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All That Re-Appears
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It is snowing here for the first time in two or three years; the ground air and earth are above freezing, so its not going to stick. Still, it is lovely to see more than flurries, to see a consistent drop of white beauteous things too important to forget, too unlikely not to remember.
Precipitation is a miracle easily explained by science; but the thirst and the hunger for it, I will spend the entire rest of my life trying to understand. It is to me a miracle, whether it descend in crystalized flakes in the north of Alaska, because the air is so cold and dry it can’t hold any moisture at all, or whether it be coming off the Pacific, in great rolls of clouds, steamrolling against the Coastal Range, which braces itself against the change in air current that gives it its life anyway.
Why the clouds and seas and the bluffs and the mountains and the pastures, and the sifting trees, all filtering each other as if the air were the fingers of the seas and the land, trying to, but not quite succeeding in full touch, much less, full grasp of each other.
There are so many ways to disappear, after all, everything does, but perhaps the lesson is not so much to disappear but become something else. The seas feel their powers as the moon throws their shoulders against the bluffs, and slowly disappears them into disintegration, but not. Those clay coagulants of minerals dissolve into the oceans, making them richer with themselves, making their original ingredients soupier, more fecund, brimming with nutrients for living things we cannot see, though they too, have not disappeared, but are merely hiding by the exquisite quality of fine size.
It began there, they tell us, long ago, when lightning, charged elements, complex compounds, complex reactions, and even they told us this week, phosphorus from an errant comet that plopped into the brew, created life. I don’t believe it for a minute, but I have to admit it is a very convenient story, without which, we would be embarrassed beyond standing, to try and explain what all this appearing and disappearing is. There is no end to it; why then do we long so much for a beginning?
Something important to remember is that we can simply allow ourselves to inhale, to breathe into the complexity, without any need to understand in any conventional way. This, coupled with another gift of mind to say “The breath is the bridge to caring.” Coupled then, they disappear into this: we only need to care and allow all our understandings to appear and disappear and appear again, because, regardless of our attempts to do something we consider better, this is all that happens anyway. Even science is a rather archaic document, full of footnotes, that reveal mind arching, mind bending, transformations of revision. What appeared as to be the sun orbiting the earth, is now the Milky Way, with a black hole at the center, fleeing the entire rest of the universe, as the universe itself flees where it came from, perhaps, trying to disappeared from something that has never even appeared to us.
There are many things I got right in 2023, but that would be a false statement too. Everything I think I got right in 2023 was something that was long in fruition, some, no doubt, from treasured and concealed aspirations from the very moment my creativity was swatted down for coloring outside the lines at the age of 5. So many things have to come together for things to appear. It takes a lifetime to learn that it takes a lifetime to understand your life in a way that you accept all that has not appeared, and perhaps finally does, but resting a bit in knowing that it will disappear again, not that long from now, and not even necessarily by death, but every transformation brings surprise, and that is more than enough. Death, of course, is the biggest surprise, besides birth, but that is too big a topic to gather any thoughts around, for it is so much bigger than thought.
It’s not morbid to consider disappearing, for like that almost white bluff at Point Reyes above Drakes Beach, we are not disappearing altogether but melding with liquid, getting married to something that is beyond the level of surprise we can currently understand, and of course there is loss, but the gain, the gain is so far beyond our measure, that we will take many lifetimes to understand it, as we flee, or is it run towards, something, not yet appeared, something whose disappearance will reveal more than any other appearance before it. Hope, I am told, is a kind of grief, a grief that understands that every lost thing within us, is owed passage through our movement into more gain, and more loss. This sounds so very true, and all that gain and loss becomes a community which all of us are part of.


“Something important to remember is that we can simply allow ourselves to inhale, to breathe into the complexity, without any need to understand in any conventional way”


Your writing soothes me!

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