Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New Year's Resolutions Test List

- Win more lotteries
- Move all holidays to workdays
- Catch all missed trains, planes etc.
- Maximize paid vacation
- Find all lost things
- Remain in love
- Abandon possessiveness
- Practice free will
- Honor habits
- Maximize portions

Saturday, December 26, 2015

                                                                              (fm journal archives)

I shot an arrow into the air, it would be falling to earth sometime later I didn’t have a clue where, since it was a 60-pound-pull recurved bow and I (like the several friends who were there that day) was an invincible 16 years of age, so launched the arrow with all my strength straight up into the gusty autumn day, where the dot disappeared at about 250 feet over a cow-empty pasture-- and who at that age could have foreseen the fact, let alone cared, that an arrow can suddenly be gone up there like that, somewhere high over several heads? WOW!
     Now this was life, this was adventure-- until the realization that the pointed killmissile would in a few seconds be coming down somewhere of which we were all integral parts. I had been tested by the world before and I had survived, but this was different: I had no decisive role to play here, as I’d had with the sudden effortless grab of a high tree limb, the lightning flick of a steering wheel or a quick reflexive grip on a bridge girder. Those of us out there under that lethal umbrella of arrow that would be landing any second were now all in the same pasture, over which we were running like mad in every direction, because where the hell to?
     The wisdom of foresight belongs to those who survive, as teenagers often do for one reason or another; at the time, on the scene, none of us had any spatial or directional preference, really, because by this late moment before imminent death from above, “where” had no more meaning than “when”; even an Olympian couldn’t run far and fast enough (300+ meters in 15 seconds, at a retroguess) through deep grass dotted with slickery cowpats.
    What’s more, we had no idea where the overhead streaking microdot of death - were it even visible - would land; anywhere was the answer: any point you are running toward was where: how the hell could you know? That was god’s department. 
     But you’ve got to do something, it’s just not teenagerly possible to stand there awaiting the descent of death with so much space around, instinct insisting you at least make it hard for death to find you, plus you feel it even more if you just stand there, with time to imagine the high-speed metal tip penetrating its fated target, but you have no steel umbrella or tank lid, so running for your life is the best bet and at that age you do run well, so at least during those precious seconds remaining before skydeath you run zigzag in all directions, as away from all fears...
     What a condensed life metaphor it is in retrospect, an invisible arrow now descending as fast as it shot off on its arc, while we all live on until. It was life or death right then and there for me and Mick, Jackie, Teddy, George, Paul, Marty, maybe Charlie and a couple other guys but we all survived, at least that day; we must’ve learned something from it, to use as we went on to disappear into our own skies...  
     But then, after so many tingly seconds had passed and we were all still alive and unhurt: Where’s the arrow, let’s do it again!   
     When you reach elder, you get to wonder how you made it this far...

Friday, December 18, 2015

Prayer of My Granddaughter

I give no faith 
to the ways of madeup gods,
but watching my young granddaughter
take a moment from play
to pray by herself
at the grave of her pet,
I know there is prayer.

There is a turning inward 
to all the self,
a proving of the universe.
No need for a god,
She is the god.
She is the universe living,
the circle closing
embracing its own.

She stands at her best,
folds her hands
bows her head
summons a silent blessing
from the place of places
that powers the heart,
ends with her own amen.

When she turns to play again
there is more to the air.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

      (from unposted archives)

Gardeners, like leaders of nations and global corporations (who, however, have clean fingernails) are continuously confronted with key decisions involving allocation of territory, life and death, choices dependent upon time, weather, experience and myriad other background factors of infinite combination and no possible resolution, like the mind of a US president earlier in this century. 

With succulents, as with legumes and drupes, there is no going back. Ask the guy who ran Enron, ask W, ask Bill Gates, ask anyone making key decisions and they’ll tell you, as soon as they have a minute, that yes-- tomatoes, snap peas and squashes, like honest auditors, software and Afghanistan, can be unforgiving. But that’s part of life in the fast lane, just as it is with backup cucumbers: you have to move on. Like time, markets and battle theaters, Cucumbers wait for no man.  

It is just such a dilemma that I’m facing at the moment, now that the hurricane has passed on by, the goodgod rain has stopped and the sun is shining, in between intense downpours: I have to do something about the backup cucumbers I got because the extended sunlessness was not what the early cukes desired, any more than the early tomatoes had. I got backup tomatoes, too, but tomatoes are more demanding and less patient, sort of like Afghanistan, so I had to deal with them first, but that was a no-brainer, since tomatoes give up quickest; but cucumbers, as fragile as they appear, can and will hold on to their last yellowing minileaf. 

It’s like Ron Lay with honesty, Gates with Netscape Navigator, or Obama with the Bush legacy: what do you do? In the former case, where there’s big money involved and stockholders matter, so you turn on a dime is what you do. You get on your gardening clothes and you go out there: get your tools and dig in, get to work, make the hard-nosed decisions, get it done: WHAM: backup cukes in the ground, in the form of Internet Explorer built into Windows, thriving in new atmosphere. Or you can take the traditional political course and largesse the money gardens of your buddies with another 600 billion or so early cukes, but not at your friends’ expense; distant low-and mid-income residents of no connection will cover the cost of the extended mistake a second time (see gardening records of earlier presidents, governors, mayors). More a matter of inner circles than money.

So I guess I’ll plant the backup cukes where the snow peas were, when it’s politically safe. At least I don’t have stockholders or a misguided electorate or a Federal Reserve Bank that’s not Federal or Reserve or a Bank.

Vegetables never lie like that.