Today is another day.
I keep forgetting to look at the date. Know it’s Monday.
I know I have to go home tomorrow.
I’m both ready and not ready to go home. Ready because it’s time. I’ve been gone over 2 weeks. I do have responsibilities and a son and a dog and a house and work and bills and friends and a life.
Not ready because don’t we all need respite? A time away from the everyday, away from all of the above. A time to re-group, re-think (or think, in my case). A time to be new and unknown. I spent a nice half hour eating ice cream and talking with a local about life in Sedona. I told him that it seemed like living here would put someone in a constant state of “mouth agape”…. just awe and wonder. I mean, leaving a parking lot and looking up, driving down the street…the beauty here is astounding. It makes me want to hike (and I am not a hiker), ride bikes (again, not me), do more and more yoga (which is a bit me). His wife came along and we talked, and she mentioned how she was not all new-agey, but that there was an undeniable spiritual sense here. I can see that, feel that. I think I wrote before that I find myself weeping a lot. It doesn’t feel sad, it feels like some sort of mixture of relief and gratitude, if that makes sense.
I also wrote it felt like home. I don’t take that back, but know that I am caught up in the moment. A little restraint is in order…I have to stop looking at every old man on the street as possible rich husband material.
God, though…as I sit outside overlooking the creek at the Inn and write this..oh, how I want to stay! But I know it’s a dream. And the thing is that dreams are good and vital and important, and I still actually believe that they can come true. I don’t know why, but I do. I think it’s because, while faith is elusive to me, hope is not. And without hope you (let’s say it all together!) die. There has been a running joke about Thelma and Louise throughout this trip. Part of that had to do with the wonderful time and fun I was having with my friend Nancy, the other part about my trip to the Grand Canyon.
I didn’t go to the Grand Canyon. I didn’t want to be there and think of Thelma and Louise. I get scared sometimes when I staunchly hold on to hope, sometimes by my fingernails, that I will lose it. I don’t want to be at the Grand Canyon if that happens.
Anyway, my friend Sassy reminds me that first there is a vision, there needs to be a vision. I don’t really have that vision yet. Or it’s scattered, I don’t know. But what I feel has been happening to me on this trip is that my world is opening in some mysterious way again. I don’t fully understand it, but it feels like a gasp for air after being underwater for a long time. I think that gasp began when I decided to get sober, and maybe this is step two. I feel change though, I do. In myself, the only place it can start “Be the change you want to see in the world”…right?
There is a poem I have been reading (actually I have been reading a lot of poetry lately, it’s been calling me). It’s by W. S Merwin and called For The Anniversary Of My Death.
Every year without knowing it I have passed the day
When the last fires will wave to me
And the silence will set out
Like the beam of a lightless star
Then I will no longer
Find myself in life as in a strange garment
Surprised at the earth
And the love of one woman
And the shamelessness of men
As today writing after three days of rain
Hearing the wren sing and the falling cease
And bowing not knowing to what.
Gorgeous poem. And I had never, never thought of this….that each and every day I am looking at my last day on earth in a very literal sense. Sure, every day is important, that I get. But staring at the idea of a last day is new for me, even though it shouldn’t be. And the idea of life as a “strange garment”, so resonates for me. Who am I really, what stories have I been telling myself and others about myself. It feels important now to understand this, to truly grasp who I am and who I will be for this , the last part of my life, and that’s what it is. A thought I haven’t consciously had but which is knocking quietly at my head now. I am working this poem over and over and the themes in it, trying to grasp it all, but the “anniversary of my death”…that is clear, I get that now.
And “bowing not knowing to what”…..just beautiful.
Well…all of that by the creek at the Briar Patch Inn in Sedona Arizona.
I have a lot to think about, but, clearly, I am being reminded that i have a lot to DO too.
And it’s time to start doing things that can only be done at home, in L.A. so that I can hold on to the hope that there is more for me to do in the bigger world and the bigger space of my life.
I don’t really think any of that depends on a rich old codger. Thank god!