There are certain moments in our lives which mark us, and define who we will become, in their passing.
Singular moments; not in our choice in choosing, but that they just happen.
All thought and emotion affected in the subsequent moments are but reflections in these ripples, as they spread; equally within, as they do outward.
What's a person to do?
Anything; everything; nothing . . . these are our choices, as we act upon these moments.
I’ve known love, in so many ways…
The way my Mom would stick her tongue out, part-way past her lips—her breath whispering across—in concentration as she pressed the cloth into the needle of a sewing machine as she made my Sister and I pieces of clothing for us to wear in times when off-the-rack items just didn’t fit the moment, our mood or our wallet.
When my Dad brought me a cold 6-pack of 7-Up as reward for my having mowed the grass for the first time.
The look in my Grandfather’s eyes resting upon my hands as he passed the hatchet into them, telling me that it was I who must form the choice of compassion for the 3’ catfish I had managed to drag to shore over that long, long afternoon beside the lake house he and my Grandmother had made; with their own hands; painfully, carefully, and with great joy in success; that which they shared so completely with me as if I had been party to its construction.
The happiness of receiving the patterned ‘cowboy’ shirt, buttons in-laid with rainbow-refracting pieces of abalone; such a smart collar; so proud I was in my ability in wearing this to my third-grade class photo-shoot.
When my Sister hugged me close after I apologized for deeds done in the ignorance of my youth.
Seeing a baby snake break-free of its shell, so, so slowly; wondrous, painful rapture reflected in its eyes.
The way my Dad's hands caressed the raw clay upon his spinning wheel as he shaped the pottery he did sell to provide us with a place to live, clothes to wear, and food to eat.
The first time I looked into a girl’s eyes as she said “I love you.”
When David 'The Prophet’ gifted me a ring he had crafted with his own hands that first year in art school (then, thirty in the past), in appreciation for my offer to share dinner with him; declining gracefully, as that would make the next night’s hunger ever-so-much more painful in its existence.
The look in her eyes when I asked my lover—my Friend—to give-up everything we had created, and journey home to her family; pain in the awareness that she needed it to be I to be the one to set her free.
When Little Man climbs my back in the dark, early hours of the morning, making mush-mush before he comes to a rest—in the shape of a Volkswagen Bug—along my spine.
Waking atop a valley ridge, above a river in Nevada, to seeing the Milky Way as if for the very first time, its essence spread over me like a full rainbow, each star laid fractally-intertwined with all the others; this infinity realized through the absence of the light pollution that had clouded my vision each night, previously.
I could go-on for forty-seven years in the recollection of these things; but, well, it would take forty-seven more to recount them all….
Time be time.
So, so short; so, so sweet.
When I was nineteen years of age, I met a man, and he talked with me about things I had not previously thought.
Many nights were had discussing the tangental interconnectedness of music, and musicians as they shared their song; the creativity lying not merely in their innate skill, but that they shared their songs with all the others; over, and over; again, and again.
The holographic nature of our incarnation as beings woven into each other by threads of light--each particle a wave--the crests of which grow-thick in such being, reflecting all the others, each lit within by virtue of all the others.
[…aphorisms at the time, in my having not actually experienced enough to have thought about such things…]
“Where there is fear, no love can exist.”
“Honesty; appreciation; respect—THESE form the core of our love, as we express it.”
He shared that love is all there is . . . all else branches-out from, and reflects, this fact. No conditions; no considerations; no hesitation; no end to it all.
Accepting me in my entirety as a Child of God, he spoke honestly of the time when he did first hear god speak.
Always a curious person, I asked him of this, and he gladly, eloquently described all the ways of this event: where he was, the passing of this conversation and how these things had affected him.
I will not sully the importance of his description, as the truth of this moment as revealed in the god-light reflected in his eyes bears no proper, worded description.
“How will I know such a thing?”
“You will come to know this through its self-evidence” was all he was able to say.
In our time, he never--ever--led me to a space where I was in failure.
He was my first Brother—my first Friend—the first person to share with me that he honestly liked me as a person.
“You know? You’re pretty-cool Brother-Man.” (it was always ‘Brother-Man’ or ‘Sister-Man’, depending upon the ‘who’ with whom he was talking)
We became friends long before the Interwebs were created . . . confidants in all things . . . as time allowed; as events happened.
Last I heard—nearly twenty years past, today—he had found his True Love, traveling far to be with her, to share the time they had.
I’ve not talked with him since, but not because I did not want to; through circumstance, the distance between grew wider than our voices became able to bridge.
If I were seated at a table across, sharing this delightful iced-tea, I would say the same as I do now:
“Thank you, my Brother; thank you, my Friend.”
In the subsequent years—through all my travels—I have watched for signs, waited for cues, ever skeptical that such moments could be had.
I have watched as so many around me found peace in the completion of their quest; gratified, and so eager to share this new-found awareness.
Alas, it was not for me.
Still, I continued to wait and watch for the tells of purpose; evidence that you exist.
I really tried to listen, but I just didn't know how.
I know you're not a man or woman, god, because surely would you fall-prey to the limits of your humanity.
I also know you're not some elder, space-faring being, god, the playground of your creative intelligence you have gifted us merely for our amusement, as well as yours.
Time has passed, and events have further come to shape who I am, now.
I’ve reacted in all the same ways others have reacted in their living; thought these thoughts; felt these feelings; lived my time.
Some well; some badly.
Two years ago, I fell into love with a woman.
It was like walking into a room, each wall, ceiling and floor a mirror, the reflections being my own. It was as if I had met my Self for the very first time.
Astounding, to say the least.
Sadly, like a street-corner Prophet—consumed by the epiphany of my understanding—I forced my love upon her, and she withdrew, not able to understand what she was unable to understand.
All she could bring to the table—all the beautiful, terrible, human pieces that form her wondrous Whole—she did bring, as she was able; all she had.
This was enough, but I did not understand, filled as I was with so much noise in my hubris that what I knew would surely be self-evident: that my love would be her love.
I just wasn’t listening.
That special moment is gone, now, and there is absolutely nothing I can do to ever bring it back.
Through the imbalance of our place in each of our own respective timelines, we fell, apart, a part of who we were to be; a willing participant . . . not to this divergence, but in honoring who we dreamed ourselves to be.
My inability to express and share the things I do now--being better-able and equipped to form the lines which tell this story--with her, eye-to-eye, heart-to-heart, brings a painfulness more profound than any which I have experienced, before.
If I were seated at a table across, sharing this delightful iced-tea, I would say the same thing I do now:
"Thank you, my Sister; thank you, my Friend."
What's a person to do?
Still, I waited, I lived, I watched, and I did all the things people do.
Forty-seven years, and some four or five handfuls of days, ago, Jay and Charlene hand-picked me; willfully adopting me into--as a partner in--their Family.
They came to--and met me--in a Unitarian church, receiving me into their open arms, and open hearts filled with love, the volume of which will take the remainder of these lifetimes to fill; many, many more lifetimes would it take to relate (if such a thing were possible, in words).
“Thank you, Dad; thank you, Mom."
To you, beautiful woman, who--as a mere child--chose to let me live and found the courage to give me away to another, and live, that I might suffer this pain, experience these events, feel this love, I say this:
"Thank you, beautiful woman; thank you Sister-Mom."
Even if you had chosen otherwise, I would still honor your decision, as it was yours, and yours, alone.
Raised a Unitarian--raised by these beautiful people--it has been my boon to know true freedom in personal choice in pursuing my own path, wherever it may lead me, to whichever ends.
Raised a Unitarian--as a skeptic, ever cautious in limiting my Self lest I be bound to objective definition, restricting new-found understanding--it has been my bane to stand-outside all these other Houses: places, groups, entire communities filled with folks sharing a common happiness in the divinity of their beliefs.
From others, I've heard much of god, shared their stories, submitted my Self to the pity that I shall surely fall into the Misery of the Lost through the lack of my acceptance in the divinity of another's Creator.
My Path has led me through this time in the experience of much of all we have before us in these beautiful events, beautiful creatures, this beautiful World, this endless Universe.
I have studied with the Sages of Science--these metaphysical surgeons of concrete reality--as they dissected the Whole into its constituent parts so as to better-understand how they work, fit and affect each other in their cohesion.
I have studied with the Sages of the Mind--these metaphysical linguists of all that is expressed within the incorporeal hologram of each individual--as they sought to describe and translate things bearing no tangible, concrete referent.
In my curiosity, I have been compelled to learn about so, so many things, and have come to understand so, so much.
Physics, chakras, dance, multi-planar consciousness, biology, telepathy, fluid dynamics, the memory of everything that lies within every thing, physiology, love, horticulture, personal power, anatomy, patience, creating objects of art and utility, happiness, cooking, the ability to consciously combine thoughts into words and sentences and stories . . . you name it: when I did not eat, I tasted, and it has all been quite satisfying.
I know so, so many things, but few do I know their true Nature: how they all fit, together, into a Whole.
What am I, and how do I fit into this Whole?
All these events, things and understandings are what makes me Me--this is all I have to bring to the table.
Every, single time I think I know who I am--my own Nature; my own Self--I hear laughter, echoes of all the me's I was, am and will become.
Always enough; rarely on-time.
Three weeks ago, I heard you, god; I listened as you said the things you've always said; shared the things you've always shared; loved me the ways you've always loved me.
What I heard was that you've been with me throughout these past forty-seven years; it was I who was not there for you.
I just wasn't listening.
One of my favorite authors once wrote, "Being there is 90%; being there on-time is the other 10%."
What I found, is that being here is the last 1/100%, and I am so, so glad I am, now.
I'll not sully this conversation by elaborate description; suffice it to say that this singular moment was much, much more complete than I had hoped to dream it could ever be.
It was like walking into a room, each wall, ceiling and floor a mirror....
Finally, I had found my quiet, and listened as you shared the totality of everything you are . . . tachyons of intelligence that continually flow through the interstices of existence, clustering into atoms, organisms, ecospheres, planets, galaxies, universes of time . . . gladly and willfully reflecting this Creation that these things be absorbed into every thing—everything—lovingly mirrored as you are Created again, and again, and again . . . .
I would be there for every one, god, if I were able. In the interim, I am so, so satisfied with what I have been gifted; happy to live this short, sweet time that I might further honor such a thing.
Forever marked, who I am and become will always be supported by this understanding.
I come here with these words, this story, in sharing with you--my Brothers; my Sisters; my Friends; my Family-- because singular, defining moments such as these are so profound . . . so fundamentally important . . . that to not speak of them is unspeakable.
One day, at a table we will surely sit, sharing some iced-tea, or other, I'll say as I do now:
I know you hear me, god, not because you have ears, but because you are here.
"Thank you, God. I love you, too.”