Sucking helium: Ten for Today

Unfazed, tuned-out people amaze and inspire me. I want to be them, wearing bullet and worry proof vests. Mind you, I don’t know who these people are, other than my great niece and nephew, 5 and 8, respectively, who seem to be very selectively tuned in. One knows all the Ducks and Lakers stats, and everything sports, really, and the other knows an incredible array of lyrics and lines from Disney’s Frozen. I’ve heard her sing every word of several songs. That’s what they know. Those comprise their obsessions. Awesome.
 
Me, on the other hand, I start each day trying out the Buddha disposition: be a sieve, let it all flow through. But by about an hour into the day, I fail miserably. Something of the world–outside and inside–disturbs me, disrupts my peace, unbalances promised equilibrium. My promise to myself to be dispassionate about things, all things. I try.
 
News flashes and bites remind me of Doritos Nacho flavored chips. They must be laced with heroin. Probably the only snack I can’t have. Because I can’t just eat one. It’s the bag or nothing. And it’s been that way since they hit the market dozens of years ago.
 
My news services and journal bundling apps, I’ve tailored now to filter out politics and current events–only showing arts, photography, philosophy, yoga, writing, books and music. Same thing with Facebook and Twitter (Not sure what I’m doing on Instagram). Yet something still manages to slip in, riling the perturbations, zinging my zen upside the head.
 
I may have to turn to something quicker and stronger than yoga and meditation, something kick ass to calm my ass. Maybe sucking helium balloons. 

There’s a Woman (Ten for Today)


August 2, 2016
 
I used to have so much fight in me, so much conviction, indignation, righteousness and determination. I was ambition. I was striving.
 
Now I’m heart-fatigued, deadened by weather, watches and people, so I can’t be bothered with so much of what bothered me. My ambitions are quieter, steadier now. And while before everything turned to anger–contradiction, injustice, oppression–now those conditions are met with a profound sadness that shatters my steady, moves my once immovable tears from the dammed up reservoir of hurt, pain, disappointment, fear, shock and panic to come, future furies and frustrations.
 
For example, I know someone who takes advantage of my inability to say no, sometimes. She plays me, and I know it and accept it. I allow her to do that–use me for her own gains and pleasures. I can only surmise I permit her to take advantage; otherwise, I would simply make her stop.
 
That slight, that injustice, that unfairness, how she treats me, would have enraged me in younger days. I would have ached to avenge my pride, my dignity, scraping my imagination with retorts, come-backs, equalizing actions and humiliating reconciliation.
 
But today, I observe her making me uncomfortable, forcing me to vocalize the dirty rotten truth between us. And I watch myself watching her watching me. Awaiting the courage and the words, I witness her machinations, manipulations and movements, and mull the situation over, slightly anxious, confident the solution will find me.

Meditation

  
Hold hands in equanimity,

knuckles to knee, soft palm up,

elbows east and west to the sea,

or thumbs poised right angle to

index, cupping the joint round.

Lotus springs from the dead

but loving breath warms limb, 

left foot rising over right over

left again, balance in the being

synced forth in a becoming to

the rhythmic beam’s third eye.

Hold hands, heart with mind,

hear the calm of 10,000 years

in lungfuls of uncharted time.  

War

  

The war raged a life time, blood and brains dashed to the ground only to be resurrected repeatedly like an ungrateful Lazarus or an unrepentant Prometheus caught in an eternal circle.

One side fought for the good of progress, bravery, cleverness and right action. This side delivered the goods, made the world go round and fed the hungry, sheltered the vulnerable from the elements by sheer will to control.

The other side ceded control, refused to fight and surrendered before the battle began. This side stomped itself invisible, passive and weakly withdrawn, drawn to a light no one could see, a lost vision never achieved, destination never reached.

While one side won the battle, the other won the war. While one side walked in the light, the other created it. However, neither side rested in confidence nor in peace, both sides claiming no victory in vanquishing the other.