They Put On New Skin

I have quiet mind. I ask for quiet mind then worry what to do when I get it. I have nothing to say when I get it. The world is the one who has something to say. All this while I am sitting at the cafe. Overhearing a woman at the checkout stand say she cannot sleep without the TV on, I am thankful this is not one of my problems. In front of me is the newspaper telling about the three police recently dead in Baton Rouge. Red Stick, blood stuck in the muck. And the two black men before them. But something else quiet beneath them. I remember being eleven years old on 9/11 and I was only upset the adults were pressuring us kids to get frantic, take it personally. But every damn night on the evening news before and after this day there are stories of bloodshed and death. But this one is exceptional, every new bloody death is unheard of. This is not cynical. It would bring us all together and make us feel angry and proud, make us feel what we’re missing. Everyday thousands and millions of people die and I learned at an early age to not to pay mind to the news, instead to drop under into the pulse of the world, the sandstone raw ground of the soft belly below. Down here there’s more sense. We can mourn our dead as they call out to be loved, making sense of the senseless because it is in this place, not in the nightly news, but in the underworld where we finally approach the hugeness that is death, and yet its nothingness, its normalcy. To live in love of the world is not to be “worldly”, not to think that the world is the shadow facade that is shown in the papers. The world comes to us all, embraces the dead to say live again, here in my bosom find life anew. You are remembered and never forgotten. Here there is love. To be in relationship with the world is to turn away from the anger that passes for news, because it isn’t the real news of the world. The real news is that the dead have already found heaven because they began to find it in life and now they live again in a new way. They put on new skin, come out between the legs or cut belly of a different mother again. The news of the world is the truth that we can only live on a personal scale, turn back into animals when the curtain falls. We do not access the world by becoming engorged on society’s drama. The society is not the world. Draw closer to the soul of the world this way: stare into a single seed of a tree. Written history is a pile of dead bodies. Watch the worms crawling away from it, carrying words of love from the dead, transporting their atoms to wombs. You want to remember the dead? You want to love them and tell them they still matter. So do I. You’ll have better luck finding them in the face of the river, in the endless mirror. Turn out the heart to be wrung in the rain and the sun. Behold the beautiful young men. Listen to the gallant young women. Draw close to them. They’re carrying life. You’ll be back here again.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *