A Few Good Hours

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“A tiny change today brings a dramatically different tomorrow.”  ~  Richard Bach

Humid and cold. Once again. There were some coyote sounds earlier, and they had several dogs all riled up. It’s been quiet since then. I don’t know what possessed me, but for a brief moment I found myself thinking it might be nice to write a ‘bring in the New Year’ post. Needless to say, that never happened. Don’t look for it next year either. I don’t have it in me. Nah, if I am awake at all at midnight tonight it will be after a few hours of good sleep. I’m not seeing much to celebrate on either side of the midnight hour. We’ll see, maybe tomorrow. That line always works. What is time anyway? Feeling low this morning. Let’s leave it at that.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Faery Music for Heart and Soul

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“If you’re lonely when you’re alone, you’re in bad company.”  ~ Jean-Paul Sartre

“In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for constructive use of solitude. One must overcome the fear of being alone.”  ~  Rollo May

“Solitude is a human presumption. Every quiet step is thunder to beetle life underfoot, a tug of impalpable thread on the web pulling mate to mate and predator to prey, a beginning or an end.”  ~  Barbara Kingsolver

Deep cold once again. More snow on the way, or so they say. I’m down with that. It’s kinda sorta go with the flow for me these past few days. And my need for solitude, to assuage the soft pummeling my senses endure in the marketplace, is shifting from compulsory to intentional. It’s a subtle and nuanced shift, to be sure. The novelty, the new force that initiated the shift, is the beginning of monthly Social Security benefits payments. How cool is that, right? There are some necessary expenditures in the near future, yet regardless of that, there is the whispering of opportunity, nagging and maybe admonishing, for there is much living of life to catch up on. My life has been on simple survival mode, subsistence by default, for over three years now. What’s up with that? At first, when the payment first arrived, my mind was on things, not experience. Now, a week later, I am beginning to see that it is perhaps not the things of life so much as it is the attendance to heart and soul. Now we’re talking. In the therapy session yesterday I found myself somewhat boggled when I spontaneously began to talk about travel. I have not gone on a trip, an adventure, in years. Going further, I found myself talking about New England. I have two special women friends yonder. I used to go there often, for one of these women is my best friend, unconditionally, on a soulmate level. So now what? It gives me leave to dream and scheme on this for a while. I could pull it off. Maybe it’s the real thing. 62 and counting. I’m at that point this morning. The deep cold seems to want to be a metaphor, and I am tempted to let it have its way. Sometimes, if not all the time, ya jest gotta g’wan with what your heart says is so, which means to ride the season, and revere the passage of time. Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and the ocean, and the train. I love Amtrak!. I don’t know. Time to listen to my heart and soul. It won’t take too much time. Life .  .  .  oh, never mind. These thoughts swing like the sweet music of the Faery Folk. It tickles a bit, but that ain’t bad at all. One must giggle, on occasion.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Dolphin and the Smartphone

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“Waking consciousness is dreaming – but dreaming constrained by external reality”  ~  Oliver Sacks

“Attempts to wake before our time are often punished, especially by those who love us most. Because they, bless them, are asleep. They think anyone who wakes up, or who, still asleep, realizes that what is taken to be real is a ‘dream’ is going crazy.”~  R. D. Laing

It is one of those mornings that harkens back to Massachusetts, and I don’t know why. That was Worcester, where these memories were born. Sometimes I think of it as a cross-time phenomenon; these memories are here, where once they were, at their inception, there, and I’m like all ‘here, here’ about the whole affair. It is, at the moment, 16º F and 93% humidity. I got those stats from the internet, interestingly enough. That means a lot to me. You kids have no idea what you hold in your hands, or what sits on your lap, or in front of you on your desk. Take all the selfies you want, children. You have no idea. You grew up with this technology. How lucky you are, yet how little you know. It is experience and time that I am on about here. For me, the advent and blossoming of personal computers and the internet has been one of the more breathtaking experiences in my life. Listen, I’ve communed with a pod of dolphin while lying prone upon the bowsprit of a sailboat. And I’ve been in the water with a single bull dolphin who was clearly pissed that I was there, and he made his antagonism known through a pattern of close, very close, passes at high speed, roughly buffeting my body with each pass. And I have been within six feet of a mother dolphin and her two babies, as they passed beside the tiny jetty where I sat beside a woman who’s beauty made me tremble way more than once. Hey, she also royally pissed me off nearly as many times, like the time she called me at 1 AM to tell me that she’d just gotten laid, in a dinghy, back in Florida Bay, and my obvious incredulity apparently spurred her on to explain that she had just “fornicated, but it felt so good!”. I’m sure. Of course now I know that I should have told her to drop by the apartment, since I was already awake, so that she could demonstrate exactly what she was talking about. I was so unclear about what was happening that I went on to attend RCIA classes at the local Catholic Church, where she was a parishioner, just in case I might find a clue there. She was, you see, what she called a Charismatic Catholic, a sect with the propensity to watch for the Sun spinning in the sky as a sign of the Apparition of the Blessed Mother. I was in over my head; this much was clear. And there was the night when we took shrooms and wandered along the backroad on Plantation Key, where we ended up trespassing on somebody’s estate. I climbed up onto a small crusty coral boulder and took off my shirt so that I could breathe in the sensation of the stiff midnight wind against my bare chest. She gasped and admonished me that it was scandalous to expose myself like that in a public place. I just took my tee shirt and tucked a bit of it into my back pocket, where it dangled as we wandered on into the night. After only a few months of hanging out together I fell into the first and most scary bout of depression in my life. Last I heard she had married into money and was living in Palm Beach. Yet she also provided immense emotional support through phone calls while I was helping my mother die. So, what does this have to do with digital devices and the internet? There were PCs and Macs back then, but I didn’t have one. I write these stories for you because I was able to  .  .  .  oh, never mind. Suffice it to say that I did not meet her online. This is the cross-time thing I mentioned earlier. I can still smell the salt air. Because I am still there. Now, if you suspect that I have inadvertently drifted into obscure prose here, think otherwise. I just got my first smartphone, just yesterday. Major impact. Trust me on that. And I find myself wanting to call her, but she took on a married name, so I cannot track her down online, I cannot get to hear that sweet Georgia Peach accent again, and I cannot stop thinking about her this morning. And what if I had this little Samsung smartphone back then, and I had taken a selfie of me atop that rock? Well, I was buff back then, from landscaping and tree trimming, both buff and deeply tanned; and my hair hung in sun-bleached waves alongside my head. I was a sight to see, and my intellect and sense of humor were at a peak from spending time with her. I was a lucky man, but I did not have a sailboat, much less a dinghy. Hey, do I sound sexist here? Not really. You don’t get this stuff online, my child. The heady level of consciousness where these memories were born would only be scrubbed out and pasty online. Oh, wait! She knows where I live and she knows my name. She could track me down online, and we could have a conscious conversation over our smartphones. So, in closing, I am sending out a telepathic message. Cher, my love, look me up, please! I’d dearly love to hear from you. We have a trans-temporal bond, my dear. I know you can hear me. Send me a selfie as well, so I can see if you have aged even half as well as I expect you have. The world has changed immensely since we last spoke, only ten years ago, my friend. We are all of us more connected now. And unless you call me in the near future I will have to say that this modern interconnectivity is somehow lacking, that it has taken us all down a few notches from the place of heart song and soul music. Call me, my love. And for you blog readers here – this is not about Cher, and it is not about me. That is perhaps what I am getting at. I mean, I just got my first smartphone, and look where it took me, right off the bat. It only serves to prove to me that we are indeed all interconnected. Am I still being obscure here? Never mind. Think Kerouac. I’m just spouting off.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Sore Feet and Alternate Realities

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“Lonely people tend, rather, to be lonely because they decline to bear the psychic costs of being around other humans. They are allergic to people. People affect them too strongly.” ~  David Foster Wallace

Yesterday’s deep freeze kind of morning was just painful enough for me to lose track of the beauty for a while. My bad. But this morning is compulsory laundry day and we all know by now how I feel about the laundromat. It will be nice, a nice break from Trumpian reality. There’s a lot of talk these days about alternate realities. I for one resent it. Why can’t peeps just keep their realities to themselves?! I officially, as of today, declare resistance to this Trump shit. Even Pandora wouldn’t have gone this far. But I woke up feeling sick this morning, so I might be a tad grumpy. As far as I know the cat had no hand, paw, whatever, in my waking. It’s nice to have a little respite from her manipulations. And about the massage? It will happen. That’s a note to myself BTW. This blog often serves as a reminder to me, of things that are important. Even the simple act of writing something down makes it a little more real. That is important. It has been important ever since my first SS payment arrived. The reality shift is proving to be so pervasive that I feel humbled by its effects. My feeling sick is likely a symptom of the shift. I’ve been necessarily thrown off balance. When balance falters illness can creep in. My sense is that the illness serves to get one to slow the heck down. As dear Brother Phil sometimes told me, you have to break down your feet to adjust to a new pair of shoes. You can’t just let the shoes do all the work. Speaking of shoes and feet and stuff, one of the kids at work asked me the other day if my feet ever ache from being on them all day long at work? I never really thought about it, so when I told him they didn’t ache I caught the gist of what I had just said and I was like all how cool is that dude(?). How odd though. He is a veteran. He was in the Army. I’d a thunk that the Army would help you get used to sore feet. Am I missing something here? Let’s leave it at that. One last note – my first reader yesterday morning came from Ireland. I don’t know why, but that just tickles me.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Knotted Mind

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“I am no longer afraid of becoming lost, because the journey back always reveals something new, and that is ultimately good for the artist.”  ~  Billy Joel

“If you find yourself drawn to an event against all logic, go. The universe is telling you something.”  ~  Gloria Steinem

Mind all knotted up this morning. Deep cold outside. I could easily bow to agoraphobia but that ain’t a good idea. I’m just ready for the holidays to be over. I’ve been thinking about what the coming year will bring, and that kind of thinking seems to be a problem more than anything else. I know in my heart that the right thing to do is to just make a move to break out of the stasis that has been my life for quite a long time now. My gut tells me to get a massage, and then my thoughts kick in and start debating where to go for a massage and how much will it cost and is that too much and this all starts to go all carousel on me and I end up with a bunch of painted ponies instead of a massage! So much for my thinking process. Which is more pinball game than process. The massage shall come by and by. Moving forward, since I am not going to get into national politics today this post is just about over. What I have been feeling is that I have long neglected my instinctual and intuitive faculties. Take the massage for example – making a simple choice, in spite of all of the options and fees available, gets the old ball rolling again. Sometimes you just have to jump in and swim. Where that will lead is not the issue at first, if ever. Tis the journey that counts, right? Right. I’ll make up my mind if I don’t hog tie it first.

Waking Up to Smell the Coffee

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“Trust dreams. Trust your heart, and trust your story.”  ~  Neil Gaiman

“Why stop dreaming when you wake up?”  ~  Neil Gaiman

“The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can.”  ~  Neil Gaiman

Perhaps 2017 will be the year of better coffee for me. I would like other good things to come my way but better coffee holds a unique appeal that will sweetly add an understated element to the foundation of my life. Budgetary concerns have often relegated me to cheap, Folger-like coffee during 2016. Dammit. I’ve learned to appreciate it, and that is still what we have at work, at my job, these days, but there is still something innately unsavory about it. This type of coffee is the nuts and bolts of the coffee world, so maybe it belongs in a hardware store? I was introduced to really good coffee by my ex-wife, Shannon. She also took my virginity, then proceeded to introduce me to countless new things. Of them all, the coffee has garnered the most appreciation from me. After all of these many years, 40 of them now, I still don’t know what to make of her. I do know that when she and I performed as the musical duo “Seabird” the harmonies were downright haunting; tight, and fitting, germane to the story the songs told. The odd thing was that she almost always sang the melody, and I the harmony. There’s something to it, I tell you. I’ve got a native talent for harmony. Go figure. So, toward the end of 2016 I graduated to Cafe Bustello, which is an espresso roast Cuban coffee. It connects me with warm memories of stopping by the little Cuban cafe window next to Burger King, in Islamorada, Florida, where I lived for over two decades. I would stop by many mornings on my way to work as a bartender at Smuggler’s Cove; and open air dockside bar, just across the Snake Creek Channel from the coast Guard Station. While waiting for my 16 oz Cuban coffee to be prepared I found that the Cuban gentlemen there, who hung out in the tiny foyer drinking shots of Bustello, were generous enough to share a shot with me, although I had no friggin idea what they were saying. I can catch the drift when Taos Spanish is spoken, but Cuban is a whole different bird. Both sing sweetly. I rest my case. But now that I am receiving monthly SS benefits through direct deposit I can finally afford to buy the good stuff. The can of Bustello is not quite finished, and I will not besmirch it in a rush to get on with my life. Hey, I still remember the day that I had taken a low dose of psilocybin shrooms before mounting my bicycle to head in. The shrooms were starting to kick in by the time I got to where the gentlemen were gathered. They had the nicest smiles. Even the coffee was smiling that morning. Now, moving forward, it is profoundly cold out this morning; 8º, give or take. I’ve only been out twice since waking up. Beautiful. Rosie woke me up by tap, tap, tapping on my sleeve. I opened my eyes to see the upright feline silhouette against the backdrop of the lamp on the table by the door. On occasion I like to sleep with the faint light on. So there was the cat, “Dude – tap, tap, tap – wake up dude – tap, tap, tap – it’s time for my snack dude – tap, tap, tap – and by the way bro I chased away a bruja while you were sleeping dude”. My cat takes good care of me. I’m not particularly afraid of brujas, it’s just that when they come around while I sleep I awake with my hair all in knots, and I’m like all chill sister chill. Trust me on this: your cat always has your back when unfriendly magick is afoot in the land. I love magick, and I never lose my wonder when it occurs. I can protect my own self good enough alright but I grow weary of the conflict. I seek better magick in 2017.  And less toxic of an attitude toward some women, not all. With some it never was toxic to begin with. Live and learn, right? Right. I feel stronger now that the hangover has faded. Take that as a metaphor. I most certainly meant it that way. But I also really did miss posting yesterday mostly due to a hangover – I’d been way too emotional for a couple of days so I fed it some beer. As Jimmy Buffet sang, “It cleans me out and then I can go on”. Now, I’m going to step outside to check out the stars before wrapping up this post. Busy backson.

It is way humid this morning, so the stars are subdued. Yet there is a vividness to the darkness; an edge, an understated beauty. I feel pretty good myself. That I am approaching 2017 with a romantic attitude is unintentional. It’s a natural, organic attitude. I know that after all these years the ex-wife still hears me in some way when I think about her. My love was true, is true. Hers, I’m still not sure about. That is simply a part of the story. I also know that my best friend, Sharon, hears me when I think about her. This mutual love is beyond question. All I really know is that there is magick afoot in the land this morning. The cat pointed this out to me with her incessant gentle tapping. The romantic in me is seeing a particular pair of blue eyes, but it is rather presumptuous of me to designate this as anything more than fantasy at this point. It’s not a goal anyway. Someone struck me with her beauty and it stuck with me through harmony. Resonance cultivates music within. Meanwhile my actual goal this week is to get a massage. My body is fielding a goodly amount of pain that I would like to send on its way. The massage therapist is likely to witness some tears. Such is release, muscle memory. At age 62 I find myself, oddly enough, in deep gratitude for sentience. And consciousness. Don’t forget that. Don’t ever forget that, k? Wake up and smell the coffee.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

 

 

Stillness

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“That would distract your attention, and attention is the whole point. Attention to the experience of something given, something you haven’t invented in your imagination.”  ~  Aldous Huxley

My Christmas present to myself is new wiper blades for the car. What convinced me to do so was driving home from work two days ago, through a fresh and daunting winter storm, and when I got just a ways north of town the freezing rain began to fall. It was not fun. I made it home in one piece. That’s always the goal. Why I put off getting new blades for so long is anybody’s guess, but now I am so excited that I can’t wait for a chance to use them. The forecast is for snow showers tomorrow, on Christmas Day. But I doubt I will be leaving home. I need the rest. And the solitude. Christmas season for this retail worker has been about enough. My senses seem dulled, in a physical way. My health could be much better. Yet I find myself doing the Thanksgiving thing for Christmas: gratitude. I’m not going to make one of those cheesy lists here. The amount of year’s end lists online alone is already more than enough. Yes, things are looking pretty dire out in the world at large as well. The Trump thing is also already too much. The man’s (and I use that term loosely) propensity for shocking the bejeezes out of just about everybody bodes ill for us all. And on top of all of that I am hungry, and its pert near time to prep for work. The shower will feel good. The work day is only four hours. That will give me time to catch a nap before bedtime. Or watch a movie. Something. Stillness is actually a gift of greater importance than wiper blades. I will be still.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Morning of Mystery (Snow Day)

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“The snow doesn’t give a soft white damn whom it touches.”  ~  E. E. Cummings

Today turns out to be a snow day. I’m about to venture out to see if the driveway is passable. I can’t imagine what the roads look like. It was freezing rain as I got home last night, on top of three inches of snow. I have heard no traffic yet this morning. I may be shoveling for quite a while today. From my front door out to the garden gate is about 50 feet of 6″-7″ snow. The car is outside the gate. From car to the end of the driveway is maybe 100-120 feet. That is what I am going to look at, in the dark, after I post this. It is a morning of mystery. Best go solve it.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Beyond the Solstice

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“Life is complex in its expression, involving more than percipience, namely desire, emotion, will, and feeling.”  ~  Alfred North Whitehead

“Nobody has a right to speak more clearly than he thinks.”  ~  Alfred North Whitehead

Snow is coming soon. Weather.com says it is here. Already. That’s the thing about the internet – it can say anything it wants to. There are, of course, consequences for such generalities. And in addition the internet can’t say a thing. There are people involved but  .  .  .  never mind. That was going nowhere fast. It’s like a train of thought without a club car in that  .  .  .  sigh, I just can’t help myself. The snow will bring that cherished by all white Christmas. That was just then a clunky sentence. Whatever. I’m into the joy of the season this year. The edginess of the consuming public, at least from the viewpoint of this here retail cashier, can be pointedly abrasive, but the multitude of stories in the air this time of year is ripe pickings for happy smiles and warm hearts. As it turns out, at this point in my life, small children and dogs now make me laugh. We allow dogs into the hardware store, and we keep a canister of biscuits for those who like them. I love to see them come in. And I love to look out the window to see them sitting in the driver’s seat of the car while their human shop. It’s the little things, right? Yeh. Moving forward. This is the second day of my financial change. The Social Security check came yesterday, direct deposit at midnight. This is going to bring on interesting times. That it happened at the threshold of the holiday season makes it all the better. No, I don’t see it as a gift, except on the spiritual level, where nearly everything is a gift. Honestly, I don’t know what to think of it, except that it will buy me the full Italian dinner that I crave. This is forthcoming. I don’t know when; I don’t know if I will have a dinner date either. I’m leaving that to Destiny, which sometimes takes her own sweet time. Don’t want to be late for dinner. Now is a time for feeling in to the inner changes set in motion. Kick back. Watch a movie. Eat some popcorn. Listen to a bit of Celtic music. Pet the cat. Listen to some Billy Joel (Scenes from an Italian Restaurant). And scratch my head, not in wonder, but because my scalp is dry. Some things are just that simple.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Hound at the Crossroads

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“I think that to one in sympathy with nature, each season, in turn, seems the loveliest.”  ~  Mark Twain

“She enjoys rain for its wetness, winter for its cold, summer for its heat. She loves rainbows as much for fading as for their brilliance. It is easy for her, she opens her heart and accepts everything.”  ~  Morgan Llywelyn

There have been two nice outbursts from coyotes this morning. They bring such lovely music into this world that seems to be always short of music. Tis a balmy 19º. Feeling groggy, both physically and mentally. Emotionally as well, so it seems. It is the Solstice, my friends; exact at 3:44 MST. That may account for at least a grounding factor in my sluggishness. It amplifies most all energy. As an intellectual exercise the seasonal spiral of the Celtic worldview is a lovely thing to behold. But when you really experience its magic you will then know how much meaning there is bound up, woven into, the knots of love and friendship. The knots are muchly necessary, for left free-floating all of that magic is just all confusing and stuff. Yes, I feel the whispering call of the Ancestors this morning. My own mother seems to be most prominent. She knows what I have been through these past three years. And because I was there to help her along her path for the seven months, from diagnosis to culmination, that it took her to die, we have a special bond, something that is deeper and stronger by degree than a simple mother and child reunion. We started that seven months with a Harry Potter marathon and finished it with some intimate sharing, until terminal agitation took her and swept her into her endgame. Even from within her frenzied, agitated space she offered encouragement to her middle son, who was then embarking on a journey of healing from the wound they had shared as it manifested. Hey, I just referred to myself in the first and third person in the space of a few sentences. I can do that. The rules are more flexible than  .  .  .  oh, never mind. My Social Security benefit payment came through at midnight. The financial pressure that has been hounding me for three years is lifted, for the most part, and all I want to do is bunker down and indulge in a little profound rest. I will treat myself to a dinner out, a haircut, and a therapeutic massage. From there it is car repairs. But the overall benefit is that when I think of something I’d like to have or do, I can rest easy in knowing I have the resources to do so. I don’t need to  snap my fingers and make it so. It’s the knowing that is the key that opens the gate to the path beyond a friggin hard passage in life. I get an image here of Hecate at the crossroads with her three headed hound. She is smiling, and offering me sweet protection. Hecate rules the night, and she is also the Queen of the Witches. I ain’t a witch, as such, but my magick resonates so well, so harmonically sings with her magick that I am in on the game too. Good stuff that. Happy Solstice, my friends

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.