Wednesday, October 9, 2013

out of darkness

The most honest moments of my life have been in longing. Not for your arms or your comfort, which are great, but for death. My journals are full of it. My heart is full of it. Too much to ever forget. How can I tell you this, lover? Without being misunderstood? That life without death is empty.

The summer I went from church to church like a beggar and none would admit me. Even the last (whose doors I thought would open) left me stranded outside the sanctuary. But I stayed. I knelt. And through a crack in the door I felt the slow leak of heavenly air-conditioning on my face and caught how the mingled scent of wooden pews and Frankincense filled the place. How can I tell you this? That I was born impoverished? That I was born from horrifically glorious moments of utter certainty that nothing I can do is right. That I was born as light is born - out of the darkness of night.

where the action is

It's raining in Santa Monica. Were I in Atlanta I would call this a drizzle but here anything that's wet and falls from the sky qualifies as rain. It makes for an interesting mix of odors - of asphalt and atmosphere, potted lavender in one doorway, a homeless person sleeping in the next.

I'm not complaining, but too much sunshine lends an invisibility to things after a while. Weather changes can inspire us to look at the same things differently, or look somewhere else entirely. Driven indoors I remember that, while California is endowed with great weather and an abundance of natural beauty, not everything worthwhile happens outside. 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Viewing

his nose hadn’t been that big.
his face had been round,
not sallow and oval.
his hands alone were
recognizable; their rough
strength knew the way
of the soil and also
the Gardener’s secret:
casement broken,
the seed is the sapling is
the tree is the blossom is
the apple is a glass of
spiced cider or Nana’s
last jar of preserves.
of these nothing is lost
but it’s not understood.
we step forward unsure,
are unconvinced
by the makeup.
of the two, death
is the greater deceit.