Frustration

This bloggy thing is frustrating. I do due diligence, and still typos and just plain wrong words and syntax show up in the final product that goes out to a MailChimp audience of a very select few. I suppose I should be grateful so few receive the errors.

I jot these notes by hand with one or another of my daily carry fountain pens—sometimes even two if the ink runs out of one. I then enter those bespoke words into an everyday word processor, sprucing them up as I go. From there, Grammarly is called upon for a first go to suggest a more effective way to present such thoughts. The results are printed and shared with the house grammarian. Finally, adjustments are made, and the post is scheduled to be released at 5 AM of some weekday. At 9 AM, MailChimp looks in to see if there is a posting or postings since 9 AM of the previous day. Shortly after 9 AM, the posting shows up in people’s inbox.

Sometime in the course of the day, it is brought to my attention by a reader that some fubar snafu (with an emphasis upon the “f” in each descriptor) has occurred and some letter has been dropped, or a word misapplied that I cannot account for but is less than was intended.

Anyone who has a hint about how to better monitor my process so my frustration is lowered without leading to a lack of caring about such details … —Do tell.

Flag

Flags come in combinations of color and patterns. Those are symbols that people define in the grandest of terms that put themselves in their best light. My current dream of a flag to use as a standard revealing my allegiance shifts in the other direction.

The flag of my dreams is square instead of a rectangle. It won’t wave as well in a wind as a rectangle, but if desired, it could be placed in the center of a humble white rectangle of truce.

In the center of the square is a blue circle, one-third the area of the largest circle available on a square. It represents the “pale blue dot” of a planet of water—our only Indigenous home. Water—as the largest component of our bodies—reminds us to be humble.

Around such a starting point is a transparent circle (or as fine a grid as is just barely noticeable to distinguish it from any busy background against which it might be displayed). This is reminiscent of the air around us that we swim in and keep forgetting it is present until a derecho flattens us. Our imaginations need the invisible.

The remaining space contains a third circle touching the side of the square. It is green for the chlorophyll that is representative of the food that sustains us. No plants : no animals ∴ no food.

A rainbow’s remaining colors frame the circles of life—red, orange, yellow, and violet.

Any quilters or seamsters among the readers here who would give this a try?

Holes

There’s a hole
in our bucket
we sing in excuse
for not participating
in activities
for the common good

there’s no hole
in my bucket
we sing to defend
our non-participation
in activities
for the common good

for the common good
to be active
participating
In a community song
welcoming the bucketless
to lead the whole

Supremacy

Supremacy is always a temporary state. Every one and every thing eats and is eaten, begins and ends. It doesn’t matter how much heritage one builds on—it, too, will fall. Whether the standard is the birth and death of stars or earth’s continents, worms or bacteria—something and nothing, rising and falling, reveal the larger background of stuff and process.

The U.S. is again reminded that it’s self-proclaimed “city of light built on a hill” is only as bright as its connections—internally and externally—and even then will only have its day, not a forever.

The “Supreme” Court does not rise above the ordinariness of all things. The Dread Scott decision failed to protect slavery. The Citizen’s United will fail to protect corporations and their ability to control politics through profits. Decisions about elections have not and will not protect democracy.

Even Brown v. Board of Education or Roe v. Wade will not avoid subversion, sabotage, and stupidity. People seem not to live long without feeling they control someone else’s opportunities and choices.

Whether our language is that of supremacy, entitlement, or privilege—we are always attempting to finalize the current status quo and protect current structural and cultural power.

Only occasionally does this word game of “supreme” or “perfect as is” get exposed for the charade it is. Even then, naked kings double down on strutting their stuff and grabbing the tender parts of others to defend their particular mountain—only one out of a whole range of mountains eroding away and on their way to being subsumed under a tectonic plate.

Supremacy continues to haunt dreams of community and visions of mutual care, common good, and general welfare.

Autumn’s First Child

when an equator
crosses the center
of a system’s star
the balance
is temporary

those born but a day after
an autumnal equinox
are a winter conceived
descendant of darkness
carried through spring and summer

knowing all too well
life’s end
and its own
while sensing
more than enough

blessings to you
little one
still carrying
a heart of warmth
into settling cold

Pro-social

There are anti-social crimes. “Social” here means under the power and control of the group currently in authority. Those who most benefit from the already established economy get to set the limits on what does not benefit them. Such limitations take place at every level of granularity, which appears in instances where the same “crime” may be committed, but it is defined in one way for those inside the system and differently for those on the outside. Those who steal by way of the pen and legislation (white/white-collar) are judged and sentenced less harshly than those who do not have the levers of power available to them (Black/blue-collar).

We have few examples of pro-social activity until the above becomes egregious enough for sufficient numbers to gather in complaint. Those pro-social activists participate in one form of protest or another—usually a multi-generational movement. “Social,” in this context, means a rebalancing of what common good or general welfare might mean for all in the society. Social becomes another word for justice.

By the time protest becomes labeled as anti-social, it is recognized by those in power positions as dangerous to their continuing to live in the manner to which they have become accustomed.

It is very difficult for a culture to build-in pro-social safeguards for such retard the kinds of division that entitle one group over another—losing track of individual gifts, in favor of one perceived advantage, such as racism, or another.

An easy attack on pro-social activity is to label it “socialist.” If you can think of a pro-social activity beyond protest, it will aid future generations if that is enacted today, and again tomorrow, and again…. Boldness to you.

Black

“Black is the color of my true love’s hair” carries the famous parody with it – “Black is the color of my love’s true hair.” With this shift of one word, the sentence and sentiment changes.

With the shift of one word, we move beyond a parody’s fondness to a blunt instrument known best in its negative form – propaganda. Replacing “Black Lives Matter” with “All Lives Matter” and “Blue Lives Matter,” there is the continued attempt to disappear a specific subculture of many subcultures.

Black is an evocative description of a creative beginning. James Weldon Johnson’s “Creation” begins with an inaccuracy of G*D stepping out on space before there is space. There is a better accuracy describing such a moment – 

Darkness covered everything
Blacker than a hundred midnights
Down in a cypress swamp.

Risking the loss of an anthropomorphic arm to a yet unnamed crocodile, G*D is said to smile light into existence and beckon, “Bring forth!” Whereupon all manner of life assembled.

Described as “lonely still,” G*D’s next act is born out of a deepening loneliness yearning for something closer than simply light and multiplying things. Blackness is again entered—this time from the bottom of a clay deposit. A close encounter of the first order was released and kneaded into a mirror, more than dim, blacker than nano black – darker than Carlsbad after the tourists are gone. A non-reflective mirror holding ever- more-creation continually present.

Black is the color of G*D’s true image. This is not the imaginary category of race, but the making of way when there is no yet-way.

Protest Contest

let’s have
a protest contest
pitting a protest
against a protest
protesting protests
such a contest
is nearly always
won by
those who have
the most power
the most to lose
from the loss
of what little
advantage they have
mostly economic
bolstered
politically
legally
an unequal contest
worthy of contesting
with a protest

Location

Location, Location, Location. So runs the mantra for real estate. The same runs true for my writing, for I am not a systematic writer, disciplined to use my time at perfecting a craft.

Different locations have a significant influence on whether any writing gets done. I need solitary space to slowly allow a thought to proceed and wander where it will, including doubling back to its starting point. Words change tense. A bird or word flitting by changes the trajectory of where I thought I was headed. That little beauty seems worthy of following for a bit. Squirrel! is all too present. A conversation overheard is an attractive distraction from the difficult task of translating synapse activity to a little scribble so wan on the page, a caged wildness instead of a tamed fox.

Arriving too late for a favorite table at the Library means an adjustment before attempting a next tale from where the table and I were, is more dramatic than appears on my outside.

A person wandering by can seem to be a literary spy judging whether this scrawl is worthy of being stolen. It is time to double down on hiding a nugget in a tripled allusion.

O to know what I thought before seeing it on the page—even if it is encoded in language rudely lifted from the past and unintelligible until tomorrow.

All this to note, I am writing in a new-to-me location. Maybe next time, I’ll be back to an unversed stanza or opaque suggestion.