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05/12/2003 Entry: ""Mile a Minute""
Like Heraclitus and his river, you really can't return to the same home you've left. Stasis and surety are sandcastles, built with human hopefulness on the brink of raging tides. All that lies behind the door when I leave will transform and transfigure as soon as the wheels turn and the flesh that holds my name is beyond sight. I did not expect to arrive to a house frozen and listless, an absolute zero where nothing mas moved. Thank goodness for change. Thank goodness for the rush of it's leading edge. It guides me to ideas, ideas to action, action to manifestation, and round and round again.
Leaving a thing certainly makes you appreciate it. Ask renunciates, or the Buddha himself if you can find him. I appreicate this town, and in time daresay I will let it go too, like it did with my old home, and the one before that. Once I've threaded the next pearl on that strand, I'm sure I'll have much good to say for this speck in the greening mountains, just as I've divined delight from my former state, albeit in a roundabout way. There are still twists and turns in certain roads that are new or unknown to me here. There is still much to give, and many surprises that have not yet lept out within the sleeping granite that rings us in serpentine winding. For now, it is good, very good, which is good because there is only now.
Within a month I've dipped into obvious ironies; the lushness and scarcity of Haiti, the blandness and opulence of Eastern Metro-America, and the laissez-faire obligations of Home, I've mediated wild extremes. There is no return to normal. Once this pendulum of perspective starts it's wide arc in a rush for stillness at the middle, it will spin and never repeat the exact same swing, no point revisited. As the wind whips by, and the emotions from that tumult rise, I can only be thankful to feel them; I have something, out of all this space, to feel! Upset at returning to an injured cat who had been entrusted to friends, tired from lack of sleep, goosebumpy in chilly shadows, ready to sell off everything and live simply... all blessings, oddly, that there is stimuli to evoke emotion.
For each human there are nearly a trillion stars you could have to name, and yet Annie Dillard found this great statistc opining that all humans presently alive could fit standing in a small lake outside of London. Feel that? Is that awe? Good. Now feel something else. Is that the injured cat peering at you with veternarian vexed eyes? Good. Now pet it, gently. Is that love? Whatever, hold it tight, for in the coldness of eternity there is no feeling like it, none shown just so as you've just done. You miracle worker, you.
The sun is setting on this day and on this shelter along a street I know too well. I pray that in the rising I'll come across something I don't know, or even won't know. Let me be puzzled. Let mystery be the floor and my curiosity that dances barefoot on it to the sound of the birthing of clouds. Let me awaken with trembling unfamiliarity to a morning light whose color cannot be named and painted. Is there any greater wish? Is this any way to feel about coming home after steering a glob of metal through ten hours of mile a minute velocity?
I cannot feel the turning of the Earth but I see the side effects; the evening is dizzy in thoughts. Change is in the air, and caterpillars are climbing stalks for the sake of doing just that. But less sublty, Heraclitus' river rolls on and on, through tidal mudflats and mountain glens of fern and jack-in-the-pulpit. It flows through me, and it flows through you, and you never step in the same river twice.
It's good to be back.
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