wind

Many times, when I look out on the ocean and see the sun and the dome of sky that hovers above our world, I think, we’re just another planet; another world. If we traveled to Mars as in movies and saw the sun rise or set or disappear, we’d see a horizon, the dome and an increasing or decreasing darkness or light.
Our world is right in front of us and absolutely out of our control; We could be squashed tomorrow, as so many have been and are each day. Yet, we absorb beauty and feel it filter itself through the miscroscopic strands of wonder that web our brains. If you appreciate a sunset and a wave wipes you out in the next instant, does the pure energy of your last moment of joy somehow contribute to the energy of the world, or is it snuffed out with the awful confusion you are sure to feel while drowning? Why does the joy exist? If you glance down the beach at another person after hoping you were the only one to rise at 5:45 to savor and covet the sunrise, do you entertain the idea that they ache for it in the same way?
I turn thirty-three tomorrow (Today, if you’re being technical but we humans base days on when we rise and I have yet to fall for the night). It occurs to me today that I have known a man for a decade minus 20 days. I met him twenty days after I turned twenty-three. He asked me my age when we met because he was thirty-three and feared that I was seventeen, so young and dewy did I look.
I have tried and so many times failed in these ten years to forget myself and twirl in the world; I have tried to revel and sink into the moments of perfect warmth and unbelievably honest love that he has offered me. He’s made me feel that my life is a novel; a film. No one deserves to be as loved as I am.
I have tried to remember that I am a slew of atoms. I am one mind in a world of billions. The population of the earth has increased so much since the year I was born that I am lucky to have a say at all. My perspective is my own and I am just a taut little mess of sinews and idiosyncrasies. We all are.
The world cannot go on thinking like me, so it does not. We are baffled, we are hopeful, lustful, angry, miserable, erratic, irrational. We hope that God has a plan for us. That Allah, Hashem, Jesus have plans for us.
Plans for us- When we are thinking of a song and it plays or thinking of a loved one and they call; When we pray and what we want happens; When we pray and it doesn’t… Plans when we are hungry, sick, cold, lost, raped, cast-out, miserable and distraught and angry and baffled. A plan for all of us…A plan for refugees, rapists, murderers and molesters; A plan for the sick, the indifferent, the superficial and the spontaneous; A plan for actors, beggars, corporate executives and meteorologists; a plans for mothers, sufferers of dementia, fathers, brothers, sisters and yea, even lovers, too.

Today I was thinking of the idea of eternity and the idea of never beginning. I was thinking that it is easy to beleive in God because this life seems to have come from nowhere; This life full of things manufactured by people with careers or people using slave labor or people making contracts, seems to come from nothing. God was the beginning and has no beginning. Time is an illusion; an idea created by men. It is easier to believe in God.

Baal Shem Tov

This may sound absurd to the average modern American, motivated so by a glimmering world of opportunity, identity and overall oblivious sense of self:

I often find the idea of doing anything beyond basic kindness and self-serving extistence impossible; Meaning, I cannot fathom that any attempt I make to influence the world with self-accomplishment could possible matter through time or after-life. Now, I know that my subject line contradicts this very notion; The Baal Shem Tov hoped only to serve God. No- I don’t believe he hoped to, strove to or felt any particular ambition to serve the Lord; He simply rippled with God.

These things I cannot fathom! These things, not simply because I was eight when the Cold War ended and because I had the appalling gall to count my Christmas gifts and feel slighted if they hadn’t exceeded the year before- These things I cannot fathom because I sit on a bed, sipping a beer produced in Seattle by a company that started when I was two. I cannot fathom Baal Shem Tov shining so brightly with teachings of Torah that listeners  received him as they received God at Mount Sinai (this itself forbidden! Blasphemy!). Yet they listened- They were inspired to feel God through his teaching.

I cannot fathom either a faith so deep or a desire for fame so great that I project or feign the light of the (a) Lord. Nor can I comprehend being a judge ( In older days, His Honorable So-and-So of the 9th district court of blah-blah county established in some foul year of our Lord in a time when cholera was not yet banished and polio was not yet a fear and people grew their own food and one doctor served a trusting and bewildered group of people trusting absolutely in God on  the highest but mostly just hoping to survive until 50 with limbs intact and children keeping the homestead and some sort of future in town; some sort of respectable calling. A teacher for the women, if they must work, and a judge or a politician for the men, if they aren’t bleeding to death in a mine or a ditch). No, I can’t see my way ( in modern days) through deciding the future of people barely blinking with the awful notion that this is it  on this earth. The commercials lied! The product didn’t bring the promise. I made one mistake and suddenly I can’t vote. 

What I mean is, I imagine the individual as myself. I see the whole world as one entity. Then I recoil at the fact that we absolutely smash each other every day, we humans (the last time I called another driver a cunt.. shames me). We hate each other! We judge each other… We are forced to serve each other with utter disgust. Fast food employees buy a lot of fast food; It’s all they can afford. Yet, they get pissed at every customer. Customers look down at fast food workers, even if they used to be one, or if they have no reason to look down on anyone. Chances are, your position in life just happened to happen. Even if you worked hard for it.

To all of you shitty CEO’s and politicians and rich men who snivel like children that you started from nothing- I say unto thee: So did every worker you exploit and so did every bright and shining new face in the business world who never made it anywhere you consider big. You are happenstance and you need to be grateful.

Even if you feel unique and intelligent and consider your perspective to be superior (as I often do), so what? For how long? How many years do you have until some unforseeable force wipes out your brain or heart or loved one or empire or government or bottle of scotch or luxury car or oil reserve or some random disease fucks your life up? How long do you have until you are just another atom brushed by forces you can never fathom under rugs so large that all of history smothers every large thought or heart swell you every felt? How many times can you tell yourself that what you are doing at this moment is important?

Unless you are breathing in every single moment of beauty and feeling grateful, your life is step after step on a field of landmines. If you haven’t thought that you are equal to everyone you judge, then you are probably part of a problem. If you don’t have time to ponder these things, then you understand why it’s so hard for me to ever consider myself anything but grateful.

I have the time and the health and the happiness to write blogs. I cannot fathom believing that anything I do in my life can conquer History’s disregard for me.. Time’s disregard for our desires…

If you have people you love and you are raising children and you are working hard and you aren’t hurting anyone with malice, your life is truly blessed. Baal Shem Tov could not find fault in this, could he? Could God? Do you deserve punishment if these thoughts don’t spin through your mind every day, suffocating you? Shall we all lie down in fields and hope for a vision? Shall we all take up arms for God? Shall we all fight the governments that repress us and deny us time to even think of God or think of our souls, so taxed and lied to and worked and dismayed are we at the way we pummel through the world, eating and drinking and grinning falsely?

A dog barks in the morning, above the valley of my home; This dog barks daily and nightly. This dog, tethered outside of its “owner’s” home since last Summer, barked during storm, Winter blizzard, wind, quiet and rustle. I have a running thought in my mind that I must confront the owners.

Why do you leave your dog outside? Do you not realize it is lonely or scared or desiring your company? Do you not realize that the dog disturbs all below and above you and that you are selfish and negligent? 

Who are these people, with the dog? Who loves them (someone must)? Do they love the dog? Do they believe that the dog likes being outside and if they hear other dogs, do they think that the other dog owners are provoking their peaceful dog?

I cannot fathom; I cannot blame; I cannot weep in confusion and still revel in faith. Perhaps I am weaker than those who would cause suffering. They may see suffering as the lay of the Lord’s land; Perhaps our physical suffering and our upheaval are only a big deal when we refuse to smile at death and accept misery as a consequence for the little drops of nectar we receive for being able to live.

Here I am with, with my beer, in my home (comfortable), in a county on a panhandle in a state in a stable (some would argue) country on a continent relatively free of terrorism or rebellion-inducing discomfort (some would be stifled), in a world of billions struggling, loving, hoping, dying and existing.

Earlier, I could not bring myself to kill an ant, so I tossed it out a second-story window, hoping it would find its balance and thrive without laying eggs in my home.

How could I ever understand God?

 

Blooming Bounty

Yesterday was the first day of Spring and I made a big deal of it, despite cold, cloudy weather. I took Trader Joe’s treats and gift bags to beloved work pals and shared my cheerful delight with all. Mark and I had a celebration yesterday: I made fresh veggie tofu Summer rolls and we drank organic Trader Joe’s Brut and then drove to Winchester and hung out together in Union Jack’s and Brewbaker’s with our dorky pal, the bartender.

I am so giddy over Spring and starting to write again! We’ve also been planning the garden.

I had a lovely little chat with Yawatta (yawattahosby.wordpress.com) at work today. She’s been my distant writing pal for a few years now, since we shared our delight in Kenneth Postalwait (our own Red Hawk www.facebook.com/kenneth.postalwait). I’m not sure if she feels the same way but I really admire her- She publishes and she persists and she’s an honest soul, I think. She also gets adorably excited about certain things and I really like her.  I shared my Spring poem with her today. I want to write like that on a whim again but I suppose restarting my blog is a my second step after signing up for AWAI’s copywriting training. I will slowly build a future outside of an office prison….!

It’s time to watch sprouts grow and revel in warmth and run around outside delighting in small growth and green, for Winter is over and Spring is here!!

 

Ocean Aches

Sitting in the study with apricot-ginger tea, open window, Cold War Kids playing, warm tobacco candle lit, inquisitive and needy little kitten in my lap. On Friday Nathan made a rare visit and brought us a very adorable stray kitten (female) which I think we are going to name Shark. Not positive yet, as we did just return from Florida and it is shark week and I’ve been wearing my shark belt buckle. Once those influences fade I may find a better name for her. I wanted a cat named Hemmy but since she is female, it doesn’t quite fit. She really wants to play but I am typing so she is staring up at me batting her bitty paws.

 May name the kitten Mako instead. Having a fine nite with Mark. We ate chicken and cucumber tomato salad salsa from our own garden, corn on the cob from the farmers market and had two yuengling and a walk. A fine evening. 

A Smarmy, Thieving Beast

Saturday was spent diligently buying transplants of lettuce (2 types, 3 of each), cucumbers, zucchini & broccoli. We also searched for hay and bought cabbage transplants. I learned from each vendor their own recommended care for the plants and some tips for helping the seeds we got thrive. We got ham, tomato & swiss on rosemary sandwiches from the Sweet Shop and the cinnamon donut holes I swoon over and ate at Town Run in the sunshine, searching for crayfish. After a fruitless drive to a nursery that has closed down, we visited Orr’s Farmers Market (hooray) and were overwhelmed by a luscious selection of foods and free samples. We got some nitrate-free bison sausage, squash, cucumber, coconut sticks, corn, green beans, etc. and also the cabbage. Then home to till, weed, dig, compost, etc.

We planted a total of 28 seeds and transplants, beautifully separated and carefully weeded plots- lettuce next to the herbs, broccoli and Brussels sprouts in their own sections near the onions, since they won’t produce until the fall, zucchini and cucumber rows, kohlrabi transplants protected by paper towel rolls, peas in their own random places (a week late..), beets planted and carefully covered, as the transplants look a bit rough…and everything lined with warming rocks and bricks. A lovely garden, pictured in my mind as a verdant wonderland of foods for the picking by early July.

We spent the rest of the evening grilling food. We’ve been eating a lot of the onions that we harvest from the property. On Friday we had a campfire and we coal-roasted onions and corn and ate roast beef mixed with the vegetables. So good. We listened to William Eliot Whitmore and drank Yuengling and it was a wonderful evening.

Sunday morning (yesterday), I was happily preparing strawberry pancakes and poached eggs and Mark went outside to check on the garden. He came inside and said, “Everything is gone”. Haha, funny. “Seriously”. So I became very angry. I finished cooking and stomped outside in my goofy morning outfit of jogging pants and Bongo surfer flats and looked upon leafless stems and decimated lettuce plants, a void of broccoli and a Brussels sprouts patch turned into a buffet. Left alone were the tomato plants and the zucchini but on one plant I found a single leaf with the impeccable outline of the two front teeth of a groundhog. The little shit I said was too cute to kill when Mark warned me they can be a problem and he didn’t want to kill it but wondered if we should. I said no, he does us no harm. He is an innocent groundhog, just trying to survive life in the woods, harmlessly munching weeds from the driveway. My perception has altered.

We spent all of yesterday with burlap and wire and fencing, protecting what remains of our once thriving (for one single day) garden. We learned a lesson. One nite of laziness can destroy hours of work. Always protect against thieving animals before they eat the not-even fruited efforts of your gardening labor.

Carrots are planted safely in a container on the porch. 20 celosia plants are nestled in the landscaping and a once lovely plot of greens growing to vegetables is now covered in burlap and wire and fencing, hopefully safe from grubby little groundhogs and curious deer. Gardening adventures! We can only hope it will all be worth it by mid-Summer and even more worth it when we’re enjoying fall crops to soothe the sting of fading Summer.

Sunshine & Growth

The last two days have been so bright! It’s been cool and rainy for days and days and finally, sunshine so bright that it startles me in the morning. This is also good for my tomatoes, that I may have planted too early. They seem ok but they are certainly not vibrant. They were hearty transplants and I planted them in rich soil so I think they will be fine now that the cold weather has passed and it’s May. The onions are absolutely thriving with tall green stalks. In a few weeks we can eat them and plant the second batch.

This week I am planting brussels sprouts transplants for a fall crop and more tomatoes and two types of peppers are on stand-by until the weather warms the soil a little more. My kohlrabi sprouts are still petering along but not sure about the beets. I think I made a mistake by putting the transplants into a pan to keep the bottoms evenly water.. The pan absorbs heat and cold and they got pretty cold. I feel like a dirty idiot whenever I can’t keep plants alive.

Since the evenings can be busy or lazy depending on how tired and cheerful I am, I’ve decided to start getting up much earlier in the mornings (gradually, 10 to 30 minutes earlier a day until it’s a routine). This way I can care for the plants in the morning if necessary and also care for myself so I have more energy at nite. I need to start my day with healthier beverages and save the coffee for later. I also want to drink tea in the morning more than I do now. My breakfast has been sprouted wheat bread and peanut butter, a banana and an occasional hard-boiled egg for weeeeeeeks. Time to shake it up. I also want time to walk around the house in the morning, outside on the deck or on the path in the woods. It’s stressful waking up a few minutes before I leave, washing my face throwing on clothes, grabbing coffee and speeding to work.

I just want more time to enjoy my home and LIFE instead of work eating up my soul. Being in an office on my ass does not suit my personality. Happy Spring to all and may you thrive and evolve along with my garden!

Selah.