You Know the Old Cliché

You know the old cliché:
Today is the first day
of the rest of your life.
A theologian/writer wrote
that today is the only day.
And so I awoke today, the
day after Thanksgiving Day,
my only day.
I started reading my daily
meditations and poems in
my inbox today.
My wife just told me that
someone was killed in
Black Friday mall mayhem
in Alabama sometime in
the early morning hours
of today.
Today is that person’s
first, only and now last day
I’m sorry to say.
I wonder, if that person had
survived, what that person
would have to say
about the preciousness
of this — the only day,
or maybe that person
would simply say
that he or she regretted
not getting that “whatever”
and resented the one who
grabbed it out of his or her hands
on the great Black Friday mall
mayhem and melee sale today.

He’s So Proud

He’s so proud.
He has worn the same
waist size for thirty-five years.
He would love to hoist one
with great cheer for all those years
but a beer gut would make
that waist size disappear.
But he does acknowledge in silent gratitude
to the pants makers
for their sly, marketing attitude.
They know the male ego
so they invented the “relaxed fit,”
so he could keep his expanding
tummy tucked into the thirty-five year fit,
and brag that he has kept
the same waist size all those years,
but even then, to be honest,
he has to suck it in a bit
just to close the top button
in the size 36 pants with the “relaxed fit.”

on the street where you live

we live in a panopticon —
where we are always under
surveillance (seen everywhere),
being watched — cameras every-
where (they just saw that
hyphen), eyes in the computer
(be careful of those sites;
you know the ones), eyes in
the ever-so-smart tv (what
are you doing with your hands?),
and then there are the neigh-
bors (oh, they were always
there)…once in a while it
turns out for the good like
when cops are videoed
blasting away at unarmed
blacks…so, the panopticon
may not be the worst place
to live as long as you watch
your p’s and q’s…you can
always just pull the covers
over your head…don’t turn
on the flashlight…it is
really smart.

Miraculously Complex Processes

“…as you read these words on a page or a screen, they register as black lines
on a white background in your primary visual cortex. If the process stopped
at that point, you wouldn’t be reading at all. To read, your brain, through
miraculously complex processes that scientists are still figuring out, needs
to forward those black letters on to association-cortex regions such as the
angular gyrus, so that meaning is attached to them; and then on to language-
association regions in the temporal lobes, so that the words are connected
not only to one another but also to their associated memories and given
richer meanings. These associated memories and meanings constitute a
‘verbal lexicon,’ which can be accessed for reading, speaking, listening,
and writing.” *

A man and his wife watched a movie where the
antagonist shot off the tops of his victims’
heads and placed a snowman’s head in their

place. It was horrifyingly gruesome, but not
until the man read the words above did the
enormity of the horror of the acts sink in.

The man thought, the brain performs “miracu-
lously complex processes,” — miraculously
complex processes — the irony being that

the killer used seemingly simple processes
(capture, aim, shoot) which, in fact, were
miraculously complex processes to destroy

the miraculously complex processes of others.
The man thought, it is bad enough to kill
even the simplest forms of life, but to blow

away ever so blithely that which is miracu-
lously complex seems to up the ante on
monstrosity. The man continued to think

about the whole process: We then use miracu-
lously complex processes to hunt, find and
stop the destructive use of miraculously

complex processes often violently. The man
wondered, is such the nature of war — using
MCP to terminate MCP? And then in a moment

of spiritual reflection the man prayed, “May
You, the Author of all Miraculously Complex Pro-
cesses, have mercy on our Miraculously Complex

but ever so often demonically destructive souls
for destroying that which You, the Author of
all Miraculously Complex Processes, created.”

*”Secrets of the Creative Brain,” Nancy E. Andreasen,
Atlantic, June 26, 2014

She Passed Through

He read a meditation 
     about a person’s 
                   personal 
experience of  being -------- thrust 
into the abyss of grief. 

The words were beautiful and beautifully 
written about the most
horrendous experience imaginable.
 
He didn’t want to imagine.
 
He couldn’t believe the beautiful words
and then he found himself 
immersed in the beauty
of the mysterious mystery 
of life and 
                         death
in 

the midst and aftermath
of the --------------------------- horror.
  
(The person wasn’t saved from the horror.) 
 
She was surrounded with unimaginable 
love that would 

suffer with her, 
enter into her horror and 
hold her

as she (didn’t get over as the world 
advises because it can't stand to look at the pain)

"passed through" into 
the 
     eternal 
         presence 
              of 
                agape,

                      now.

For Shame

He heard something that was salaciously juicy.
It was something that certainly could be.
While…there was no real support for its veracity,
it certainly was a real doozy.
So, he kept it under wraps till just the right opportunity.
He, with great moral pride in protecting his source’s identity,
passed along that which was salaciously juicy.
He said, “Immediately upon hearing the rumor,
her eyes looked down from looking at me.”
Then he knew he was filled with hypocrisy,
confirming his self-recrimination for telling that doozy.
Next time to follow his better angels, he vowed shamefacedly,
he would bury anything salaciously juicy
in a grave for the old, dry, dead and dusty
rather than ever again pass along anything unjustly.

Mommy and Daddy Live in a House

Mommy and Daddy live in a house
that isn’t worth as much as a house
in another town. My school doesn’t
get as much money for me and my
fellow students as the schools in
that other town. I’m a citizen/
student of my town, which is in my
state, which is in my country but
I’m not equal to the citizen/students
of the other town in my state and
in my country. Why? Because Mommy
and Daddy’s house isn’t worth as
much as a house in that other town.
I guess, then, that I’m not worth
as much as the kids in that other
town, am I?

Dancing the Dervish Dance

I like the word three 
and triptych and trilogy —
three, an odd number and yet, somehow 
complete but, seemingly an invitation for 
others to meet and greet. 

Writers write trilogies — a series — 
a beginning, a middle, an end, together a 
resolution in the making, a circle, 
round and round and round, whirring and whirling round. 

Visual artists make triptych — a series — 
a beginning, a middle, an end, together a 
resolution in the making, a circle, 
round and round and round, whirring and whirling round. 

Three dimensional art makes three — 
a beginning, a middle, an end, 
front, side and back, together a 
resolution in the making, 
a circle, round and round 
and round, whirring and whirling round.  

God as a trinity — a series — 
a beginning, a middle, an end, 
Father, Son, Spirit, 
Mother, Daughter, Sophia, 
Creator, Redeemer, Sustainer, 
together a resolution in the making, 
a circle, round and round and round, 
whirring and whirling round. 

Speeches come in parts three; 
sermons come in parts three; 
treaties come in parts three; 

We come in threes — 
a beginning, a middle, an end, 
together a resolution in the making, 
a circle, round and round and round, 
whirring and whirling round. 

And we meet and greet the three — 
entering the trilogy, the triptych, the Trinity, 
entering me and me in thee and we in Thee
round and round, whirring and whirling round 
go we — 

dancing the dervish dance of eternity.

But there are still those 
who say, "We four and no more," unfortunately.

Prelude to the Fulfillment of Love

He sits at the bedside of the dying.
The room fills with quiet.
It is as if everyone is meditating —
personal yet communal not private.

The peace that passes understanding
emanates through the room.
She waits patiently for the moment of handing
herself to that which is coming soon.

He gently kisses her forehead.
He feels her soft breath like a zephyr.
Loved ones rise and gather at the bed.
Then her breathing stops altogether.

They say goodbye and know,
at that exact moment,
into the fulfillment of love,
she lets go.