I’ve been posting this on my Facebook page for a few years now so I thought this year I’d share it here.
At least once a year:
Watch the sun rise.
Watch the sun set.
Stare at the stars in wonderment.
Witness the handle of the Big Dipper pointing towards the north star.
Listen to birdsong.
Taste grass and leaves.
Pallet a flower.
Watch a bee find its way home.
And stop a car in the middle of the street with flailing arms and panic shouts.
We are not alone.
Never forget we belong
Picture taken in Deadwood, SD.
What if people were more like dogs? Happy on tap. Ready to protect on a moments notice. Always there when you need them. Always ready to love and be loved.
Want to meet someone new? Walk up to them, offer them your butt, sniff at theirs a little, and you’re either friends for life or mortal enemies. There’s no real in between for a dog and they figure out in seconds what can take us years to figure out. Genius!
Dogs don’t age either. Not really. Not if they’re taken care of. Mine, a chow/coyote mix by the name of Brown Dog (because “Reddish Coydog” is just too much to say), will be 16 this year and he looks and acts like he’s still 5. I imagine I’ll just come home one day and he’ll be laying on the couch like a stuffed animal with a smile on his face in one final act of defiance.
I hope I go like that. On the couch. Smiling. Or out for a walk. Smiling. Or making love. Smiling. I don’t really care where it is as long as I’m smiling when it happens. I’m sure Brown will be. He smiles a lot.
Dogs are a happy lot. Give them a stick or a ball to chase or chew on or a stuffed animal playmate and they’ll frolic and roll and tug and hump the stuffing out of their fluffy girlfriend all the while swaggering and smiling.
Yeah. It would be nice if we were a little more like dogs. So easy to please. So ready to please.
But then he did take a dump in the middle of the street before we got to the dog park where I wrote this, and he does have apretty short attention span, so maybe not exactly like dogs, but a roll in the grass does look nice. I’ll be back in a minute.
Image of Brown Dog in the Badlands of ND.
You see that black box in my truck window with the red light? That’s a dual facing camera. It captures nearly everything I do. We’re supposed to believe it protects us as well as the company but it rarely feels like it. It mostly feels like an unwelcome intrusion.
Especially on days like today because today I am feeling overwhelmed and would like to yell and cry a little but, with Big Brother observing everything I do, including tapping this out on my phone, I find myself holding it in instead.
You see that green outhouse in the picture? That’s where I’ll go to shed a few silent tears for now. The yelling will have to wait until later because it can raise eyebrows in an outhouse.
There’s no particular reason I feel like this. Just life in general. I sometimes feel like I set myself up to fail. Or that for all my good intentions I keep missing the mark. Or that the changes I’ve made in my life after awakening are just too little too late. Or that my body is betraying me. Or that I will never be “good enough”.
Today I feel a combination of all those and more. I know it will pass, and I’m grateful for the insights I gain from exploring these feelings, I just wish I didn’t have to hide in an outhouse to do it.
The wind in my face on a hot day
While I strain and swear
Wrench in hand
Making repairs on those things
That seem ever broken
Because my wallet doesn’t weigh enough
To spread the wealth
The salty sweat as it touches my lips
The water that tempts and taunts
The icy brew that lightens the load however briefly
The sun behind the limbs
Of the giant pecan tree
That gave up the last of its nuts and leaves
Yet still provides
Even in its final days
Shade and shelter
The sound of music
Through the abused speakers
Of a radio new before cell phones
The phone I tap with fingers calloused
From too many hours
It’s bright screen repeating my words back to me
Scribing the love I feel
That makes me smile or cry
That drives the words that escape me
While listening to songs I don’t know the words to
Wrenching on broken things under the shade
Of love itself
It can be terrifying and difficult to find ourselves in a place we don’t want to be. We can feel like somehow we deserve to be where we are. That we will ever fail because somehow we’re unworthy of those things we want.
But where we are now is just a place we are passing by along the journey that is our life. It is not our destination and these stops and bypasses are the things that lead us to where we want to be. Where we will be.
Continue the journey with hope. Find gratitude where you can. Because no matter where you are, the path you are on will always lead you home.
blown on the wind
or carried by bird or squirrel
in fertile soil
a spot perfectly suited
for its specific needs
with fragile fingers
to reach the moisture
that feeds it’s spine
to sprout tiny limbs
which slowly reach out
from the warm blanket of its birth
towards the warm glow of Heaven
in such slow
that its progress is marked in decades
in the rings of its trunk
and its family is generations
that carry its seed
to other fields
to claw and scrape and sometimes
long enough to become home
to their own generations
until one day
hundreds of years
of lives later
it is in the way
holding up progress
it is hacked and sawed
and burned for a road
or a home
or a hotel
or a parking lot
and I am reminded
that in life
there are no take backs
I can’t go back to where I began
reach out into the world
in a different direction
the paths I took
that got me here
or retrace the steps
that carried me to this point
sitting naked in a hot tub
and sipping rum
and allowing the events of my life
events that led me to a walk down this most beautiful avenue
lined with oaks
planted with purpose
full of peace
brothers and sisters
destined to live their lives
to their very end
still digging my roots deeper
my limbs higher
have every opportunity
as a gift from the Divine
to expand those roots at will
to places of my design
of Her design
I can never go back
and at any time
though I am still just a seed
Picture taken at Avenue of the Oaks.