June 27th, 2008

Book Cover

To begin

The birds are twittering amidst the fog, and Joan posts this. I do too. It is important to remember what continues to go on as the media slows reports on Iraq.

hot air balloon

Presence -

To Look at Any Thing
To look at any thing,
If you would know that thing,
You must look at it long:
To look at this green and say,
"I have seen spring in these
Woods," will not do - you must
Be the thing you see:
You must be the dark snakes of
Stems and ferny plumes of leaves,
You must enter in
To the small silences between
The leaves,
You must take your time
And touch the very peace
They issue from.
~ John Moffitt ~
(Teaching With Fire, edited by S. M. Intrator and M. Scribner)
alan's marigolds

This morning -

I am aware we live in what appears to be a binary world of life and death,

and yet, each moment, cells in me and you,  birth and die.

Do neighboring cells grieve at the loss of a friend?

Is that why we need sadness to glue our joy?

I am aware that as I age there will be more cells dying in me, and less replacement.

So, too, possibly with family and friends, though now I see how that expands outward as we age; family and friends increase, even as we let go of some.

Perhaps, each of us is a supernova, and it is to let go with all that light.

I am trying to teach myself to greet death with a little more joy.  It is my practice for this day, without demand, just noticing and delighting in the shimmering play that rainbows my life.

egg stone


I admit to being a Pixar junkie, so I knew I had to see Wall-e as soon as it came out.  Since I fell asleep last night at 10:30, the 12:01 AM show at our local big theater was out, so we saw the 2:00 PM along with many children and parents.

Wow!!   Al Gore couldn't have done it better.  Anyone who walks out of there without planning a visit to their local nursery is nuts. 

When I saw all the children in the audience, I expected some noise and commotion, especially when it began with such muted tones, which looked just like our outdoors of the day.  The smoke continues to blanket our world.

The little girl next to me, who was about eight, literally sat on the edge of her chair, the entire movie.  The children seemed riveted, and this is an extremely moralistic tale.  A diamond ring is tossed in the trash.   A plant with three leaves, then, two, is the hero of the movie.

It was odd to walk out of the theater to darkened skies, and cold blowing clouds, and yet, lightning fires are natural in California.  It is how many plants release their spores and it feels ominous to see such a movie and walk out into such gloom in the late-afternoon.

I give Wall-e thumbs up, and think Pixar might have worried they were taking a risk in making such a moralistic movie and yet it was well-received by children and adults.  It was like the audience was stunned.  This is a movie to change the world.  Children were riveted and absorbed and this is the message we want them to see.  I don't think many of us will be drinking through straws for awhile and a long walk through the woods and digging in the dirt will be just the ticket.  I assume there won't be toys to go along with this movie.  If there are, it would seem to dilute the point.

This is a movie for our times.  It is literally and figuratively ground-breaking.  Stay for the credits.  They, too, are beautifully done.

This movie recognizes that love, happiness, survival, and joy are not about more stuff, and the stuff is killing us and our planet.  It is time for change.

This is a great movie for us all to see, and I was thrilled to see so many children there with their parents.  Since it is rated G, parents might have dropped their children off, but it seemed that no one did.  It was a family event, and yes, I'll go for corny and say it.  We are all family.   After a movie like this, corny is in, and the corn grows luxurious and tall, like the corn of my childhood.  After all, "I'm from Iowa, Iowa.  That's where the tall corn grows."

alan's marigolds

smoke -

I commented to Jane this morning that even before I was aware of the smoke a few days ago, I noticed a change in the habits of my cats.  Suddenly they were in the house.  There was no sunning on the deck.   They stayed very close.  

Jane said her neighboring cats have halted their morning explorations and there are no raccoons at night.  The animals know and seem hunkered.  We all seem a bit stunned.    It is unrealistic to expect rain this time of year and yet I don't know how else we are going to clear the air. 

Again, it is odd to see a movie like WALL-E and to walk in and out of the theater to such strange air.  The impact is strengthened, though with such a movie, the impact was enough.  

Some reviewers have commented that there are two movies, the first half and the second.   Yes, there is more drama when the humans enter.  What else would one expect?