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APRIL  2009
National Poetry Month



Does the thought of having all your symbols twisted just to create peace and harmony in the world sit ok with everyone? Is there an everyone? Is it just the black and white part that sits ok because life has to compromise with situations that are sketchy and out of control?  Is the caveman ready to sit down with his inner beauty, is the inner beauty ready to lock chains with the inner caveman? Is anyone ready to admit that emptiness is the result of fullness? Or, that fullness is the discipline of emptiness. Are you comfortable? Do you want to learn more about the symbols that evoke one's inner powers, abilities and comfort-zone?

Are you comfortable with things the way they are, with life in general, obsessing and ranting away the day? Is this what it comes down to, taking your survival so seriously that nothing else matters but you? If there is an everyone, it must be true. You must have some corner on what makes it ok to put everyone down, putting everyone behind your self importance. Is that why America is so great, so important? The symbols say otherwise. A thrifty, brave, clean and reverent image is fading, not from lack of new age relevance, but lack of belief that people could be this close to conscience. Do people still have a conscience - are you comfortable not having one? I know that some of us feel for the plight of others, but did those desires to empathize get twisted along the way? Or, is it just self-importance all over again? Is it all about "I gotta be somebody?"

Are you comfortable with your arrogance? Are you the flame or do you simply burn til all is barren? Do you inspire or insist on having it your way no matter how generous the offer of help. Are you the teacher, the observer or the sightseer? Are you changed by what you see? Are you the fire or the clay, are you merely the brick baked by circumstance? What force are you in the world and how do you use that force? Are you beating everyone over the head with your personal savior or is there room for some other form of reverence to take over. Are you the firestorm or the burning bush? How would you make a rational plan to get things done without setting the world on fire. Spirit and energy are both consumed and given freely, shared equally, you think?

Does the need for comfort, all the comforts of home, cause your wallet to hemorrhage  the green blood of quid pro quo? Do all your security issues line up at the door and demand payment? Are you comfortable with the overwhelming need for comfort? Being bullish on luxuries, security, and stubborn willed determination to persist at the expense of everything and everyone you count on is bound to be opening a black hole in your karmic hope chest  that causes a spiritual vacuum large enough to swallow every comfort zone within a city radius. Penniless, without a throne, you’ll only be a hollow reed that tootles in the wind. More enduring than earthly determination, you must plant yourself in luxury’s lap, deserving the fruits of others, where sap will always rise to a stirring occasion.  

Are you comfortable with two-faced duality, talking out of both sides of your face? Say one thing, do another? Do you nod and compromise, placating the people you despise, all the while churning your infantile disappointments into justification for hate? Are you the hated or the hateful? Do you live to cherish your own loathing? Is it not loathsome to be self-loathing? Aspects of self and mortality stand like towers, each a riddle, a definition of a frail being with no clue to who we are. You and yourself are not always the same. We and us do not get along. The concept of brotherly love has evolved from poverty and urban plight, to democracy and freedom's ring. The founding fathers had no idea how far this concept could go. They would be astonished and proud. They would not consider the unintended consequences reason enough to hold back their inspired rhetoric.

Are you a comfortable American, or just clutching onto another body in the backwaters of the local tidal pool. Is your gun rack full? Do you aim to take out the first entity that threatens your sense of security? Can we have enough security? Are the trenches deep enough? Shall we all change into see thru plastic clothing and give up modesty and privacy all together? Are we just foaming at the mouth with unrealistic fear? Cancerian nation, July born, the crab symbol longs for the safety of crepuscular shallows and crannies of the wetland, yet threaten with an armored gesture any approaching vague shape. But, wouldn't you love to sit down to a steaming plate of big blue jimmies? - no longer blue of course, a hue given up for the blaze orange of the happy hunting ground where nothing suffers. The Native Americans have always been the spiritualists and shamans in our midst. How many citizens understand any of that? Are you comfortable with ancient wisdom and spiritual healing, willing to look for a welcome blackbird in a seashell? Can you read it without fear and defensiveness?

What's it like being the king, roaring and lashing out whenever the inflow of tribute, piety and worship cease? How does your birthright make it ok to abuse the people you don't agree with? Especially the people who love you in spite of your kingliness. The last time you spoke about yourself, did it go something like, "You'll be glad you knew me, listen up, take my words to heart, luck rubs off. Do what I do, be flamboyant, take a chance. You only get to be egotistical once. I'm the largest ideal on planet earth, larger than a sunflower, stinking like a marigold, bugs won't even try to light. I am the last cat you want to challenge." Sound familiar? Your pipe, your bowl and fiddlers three are on the house. Donations keep rolling in, though they seem more like something the cat dragged in. There's nothing worse than a lion without money or means. Pretending to be a homeless bon vivant you're not faking it or putting on airs. Outcast, you tom cats know deep down the number one cause for joy and despair.

Symbol of virtue, what's in your comfort zone? You dress in navy and gray, cool babe, legs crossed, a karmic assistant In charge of the 10,000 things, watchful, self-improving, just enough mental mercury to strive, upwardly mobile in both service and repair, always remodeling the human clay. Your stomach is tense, your nerves are nervous in the cubical of life, toes dusty from the women’s camp. Do you have everyone’s issues at heart? Without grim news to report life would be unbearable, so you pray for the foreign. It would take an overseas correspondent with his native idiom and know-how to overcome your self-alienation, that congenital virginity. Not just the gals, you David naked, Adonis, angels on earth - I know what you're thinking. Just service the account. Justify everything with a nit-pick flair for detail, no flaw too common for you to stoop to, conquer and no cause too lowly to defend.  

Oh, the high flying magic, the charms and lush lavishness of life, don't stop, I want it all, you say. Bring it on, love, sex, money! Did I say love? Where is that? Is that not the mere hollow feeling you get when there isn't any? Is that just the co-efficient of sex and money? It must be confusing to get what you want and not have what you need. Order more gifts. Where's my console of technological wonders? Oh, god of mobility and desire, where are you? I need this life and all its input, deliberation, melting pot, diplomatic immunity, I need it like the farmer needs the land. Airy gods of Olympus, hear me. Fly to them Mercury, deliver my plea. Line up the goddesses on TV, let me chose, have another golden apple, I know they're not in season, I have them flown in. I'll take that one, that one and... ah, her, she'll give me all the babies I'll ever need. Oh, wait, I said that to someone else, didn't I, oh well, you can never have enough babies, can you? Or, enough partners, order more beer, party on.

  Are you comfortable with all your dying relatives? Are you taking their money and feeling ok about it? Yeah, they made your life hell, you deserve everything you can get. What makes it ok in your head to dishonor your parents? The Bible aside, does that that really work? Can you take advantage of your parents and expect to get away with it? Your comfort level and your stress syndrome will be telltale enough. You will not fool anyone, your heart will give you away and signal the authorities because all your symbols are twisted. Some aspect of your belief system will make it so you cannot hide what disturbs you. As the Romans say: the poison will leach out. The scorpion will destroy himself with admitted honesty, because he admits, I am a scorpion. That's what scorpions do. But you don't understand that, do you? What would make it ok to do yourself in on purpose? The answer is twisted symbolism. See page 1.

Aren't we happy-go-lucky? Horses thundering, legs and thighs like steaming pistons at work in the curious world. Go do everything everywhere whilst you can. Find your pilot, hair streaming out from his grinning face. All aboard! Don't forget your quiver of freshly ground arrows, that jar of thigh cream. Gotta keep those pistons well-greased. Luck usually needs a push, a shot of Juice, beginners luck, money luck, luck In a foreign country, dumb luck, or blind. it's the luck of the carefree reckless Don Juan, seeking the pleasures of the optimist, a higher life of genial wit; yet a critical tome could come back on the shield of dreams. No one is prepared to give that much freedom before becoming bored with relevance. Does your ever changing self expression make you the ultimate religious heretic, unrealized and alone in a complicated world? Teacher, observer or sightseer, more comfortable in the sketchy zone?

Are you comfortable with your status? The old sea-goat squirms to slime the earth, digs itself up from an ocean of myth. Farmers praise her and queen Rhea in her Capricorn aspect, yet the slug gets salted and loathed for cutting the young stems. For everything there is good and bad. They live in the same ray of hope, stroke of doom. Symbols are dichotomies, opposites merging into the light of awareness. There cannot be a symbol of pure good or evil. The lord of light and dark inhabits everything. We eat as we are being eaten. The high-born do not contemplate such ideas when faced with societal status and repute. But, I suspect that somewhere in the lineage of the self-important there was one unstoppable voice which whispered like a good Roman holding the laurels over the hero's head but taunting, "Fame is fleeting". O, the uneasy fleeting, where is your sense of poetic justice in this? Isn't it all about getting what you deserve? The person with the most toys wins? What makes you squirm?

  Friends, Romans, discontented citizens, turn away from your TV screens, bookmark your laptop, put down that homeopathic newspaper, breathe, live, move, find life in every nook and cranny of your being. It's there, right under your fingernail, out of the corner of your soul-eye, just across the street from where you go fishing in the stream of consciousness. It's not tomorrow land or never land, could be the promise land if only you knew what that meant. It was believed that Jupiter himself would save one of these green plots for you in the happy harvest home of the after land. Who knows, one day you could be preserved forever in one of the Hereafter Inc. global Sleep Care units, able to walk, talk, have sex and drink beer.  Maybe there is a cyber heaven where you get uploaded and downloaded at the whim of a computer.
I don't make fun of heaven because every individual has one. The collective will cannot be denied, this generation or the next will not tolerate death as a wintering-over of souls. Science undoubtedly will conquer the scythe carrying SOB except in the case of criminals. Like a prisoner of condemned sleep he will not be allowed to have sex or drink beer, but will be awakened occasionally for interrogation. Your friends won't tell you this. Comfortable?    

A faithful friend and singer of lost note, used to chime reverently, don't worry, everything gon be everything.  I am a Christian, but reserve the right to edit my own devotions. It's an American thing. Christians, no offense, tend to oil every item of symbolic possibility into outward signs of Christ.  So, all religions prepare a table of earthly reminders for their chosen God, except the ones that forbid icons and statues. Do not forbid me to worship, praise, make significant note of anything twixt heaven and hell. I will not obey, it's a writer thing. I'm familiar with the wages of sin - your life doesn't work. Trust me, because what is sin but a litany of bad choices celebrated by a liturgy of wrong songs. But yes, everything probably will be everything. Comfort and joy will not be the same for all generations. There will always be another Rome where you are better off doing what they do than risking your misbegotten life. I don't see all the hundred shades of difference between the sorrows of the faithful and the sorrows of the lost, except that the faithful, no matter how blind can see the way out of their sorrows. You gotta wonder though, if you are comfortable with that idea, you are probably forbidden to read this. Sorry, this must not be of any comfort to you at all.

Photo by Eugene Brown

© Jimmy Warner, 2011






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