Archives for category: Jesus

The rock star, exposed soul and pecs with a rousing speech in front of thousands supporting tolerance (always good, right?) by announcing that anyone should be able to love who they want to love.

Oh. Really?

And then within a week I saw a piece in NYT’s Modern Love section devoted to the musings of a woman who had, apparently learned stuff from sleeping with married men.

Good thing people can “love who they want to love,” right?

In both situations it seems like the easiest way to strike a balance between my dismay and anger at the public aggrandizement of poorly lit behavior and my own private belief is to focus on that one, badly abused, word-

Love used to mean something. It used to be anchored to some pretty badass acts of self-sacrifice, public service, private solace, intimate compassion.

By co-opting a word of profound philosophical and etymological roots to stand in for other things, some of them very unlovely, transgressive, even illegal, we stand on the brink of meaningless cultural narcissism.

All while we insist on calling it

Love.

Advertisements

Dearest E,

I know you struggle with the see-saw conflict between knowing I love and see you and being a messy, sin-riddled person.

My love is manifest in my ability to save you through years of squalor.

Make that mystery what you focus on, a train-your-eyes-to-focus exercise.

Focus on my voice, character, ability to be who you need in all things.

Me the remedy

Friend

Listener

Shepherd-Doctor-Advocate

And don’t forget what I told you about losing things, the freedom of truth, narrow paths and where they lead.

All the big and small ways

I show you

I love you.

J.

I started this blog a few years ago when I was trying to tell and grieve-through a pretty ugly and unhappy-ending story.

Somewhere(s) along the line I began to question whether any of it would do any good. Were the words like trees falling without listeners?

I once read about one of many really awful and probably unnecessary studies. Rats were dropped into buckets then fished out after a few minutes. Others were left to drown. The rats who had been fished out could keep swimming for much longer than those who had never been “rescued.”

I have to assume this was supposed to be a study of hope? It seems to be more about the human capacity to willfully ignore suffering.

But I digress.

Times I have empathized with the bedraggled bucket rats.

But words do matter.

Your voice is heard.

So keep singing.

And if you can’t sing-whisper…

Cry, shout, or stomp.

I stood on an accurate scale and despaired at its arbitrary number.  Then whined to God: why can’t I lose weight?

His answer: trust your body.

As usual, for Him, anchoring words.

Perhaps youth is always hubris 

Although not always so baldly unhinged

I can still see

The mistaken room, ensuing melee

As though an intimate troupe of primate acrobats 

Had used their clever

Prehensile tails to

Tornado the borrowed room

Swing from the wooden dowel in the closet

Tear the beloved childhood

Memories apart, just words on pages

isolated pictures

can summon the ghosts

Of me and you and us

All gone now

Illusion I could

change you into angels

Can’t 

Sleep or

Administer the antidote

With words of

Your mispelled sins

All our

broken 

Promises rise

To life.

I tie bandanas on each

Think she should name them

At some point in time

We must all name them

The right and the left

Outstretched arms

He did not reply and Pilate was amazed

Looked into the crowd of angry…

Helpless, broken 

Justice, mercy

Sorrow, hope

Pairs of things

With ancient, original and sacred names on them

File into the ark

Mute and two by two

Flood or resurrection

boat or Cross

Immissa, patibulum

Someone must carry them outside the sanctuary
Up the hill 

To his end

And our beginning 

Freed to walk, or even fly

But tied to Him, forever 

first the don’ts:

Don’t wax

Don’t spray tan anything 

Don’t take it too seriously

Don’t expect to win

Don’t do anything you wouldn’t want your grandchildren to see

Now the dos:

Pray

Accept your body

Embrace the humor

Ask why?

Honor the other participants

Give sound advice

Listen to their stories

Verify they are old enough for what is about to happen

Draw strength from the Cross

(Also, it helps if you can get some practice.  Things that helped me to prepare for my bikini contest were thankless jobs and other contests where I knew I would not win.)