and completely unaware of the circumstances abroad (Pol Pot's killing fields), I would need to find an alternative too!


The ever widening circle

"Beings are numberless; vowing to free them.

Dharma gates are boundless; vowing to enter them.

Delusions are inexhaustible; vowing to extinguish them."

Minnesota Zen Center

"Rather than catch someone in a lie, show them what was thought.

For every student who has made up their mind, there's another who has not.

What remains is to be accountable, and autonomy is all that's taught."


One Pure Note for Another

Not that one note is defined by a score -
or scored by a scribe that wants you no more!

We struggle to know one sound that rang true,
Without a memory, for music so blue.

We size up the horrors; what grievance reigns in,
In nightmares of hollowed, puppets of skin.

We follow the strains - a new note to play!
On parchment so browned by the patine of a Grey.

Resolved by the true love of harmonious spins,
A union of two notes brings peace to a hymn.


Caps Left Behind

Laid-back visitors, in bright-red yard-chairs,
Sit as we gather our food, midst their stares.

With caps left behind after the lights went out;
Yellow cornmeal now, stead of white alter'd flour.

This one's so simple, missing her part.
Shifting by a road that still has a heart.

She joined me for lunch, just a few days ago.
At a spot down the road - a safe place to go?

We'll find a way, to a place that really is,
On a path not of men, in a place - really His!


Making Way

Much of our time is thinking of death, and death is thinking of me.

Forsaking this world we condemn it, arriving, we make way where we see.

Because we're so violently parted, I guess I'd just rather we'd be,

On our way to the dearly departed, far away from the curse upon thee!


Petal's Filagrees

A flowering of the mind,
And mapping of the infinite kind,

Peers out through Petal's filagrees to find:

Stalk, branch, and stem,
Bridled as trunk and root,
To ground.