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Seasoning the Fruiting Bodies
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Holding the days as if death were not in the background, is necessary, and yet, I find there are no roads without edges. Those edges are necessary, or there is no way to proceed in an intended direction, and everything is about our intentions, without seeing the edge of the road; the cliff there may be in part arbitrary, imagined, but is no less real for determining our course by ending the path with a different texture, color. It is a sign, a warning, that to go off road is to risk something, and I don’t know what that risk is. It is our intent to go from joy, to joy, to joy, and sometimes, the hardness of the road, it’s monotony, it’s tedious well traveled banality gives us a sense of triviality that is challenged by the intimations of joy, that sometimes becon from off road.
To go off road is to trust one’s capacity to read signs that are invisible. It would be best to know seasons as if they were seasoning, weathering us into understanding that begin at the skin, transform the flesh into something more sinewy and real, and go all the way to the bone to both warm it, and give it a sharper sense of being only a centimeter or two from the skin, where storms and hungers meet the end of that which we hold outside, and that which we presume is us, this inside part, with a fuzzy pleasantly pliable skin, a juicy sweet flesh, and a hard pit, that is the seed where all our blood is grown, and pushed out, as if squeezed, to become all of us.
We so feel like a solid thing, but we are more pulp than pit. It is a sweetness, and sweetness, and sweetness, to imagine ourselves such a substantial thing. Our sense takes bites out of this sweet world, and we linger with this interplay of other fleshy things subsumed into our own. Summer hangs on a tree, in a fruit, and like a fruit, summer needs to ripen just so before being plucked and fully ingested into our gestation of further sweetnesses by our faith and pleasured confidence that more is to come.
There are points where we begin to ignore the season, because we are being wrapped into further seasoning ourselves. Ripe with a smile, and then overripe, starting to wrinkle, to shrivel just a bit, we continue to ripen with further smiles knowing what summer has done to us. It’s ripening does not stop at our imagined apex of peak sweetness, but continues to work us into something more than we want. And that is such a sweet, now bittersweet, lesson, that we are always more than what we want, always more than what we can have, and what we can’t have.
Imagine being a tree. We take water and sunlight in lightly, carefree, guileless, and transform the bitter elements below the surface with our roots, into something every bird and every mammal desires, hungers for, to the extent that we will climb or fly into that tree to get it; even at times risking the bitterness of the unripe to be the first to get it. And the tree is willing to die each year in order that its progency be given in diaspora to the air, the land, the broad stretech of everything that extends beyond a tree’s imagination.
We needn’t imagine. We are no different than a tree; we are willing to die, whether we admit it or not. Every living day is a new one, full of roots within us transforming the bitter past into something that is fresh and sparkling with possibility; we are strong trunks of principled spine, giving ourselves to our intentions with an almost, but not, feckless bravery; we are branches with so many different interests, expressions, means of reception, and having so many nuanced capacity to mix senses into an experience that we choose, our marvelous choice! To merely receive, or to express in ways that only sunlight is strong enough to reflect, where even the shadows are brilliant with its starlight. Our leaves, like our days, imagine that they are filled with a joy that knows never death, even as we see fellow leaves brown and fall, even before summer is in full swing. We continue to green. And at last, someone or something identifies something we can’t ourselves see; our fruit, or expression that fees others in ways we take for granted, or slough off as not very important at all. But there are birds and bees and unseen creatures, even, feeding off of our fruiting bodies, which we experience perhaps only as a frangrance. And for some of these others, also in the same orchard, doing the same as us, the fragrance of our hinted at fruit isenough; they gather inspiration from just the aroma of what we are doing, and gathering that, like an oyster, form flesh around their pits. And the ground, of course is littered with them.
It is a good thing to look down, and see the bed of pits beneath us, reaching far underground, making it more solid than we could ever be. The ground extends forever from our point of view, this earth is not flat, and comes back to us, again and again forever and ever, as we circumscribe it with the circle of imagined sweetness, seasoning the other seasons, who posture as bitter, but who, they themselves, are consumed as a fruit, as if they too were a peach that was simply overcome by a full acceptance of aversion as a kind of bite we can embrace simply through our own continuous seasoning, going into a different kind of ripeness.


Yikes! Paul, it’s taken me days to dive in and fully luxuriate in this piece……intimations of joy indeed….and that rich central image of the tree…seriously, your writing involves and thrills me.

Well, so pleased that you find my writing worth reading. As an outlier, I don’t have too many fans, so it is gratifying in that respect. So thanks. More importantly though… if writing involves and thrills, what more could writing do! And back at you, your writing involves and fascinates as well ! <3 Paul

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