Bird and Lemon Reenact Scenes from "Easy Rider"

Bird: You know, this used to be a helluva good country. I can't understand what's gone wrong.
Whale:  Everybody got chicken, that's what happened, man. Hey, we can't even get into a motel. You dig? They're scared, man.
Lemon:  Can someone with hands help me get this helmet off?
Bird: Oh, they're not scared of you. They're scared of what you represent to 'em.
Whale: All we represent to them, man, is somebody needs a haircut.
Bird: What you represent to them is freedom.
Lemon:  If you each lift one side, it'll pop off...
Whale: What the hell's wrong with freedom, man? That's what it's all about.
Bird: Oh yeah, that's right, that's what it's all about, all right. But talkin' about it and bein' it - that's two different things.
Lemon: Maybe I'll just try scrapin' my head against this tree again.  Can someone with legs carry me back to the tree?
Bird:  'Course, don't ever tell anybody that they're not free 'cause then they're gonna get real busy killin' and maimin' to prove to you that they are. Oh yeah, they're gonna talk to you about individual freedom, but they see a free individual, it's gonna scare 'em.
Whale: Mmmm, well, that don't make 'em runnin' scared.
Bird: No, it makes 'em dangerous. Nik, nik, nik, nik, nik, nik, nik, nik - Swamp.
Whale:  Heh heh swaaaamp.
Lemon:  [sigh]....swamp.


every sunday I think about i'm not there much lately, and how I haven't taken the kids.
it's such a contrast to how deeply we were immersed for years.
is it passive to abstain?  to exercise my right not to go?  the right I never knew I had?
is it bad parenting? 
hmmm...I guess that depends on what you want.
[rubs tired eyes and scratches over-analyzing head]...
I want them to know they are loved, and that attendance is not a pre-requisite for being loved.
to be fair, I've not been a part of churches that stated that as a rule.  however, if you dress it up and say, "well, god doesn't REQUIRE that you go, he just wants you to go because you shouldn't skip gathering together with his people.  it will edify you and build you up.  you will learn about him and the world."
true or not, that feels awfully close to a pre-requisite.
I won't put that on my children just now, not while even i'm still struggling to believe god isn't mad at me if I don't go.
for now, I will take a rest from the study.  a break from digging and reading and finding him in a book.  I will risk finding him in faces and flowers, in quiet and music.  if he's in us, he will find me.  i'm safe.
feeling guilty about poor attendance isn't the "holy spirit convicting."  it's a product of subtle pressure placed on a very exhausted rule-following, people pleaser.
don't get the two mixed up.
and, if possible, please be very cautious not to mix up anyone else.
there are a lot of us out here who are fragile.

redriving the nails

do not speak to me of 
His elusive will
all nails in my coffin
rocks in my rucksack
thick fingers wrapped around my skinny arms pinning them down to my sides and rousing the anger and strength of a thousand panicking horses trapped in a burning barn

speak no more of those because- even if you are right--
you're my stumbling block.
I can't get to those words without free arms
without being able to wave them and scream

but do speak to me of
dirty feet and basins
soft pats and tight hugs
ears to listen
words that are heard
loose arms free to gesture, not flail, because they're unpinned.
hands to reach turned up and empty
ready to receive instead of block and guard.
tell me about purity, given not demanded,
naps and sabbaths
warm baths and and white towels.

rebellion's not always rebellion
sometimes it's right
sometimes it's loud but true
and until it hits the right ear
it can't speak politely,
but it shouldn't have to apologize.
so listen to the profane despair
unclamp your ears.
maybe the despair can calm and round out its sharp edges if you don't act so soft
if it can suffer it, surely you can listen to it

soul day

do you know the wonder of your soul?
I can tell you don't by how quickly you nodded, good student.
look and hear, darty eyes and doubtful ears,
you are wondrous.
your heart is intricately woven, with ever deepening multiplying layers,
heights, depths and capacities.
the things you dare to dream and hope--
the daring is art in itself.  your soul holds these now.

because how much does tangible mean anyway?
what are arms and legs, faces and fannies
when such a soul you hold?
is it a gentle bird chirp or a roar for justice?
you hold secrets we cannot even guess.
no, tangible isn't everything, but since you have them,
we can watch those hands and faces for clues
of the love you are.

from deep in your heart,
the curiosity creeps up through your throat
rises into those eyes
spreads from your chest out over shoulders carrying burdens we don't even know,
gliding down lean arms, tracing lined palms
and beading like drops of water along a thread
into those calloused fingertips.
we will watch those eyes and see them seeing us.
we will track those hands as they flutter and pat,
work and weave their way through the world.

all beautiful parts, but just mentions really,
just hints at that rocking woven filling soul.
who can carry all of that about each day and not be extraordinary?
don't forget.


how could he create us too wretched to look upon?
did the artist of the world call us to himself, head turned away in disgust,
feeling for us like a woman searching for the light switch in the dark?
then, once we are "in the light,"
he quickly tosses that righteous robe over us
so his eyes can bear to see us?
are his eyes so righteous they're fragile?
must a fearless creator consider being soiled by association?
and then, in an instant --
ta da, you're clean!
ta da, you're in!
ta da, you're beautiful to him!

is it true?
is it false?
that's not even the point anymore.
some will say "it's true.  you told it wrong."
i say,
i'm a really good listener,
so maybe you did.

jack london

you think you know someone...
we woke and chatted like best friends.  I told her thanks for letting me spend most of last year with my face in her neck.  took her for morning walk, and for first time in a month, let her off the leash for 45 seconds to chase a squirrel.  she did (yes it was cute) then promptly walked a foot to the left and rolled that same neck in something that can only be described as "innards," then as I was shrieking for her to stop, and scrambling to re-leash her, I guess she remembered she was in a Jack London novel, and walked another foot to the right and ate a pile of hummingbird bones.  you could just tell -  they were that cute.  then I thought, "what would Alexander Supertramp clean off innards with?"  so I rubbed her neck with a big wad of clover and walked her home disgusted.
she looks ashamed now, but I swear she strutted.


yes, he was bear with a keytar, but he hadn't always been.
at one time, he was only a bear with a flute.

you see, Gavin's mother was all about woodwinds.  she used to tell him, "All you need Son, is the breath within you, and you can make the music of angels.  in the bible, they only use wind instruments."  and for a long time, Gavin tried.  he took lesson after lesson, practiced in his room for hours, listened to the great flautists of his time like - well, we all know who they are - why waste time naming them?  but try as he might, he just couldn't find the joy.  the angels weren't on his side.  the wind wasn't within him. 
plus the flute made him look fat.

one evening, he stood before the full length mirror in his room, his claws scrabbling to cover those buttons on the flute that are called - well, we all know what they're called, why waste time naming them?  that night, he gave up the flute for good.  he thought to himself, "mother, I tried.  the breath within me just isn't enough.  sin or not, I need some fucking electricity."

and the rest is history.
or will be.