Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Thank You Mejenis

Just this morning my nephew posted something on FB, one of those goofy questionnaires the kids put up, and for that I owe him great thanks.
The first line of the posts asks you to indicate whether you are ‘single’ or ‘taken’. I chose to answer ‘given’, because that is how I view my marriage. I am not entirely my own self anymore but I am not taken from myself at all. I am given with great intention to my partner.

And that got me to thinking.

What if I did the same in the New Year with other things? What if instead of being taken by force toward a healthier life I gave myself with intention to that life? Knowing its faults but loving it anyway?

What if instead of casting myself away from those who do good work - remaining single in my efforts, so to speak - I gave myself to those who touch the world in places I think are meaningful?

What if I married my ideals, instead of making them dating material, easily cast aside for the next, remembered only with a wistful smile? 

I’m thinking instead of being resolved, I will be given in the New Year. I will compromise. I will  approach opposition with the idea that we must work together somehow and pursue that end. I will show affection for tire, I will step away when a break is needed but always with the intent to return. I will keep at it and at it, wanting the success of it with all my might, whatever it is. I will love and smile and give my best, and have a laugh now and then at my own expense. I will offer what I’ve got knowing there may be nothing but my offer for that day. Some days I’ll receive without asking and that will be reward enough. 

I will not be resolved, not single, nor taken.

I will be given.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Is It Right?

As I write this, my husband has gone off to work, my children are just beginning to wrest with the warm sheets of their slumber, a fresh pot of coffee waits in the kitchen. Lena Horne and I keep one another company in this room bright with sun and ribbons that sparkle. A snapshot that delivers.

Today, another's child will wake without covers, his mother dirty and sad, his father unrested for fear. They may be cold or wet, too weary to know whether they head north or west. Hunger will grumble in their bellies, to no avail. There is no music.

Is that right?

I'm compelled by some unknown to think about them as I enjoy my day, wondering if He for whom I celebrate would be pleased by me or deeply sad at my sweets and abundance. I wonder, too, if all my other doubts and starts make Him wonder whether I deserve my joy. He'd be right to do so, I'd say.

Tendered into my smile is this worry that I am indeed not worth this good life of songs and ivies. It can't be right. So I imagine new in the day a tuxedoed man with a microphone will pour his regret as my crown and flowers are taken; the crowd's roar will not save me as I bow away from the stage.

If it were true that my sister in the dirt might get my crown I could accept that truth and be away. But what is really true is that she may never be clean, and I may always have this sweetness, neither of us deserving our lot. I am brought to my knees in wonder, worry, and a thanks blurred with tears of ill design.

Among us there are those whose faiths and devotions will divide us, judging, and breaking us apart. If not His message, than another's, is lost, I think. Perhaps my thinking is my poison, the bitter in this otherwise honeyed life. I should take it and make good of it, as best I can, I suppose. When I pray that is it, every time.

"Let the right thing happen, Lord," I pray. I pray it for me and for you, with wishes for love and peace and for all of us, the time to know it. That is right.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

I Worry

I don’t worry about you my Sun, because there you are, even on the darkest days, and when you rise there is no challenge to your greatness.

I don’t worry about you my Earth, because despite your rumble and weep you hold us dearly to your breast, safe and sure.

I don’t worry about you my Sister, my Brother, because whatever ails find your door you have proven your strength. You can count on mine, too.

I don’t worry about you my Child, because you are ready for the next day, healing, smiling; tomorrow is yours to make for the better.

My Mother, I worry least about you, knowing that  the lines about your hands and face are not comprised only of sorrows and fears but of a thousand stories, good and love, the feast of life. God blesses you.

I worry only for myself, that I am not worthy of this Sun, this good Earth, my family so true and kind. I worry I shall never be. 

So I strive, as all I can, and hope.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Inspired By a Comment on Eve's Post

Excerpts from the conversations we might have if some folks had their way:

Via walkie talkie, Jim: (crackle) Phil, we’re gonna need some cones down here, pronto.

Via walkie talkie, Phil: (crackle) Cones?

Jim: Yah. We’re gonna need a bunch. We’re shuttin’ some stuff down. Gonna need some cones. 

Phil: How many?

Jim: A bunch. All of ‘em. Just send down what you got.

Phil: Well, I got Norm up here but he’s workin’ on somethin’ and that dang Harold ain’t showed up to work. Again! So I’m gonna need some time to get stuff to you.

Jim (frustrated, shouting): Dang it, Phil. I need some cones. I need ‘em now. We’re shuttin’ down the Muslims and I need some dang cones.

Phil (frustrated, shouting too): Well right now Norm's tryin’ to finish level 169 but he can only get one of the apples down to the bottom before he gets killed so he’s trying to buy more lives on Facebook. He's on break. You know I can't take him off break so you gotta wait.

Jim (disgusted, to himself): Are you freaking kidding me?

Via walkie talkie, Jim: (crackle) DAN! You need to hold back that line, brother. We’re waiting on a level to be completed before we get the cones. It could be a while.

Dan (frantic): A level?


Allen, to his sister: They’re shutting down the Muslims. Finally! A President with some tacones.

Marjorie, his sister (smirking): The Muslims? I thought you were pissed at the Iraqis?

Allen: Naw. There’s Christians over there. Muslims, Marjorie. Iranians. Afghanistan. Those people are terrorists.

Marjorie (bemused): Afghanistan? 

Allen: Don’t you watch the news? This last President nearly got us all killed by shutting that down. Now the Chinese are over there! Betcha this one’s going back over there to finish the job. The Afghanis started this whole thing. He’ll just bomb the shit out of them, shut it right down. Totally and completely.

Marjorie: Oh I don’t think he’ll do that.

Allen: Oh really now? And why’s that Miss Smarty?

Marjorie: Because Afghanistan is a strategic hub in Central Asia at the crossroads of pipeline routes through Russia, China, and Iran, and has major oil and gas reserves. It also has huge mineral wealth as well as untapped natural gas reserves, all of which have been estimated at over a trillion dollars in value. In fact, five years ago the New York Times reported that the amount of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and critical industrial metals like lithium are so big there and include so many minerals that are essential to modern industry, that Afghanistan could eventually be transformed into one of the most important mining centers in the world. He’s not going to bomb the shit out of Afghanistan.

Allen (shouting): Have you been watching that DAMN public television again? Goddammit, Marjorie, I told you that was a communist station! You know they’re all communist over there, right? You’re a communist, Marjorie! Mom and Dad are rolling over!


Ned, over the fence to his neighbor Ron: That's that for that Shariah law bullcrap. They're shutting it down.

Ron: Shariah? Is that the gal with the hips?


Pauline, to her husband J.C. (from the kitchen): Arlo’s got that fever coming back again but I’m not sure what to do.

J.C. (from the den): Well call the doctor, first. Let’s see what he says.

Pauline: I did. He’s not there.

J.C. (walking to the kitchen): What? Why?

Pauline (unloading the dishwasher): He was sent back.

J.C.: What? What are you talking about?

Pauline (loading): He’s Muslim, Jackson. They shut down the Muslims so he had to go back.

J.C.: Where’s he from?

Pauline (rinsing): I believe he’s from Boone County. Didn’t he go to school with Debbie? His folks were from Ohio though…

J.C.: So they sent him to Ohio? What sense does that make?

Pauline (mildly annoyed): I’m not sure. I think they sent him to Pakistan.

J.C. (incredulous): PAKISTAN?? My God! You can’t do that. You can’t do that!

Pauline (back to loading): You can now.

J.C. (shaking his head): I can’t believe that. I can’t believe it. That’s awful. God. We have to do something. I’ll run down to the pharmacy and get something for Arlo and then we can talk about what we can do.

Pauline: Don’t bother.

J.C.: Why?

Pauline (looking up): The pharmacist was Muslim.


Via walkie talkie, Jim: (crackle) Phil, how are we doing on those cones?

Jim: Phil. The cones?

Jim: Phil. For God’s sake man, I got Muslims up the yang down here and Dan is starting to sweat curry. For the love of apples will you get me some dang cones?

Via walkie talkie, Norm: (crackle) Uh Jim? 

Jim: Norm, that you? Geezus H Christ. What is going on up there?

Norm: Phil’s on break. I’ll have him call you when he’s back. I’m still trying to get this apple down.

Via walkie talkie, Jim: DAN! You gotta hold that line, brother. 


Braydon, to his mom: Maaaaam. Maaaam. Maaaam.

Mom: Yes, Braydon. One time, honey. One time is enough.
Braydon: Mom, can Ali come over?

Mom: I don’t think so, sweeheart.

Braydon: What? Whyyyyy? Why? Maaam. Maaam. Why? Just for a little while??

Mom (kneeling): Honey. Ali’s family is moving, so he won’t be able to come over.

Braydon: What? WHY?

Mom: Well, it’s complicated. Ali’s family is a little different than ours and some of the things they believe are different and the President decided that maybe they should move. To keep us safe.

Bryadon: WHAT? Oh my God! Are they doing that with EVERYbody?

Mom: No, honey, no no. It’s o.k. We are safe. We are not moving. Only people who think very differently than we do. 

Braydon: Oh my God. This is the worst news. Is he already gone? Is Davis? I have to check on Davis.

Mom: Davis? No honey, Davis is not moving.

Braydon: He is! He is moving! 

Mom: No. What? Why? 

Braydon (running out the door): He is a MARLINS fan! I have to stop him!


Via walkie talkie, Jim: (crackle) Phil? Phil, you can forget about the cones.

Via walkie talkie, Phil: (crackle) Alright, princess, settle down. I’m sending Norm down now with the cones and Harold just walked in so you should have ‘em in a few minutes.

Jim: Never mind now, just send ‘em back up.

Phil: What? Why?

Jim: The Muslims are leaving of their own free will.

Phil: Really? 

Jim: Yah - something about wanting to live in a free country, freedom from discrimination, an open society… I don’t know.

Phil: Hah! Jokes on them. This is the only free country in the world. Where do they think they are going?

Jim: Mexico.