Thursday, April 22, 2010

Revisiting "When We Meet"

(Just because I wanted to) [smile]



When We Meet


I’ll not meet you side the highway,
Nor in the halls of commerce,

Where serenity and quiet,

Have no home … nor can be found.


I’ll reserve for us a table,

With a window on the Bayside.

Softly draped, with cloth of linen,
Weaved by noble Peasant hand.

We will sup with wine by locals.

Label known not to the merchant.

We will dine on fare from labours,

Of attentive, gentle care.


We'll be slow about our speaking.

Of each other we are learning.

Of each other are becoming,

More as One ... no more, the Twain.


We are learning, and accepting,

All that is our inner Beings.

All within us … all that makes us …

All defining who we are.


Can we cling to, save, this moment?

Can we hold it to our bosom?

Will it nurture and uphold us?

When our outside worlds, we face?


‘Tis most certain that we cannot.

For life’s swirling all about us.

This, the fledgling bond between us …

Life would pull and tear apart.


So please meet me, ere you wander,

In your busy life and duty,

At our table … by that window.

Where our Union knits, once more.



John-Michael

25 February 2008
Revised & Retitled 3 May 2009


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Prelude to "The Magician's Blanket"


My wife asked me (more than once) why I felt compelled to tell my world about all that was most personal and private in my life. I remember, quite clearly, responding with something closely akin to “My experiences are the only things that I am the authority on. Only I can speak of the intricate details and elements that surround my experiences. And if any part of what I have lived can be used by anyone to make their life easier, less painful, better understood, or more enjoyable or happier … then I will not exercise some sense of protective selfishness in denying that person, or those persons, a gentler, more satisfying, or joyful moment in their pilgrimage. This is all that I am capable of giving … and I will not hesitate in giving it.” My answer did not assuage her desire to cloister her life from the knowing of others. But that is her choice. You, Dear Reader, know mine.


That said, I am responding to the urging of Lady Muse … and giving, here, some of the details surrounding my earlier “The Magician’s Blanket” post.


Breakfast at our favorite Diner had been previously planned … and (after my morning run) it was there that I went (still wearing perspiration soaked sweat-clothes) and found my business Partner in a booth with two young ladies.

“Here we go again!” I thought. Knowing my Partner to be the most charismatic and accomplished “Gamer” that I had ever met (and he still, to this day, holds that ‘distinction’), there was no shock at seeing him fully engaged in his favorite sport.

He introduced me to the two … one, the glamorous and finely turned out woman who was obviously accustomed to being the center of attention … the other, a very pretty young woman who was the filling the role as “companion to the Looker” that I too was familiar with in my social and business engagements with my associate and friend.

So, here we were … the two of them happily playing their well-rehearsed, and finely polished, game with each other (something akin to two creatures strutting their finery at the peak of mating season … determining whether there would be a conjugal conclusion that would be chalked up as one more on their sizable scorecards) … and the two sidekicks who had heard and seen it all far more times than could be tallied.

She and I said little … quiet looks exchanged … smiles and rolling of eyes that said volumes of understood knowing.

Then the two leading characters in our little play decided to move the production to the apartment that the two girls shared. It seemed that they planned to move to a new address in the near future. Mister Mover (pun intended) suggested that he and I (my participation was an easily assumed given [in his estimation]) wanted to survey the size and scope of the proposed move (the furniture, and etcetera … not the unspoken, but well understood ‘move’ that both he and she were sparring around). Thus we left the diner. Mister Smooth and Miss Glamour in his new, sporty, and very trendy car … and (by default) the two attach├ęs in the second car.

Much like two ‘Seconds’ at a duel or sporting event, She and I accompanied our ‘Star Players’ as they continued their jocular joust.

But this time … something new and unanticipated was happening ... the magic of a drawing bond between us. It was first evidenced by our gently, quietly, and quite naturally taking each other’s hand as we walked to the car. We attributed it to the cold and our need to share some warmth. It was so appropriate and right that we continued holding each others' hand throughout the ride to the apartment.

Then, as The Two continued their ongoing sport, the two of us sat next to each other on the earlier-mentioned sofa … and talked. I still remember (these 30+ years later) what we talked about. This unassuming and delicate creature enjoyed her weekends driving a huge, four-wheel-drive pickup truck in “mud-boggin” competitions. I was amazed! And appalled. The thought of people purposefully abusing and misusing equipment and/or machinery was something that I could not countenance. My Dad had programmed me to respect, care for, pamper, and always protect all things of mechanical or technical nature. I could not fathom someone going into a deep mud-filled swamp with a beautiful piece of finely engineered machinery and, with intent and forethought, try to see how much abuse and challenge they could get their truck to survive. So, we talked, at length, about every aspect of this avocation. She was as amazed at my concern for her truck … and for her personal safety and well-being. An invisible chamber, of private seclusion, formed around us, as we shared perspectives.

It was quite cold in the apartment … so we employed the blanket spoken of in the earlier post. Then, after a while of celebrating the silent, yet eloquent, communication that can be known in holding hands (something that I will yearn for ‘til my last breath) ... without words, a kiss.

The noise of silliness coming from the others became almost an embarrassment … so we pulled the blanket up … over our heads … and formed the magical cocoon that I have spoken of. The rest I have already shared. (Save our, eventually, agreeing that we should go upstairs and “survey the bedroom furnishings” in keeping with the advertised purpose of our being there.) [conspiratorial grin] The Two were so wrapped up in their game that they assumed that their sidecar parties were simply attending to the mundanities that fringed their superficial frolics. (And we quietly giggled our appreciation of their self-absorption.)

So there, Dear Friends, is what is oft referred to as “The Rest of The Story.”

When I received an unexpected invitation to be a Friend (on a social networking site) to a lovely young woman, who I met recently, I happily agreed. She had made a very notable impression on me at our meeting. Beyond her obvious beauty, there was an evident depth of character … and something that rang familiar about her. So, I visited her profile … and was moved by a stirring that was profound and not understood. This 'stirring' kept me awake all night, with a powerful force that was beyond my understanding. It was most unsettling!

Then, in the stillness of early morning … with my first pot of coffee … it all came back. It was a bit over thirty years ago … this moment in my past … but crystalline clear. And I began to understand the similarities in my new friend, which brought that past treasure into my present.

I had met the young lady in question at a gathering of a group of friends … in a place that was very active and energetic … and she was a still pond in the midst of an active sea. There was a depth that was neither presumptuous nor disattached about her. … just as that precious woman had quietly and oh-so-beautifully displayed on that morning … so long ago.

And, on that morning of my recollection, as I recognized who my new friend reminded me of, I was engulfed in the the tsunami of recall that washed over me. It was overwhelming! And, at this writing … four days later … I am still dealing with tears welling up in waves of tender emotion and remembering. Sweet tears that taste of delight and peaceful joy. What a gift!

So, there you are, Dear Reader and Friend. I know not what benefit may be known, by some unknown Individual, from these revelations from my Library of Memory. But, trusting in the wisdom of my unfailing Lady Muse, and in keeping with that life commitment expressed to my former wife, I lay it all out there for the use of whomever may find some encouragement, insight, understanding, or even entertainment, in it. For, ‘tis still true that “My experience is all that I have to offer this world that I live in.”

And I do so … in love.
[smile]

Friday, April 16, 2010

Andy Mackie ... "Harmonica Man"


Something that Steven (my sweet Little Brother) shared with me ...
and I simply MUST share with ... You!
Enjoy!
(I do love You, Ya know?!


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Magician's Blanket



Wrapped in that Blanket … the one recruited from the sofa that we shared … we became Subjects to the transforming powers of life’s Magician.


Concealed from all the world outside, we transformed into something of wonder and delight that had ne’er before been known.

Two people, who barely knew each others’ names …
we became a Oneness that shared a joyful pulse …
breathed a complimentary breath …


moved from the chill of the winter without … to a perspiration of sensual Tropics that existed only in the cocoon of our newly created world.

We touched … melded … melted into a warm liquid that flowed gently and easily over shores of receptive desires.

There were no Circumstances … no details … neither requirements nor responsibilities constraining our openness to each other.

There … on that sofa … in that little apartment … within the folds of that blanket’s security … we found Home.

All that was known then as Reality, has been blown away and scattered as the sands of the Sahara … no one grain known to any other.

What abides today … and lingers as Genuine … is the indelible Truth of our union.

Known to the rational and fact-encumbered mind, as “passing, fleeting, and momentary”... those moments have a legitimacy and substance that is as fresh now, as it was overwhelmingly present, then.

If only I could have had the presence of mind … the wisdom and maturity yet to come … to tell her that she was forever part of me … and wanted there.

But, alas, the cocoon melted away … the oasis of visited Bliss receded into the distance … circumstance and routine pulled us over inevitable horizons.

And here … today … I find us, and our envelope of satisfying fulfillment, comforting and evermore Precious.




(These are the reflections brought to the fore of my awareness, by a new Friend. My deepest and most sincerely admiring thanks to Her.)

Friday, April 09, 2010

Erdrich's "Advice to Myself"

LOUISE ERDRICH: [I’ve]” just got to be Erdrich. I can't do anything else. I'm going to read this, 'cause this is what I finally had to do. I had to give myself advice …”

Excerpted from: the transcript, of Bill Moyers’ interview of Louise Erdrich, found at … http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/04092010/transcript3.html ... and edited by John-Michael (in structure only [spacing, capitalizations, and punctuations] … no text altered)


Advice to Myself
Louise Erdrich

Leave the dishes.

Let the celery rot in the bottom drawer of the refrigerator
and earthen scum harden on the kitchen floor.

Leave the black crumbs at the bottom of the toaster.


Throw the cracked bowl out and don't patch the cup.

Don't patch anything. Don't mend. Buy safety pins.

Don't even sew in a button.


Let the wind have its way … then the earth
that invades as dust … and then the dead,
foaming up, in gray rolls, under the couch.

Talk to them. Tell them they are welcome.


Don't keep all the pieces of the puzzle ...
or the doll's tiny shoes …

D
on't worry
who uses whose toothbrush …
or if anything
matches ... at all.

Except one Word to another … or a Thought.


Pursue the Authentic.

Go after it with all your Heart.

Your Heart, that Place
you don't even think of cleaning out.

That closet stuffed with savage mementos.


Don't sort the paperclips from screws from saved baby teeth
or worry if we're all eating cereal for dinner again.

Don't answer the telephone ... ever ...
or weep over anything that breaks.


Pink molds will grow within those sealed cartons
in the refrigerator.

Accept new forms of life and talk to the dead
who drift in through the screened windows … who collect
patiently on tops of food jars and books.


Recycle the mail, don't read it … don't read anything
except what destroys the insulation
between your Self ... and your Experience.


Thursday, April 01, 2010

Less ... More


My Being is rendered utterly mute by the power of the blossom


I am speechless …


Without vocabulary to adequately express


I have neither thought nor voice …


Sufficient to do justice to her beauty




Then … with the removal of light, with all of its revelations


I enter the realm of another sort of experiential awe


This visitation is suggested by line and contrast


‘Tis the eloquent Silhouette … Mistress of the Minimal


In the absence of detail, my Spirit picks up its brush


Coloring the Image with my own imaginings


The Silhouette invites my fuller participation … deeply within


My spiritual Voice is freed to whisper … even sing … its offerings


I participate, even more fully than possible in the presence of detail


Can it be true … that what seems Less, can be so much … More



IMAGES:
Through the generous courtesy of Ian Britton, freefoto.com
Through the generous courtesy of Jon Sullivan, pdphoto.org
Through the generous courtesy of BBC News

Creative Commons License
Unless expressly stated, all original material, of whatever nature, created by J. Michael Brown (John-Michael) and included in this weblog and any related pages, including the weblog's archives is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 License.