Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Mad Manifesto


Mad Manifesto

Ian,     
I found this when I was reading Luke this morning. It's about my walk with God; no, I guess more like my fragile, sore, wounded, feeble limping with God. I haven't been walking so well lately. Like Miss Phoebe I have been struck by truck again.

The brutal rage of grief is so hard to carry, baby. It's a life saving instinct, but it can only carry me so far before it's burning leaves me alone on charred ground. 
Truth is, my scorched earth anger is just the back side of desperate sadness and longing for you. I long for you baby boy, and I long for God to gather me up and make me safe; and love me. 

I need the food of His love, and my anger is the hunger pains of starvation.

Did Jesus know our rage? Does Jesus know my rage now? Is it time to write a new manifesto for my spirit?  Luke showed me a slightly different angle, a new direction, buried in the 6 stories of Christ I love the most....a woman anointing his feet with tears and oil, the four seeds, the calming of the sea,  the demons in the pigs, sending forth the 12, and feeding the 5000. Mysteries, stories. I've read them so many times, but this morning my spirit heard this. 
Maybe my inner manifesto to God comes to this...
One: Listen......listen hard when I am angry, listen when I am scared, listen when God whispers....and whisper He so often does, as soft as the fart of a mouse. In as many moments as I can manage, listen....
Two: Love......Sunflower up. Turn my face toward this almost inaudible love. Reach my neck north toward Love. Reach my cheeks, eyes, nose, chin, mouth, and forehead toward the love and listen. Feel what this does to my heart, inhale it in. Exhale and learn. Love...
Three: Believe......Look beyond the barking of my rage and fight to hold onto the simple and maybe ridiculous notion that my heart knows. "If I am going to trust You with anything, I will trust You with everything." (Kathy Drago)
My outer expression of my manifesto to God comes to this...

One: Speak......deliver my gratitude to someone or something whenever I dig myself out of pain enough to do it. Smile, praise, appreciate You where ever I might see You. Give You some fucking credit for not turning away from my wild rantings with a Godly eye-roll and abandoning me to the gloom. If I can't feel grateful for anything else, appreciate at least THAT. Sit in the nest of knowing and give gratitude with my rest. As I think about it, gratitude these days, is something else besides a holy "thank you" bubbling from my lips. 
Gratitude can be sigh of surrender on the cusp of sleep. By God, I can do that. I can exhale and save the battle for another day. The softening around the lacy edges of my brittle nerves when I know You haven't left me.
Two: Release....all my human partners, friends, family...release them from the grip of my interminable disappointment in them.  Give them a Presidential Pardon....or 50 acres and a mule....unshackle them from my anger at not loving me enough to fix my shit show. I know they can't.
Extend, as much as I am able every day, unconditional forgiveness to them that is guilty, them that ain't, and them in the dangerous middle.Love them when they don't know how to love me, because as the Tai Chi practice I learned at 25 years says....
I love you
I bless you
I forgive you
I release you
after all, Anne Lamotte advises....
"If you are going to learn to practice forgiveness, you might want to start with something smaller than Hitler".
Three: Feed.....someone or something. Just meet some need, do the next thing and tie another knot in the broken chord of this net of life. If love is the pulsing force that binds and knits us all together...animal, plant, spirit, human, then perhaps a small, secret act of tribal defense is to feed some small part of some small thing, human or otherwise. Just do it when I can.  It's ok if it's just a bit of bacon or a tender thought. 
So I hand my manifesto back to you, Ian. Your homecoming 10 days ago, icy norther as a marching band, playing you in, didn't change what came next. You didn't stop Phoebe from biting at the wheels of a trailer, or my other injuries that came pouring in that week....More damn pain...but it was instead, a soft lift from behind, beside, beneath, and above me. I was suddenly carried and didn't even know I was going to need that. Not so much a gurney  as a thousand young hands reaching up as I fell backwards into a mosh pit.

Like the silly, absurdly and completely understood and real appearance of a butterfly on a sick dog's head, saying....
"It's gonna be ok, Momma."

                                                                                             Momma loves you too, Ian



"See the dog and butterfly
Up in the air he likes to fly
Dog and butterfly
Below she had to try
She roll back down to the warm soft ground, laughing
She don't know why, she don't know why
Dog and butterfly
Well I stumbled upon your secret place
Safe in the trees you had tears on your face
Wrestling with your desires frozen strangers
Stealing your fires, the message hit my mind
Only words that I could find"
Heart

Thursday, October 18, 2018





Blue Norther




You came blowing back in before the blue norther Sunday, like kettling buzzards. For a while you have been silent and distant and unreachable. Then you came and I felt the height and weight and breadth of you all around me; in front, behind and beside me. I felt your warm arms like a shield.

So much the same as in your waking life but different. Strong and well as a ripe melon. Gone the parts blemished and bitten by life.

You came because it was a bad week, but then again you always came for me. Such a good son you have been. All through this life.

Liking and believing in me; understanding and validating.

You did it when you were a small boy,
You did it as a teen when most hate their parents,
You did it behind my back, speaking words of honor of me to others. 
You did it openly and lovingly.

You did it when you were starting to get sick, coming to me when I needed you and calling me, fighting with me and forgiving me and letting me forgive you.

And you are here now, not a sick young man, but a vital, pulsing force of life. You know our little family is shattered and you are bringing the glue. Whatever you have been up to you are changing yet still the same. When you came back Sunday, is was hot and still like the sucking in of air before the plunge. Monday came the winds and rain, and the temp had dropped 40 degrees. A pal of winter was evident, draped over everything. It was in this surge of nature that you came back.

It happens like that, you know....
Things change suddenly.
Bigger, stronger, present
Gathering me up before the storm.
And me relaxing into your arms.

You have surpassed me, I think you might be the parent and I the child.