Now we are all afraid. Everyone is really afraid. You don’t need me to tell you that. But it seems I have to say it first so you know you can feel it out loud in front of me.
Before we were shocked. Then appalled. Then numb. And over time and smaller ups and downs and eyes turning away and hands held up in the air to say stop. Please stop. I can’t take anymore. I can’t know this today. Over that time it brought us to here. To raw fear.
That is maybe what God sees as his giant face is whipped out of air and cloud into shape. All consuming and breathing of objects and souls as fire takes and takes and leaves us with the nutrients to grow anew. That is maybe what God sees.
Let my hurricane make metaphor anew what is true. You have consumed what you cannot digest. And therefore the earth will explode in violent protest. Throw up all you have laid in waste. Until you are covered, surrounded, overwhelmed by fear.
Let my fire smoke rise into your canopy, into the parachute you are hiding under. Do you remember that lovely, bright protected feeling? It is burned. You have burned up your own breath. And therefore the earth will inhale over scarred tissue. Giants clefts in the surface, rivers, branches and tributaries, alveoli all rippling as air pulls through it. And it will hurt.
But let’s look away for a minute because it’s too sad. Let’s stop for a minute over something good. What good thing is enough right to stop for?
Amid the bustling of all of us, the smiling and the blank, the myriad of hues and shapes and ages, all is hope. All is hope and goodness advancing. Father, gently stroke your baby. Friend, generously delight in delight. Aged, sing and talk and scatter yourself among us. Young, invest in yourselves. Take a chance. Stand with toes dangling over ridiculous. All is hope. And you as hope are beyond beautiful.
Oh remember hope and see the trees that are planted. Seedlings sprouted and so different from one another. All of us in the springtime clinging and strong, in the summer translucent and wide, and now gently exposing ourselves. You see our true colors shining through.
My mind is all taken up into the air. Laying on the ground and looking up through these remembered trees and beyond. I am all but dwelling in the other world. Space and stars and galaxies beyond. Daydreaming of night skies. Of rocket boys and girls looking up. Of pictures I have seen somewhere before. Of swirls and lights that assure me our big mistakes are still so very small. I’m looking up for reassurance; away from that little whisper of fear every morning, growing louder every day. I hope it’s not too late.
I think, is this why we went to the moon? Why our fathers turned their boy heads up to imagine it? Why our mothers made telescopes from paper towel tubes? Is this why they went dreaming up there? Because they were afraid?
Seasons and time, orbits and distance from light and heat, clinging and letting go. We do it. It will be done. It has always been done. Letting go is coming. Stillness is coming. Winter is coming. Why does it feel different this time? Why does it feel violent?
If you sit us each down and ask us, how many will shrug at the question of allegiance to evil. An angry and immature few. If you sit us each down and ask us, where is it? Will we point? There. There. There there.
If you sit us each down and ask us, will you fight it? How many of us will ask next, how? When? We look at each other for signs. Nod yes, it’s past time. The world is falling apart. But I hear the cicadas. And sometimes at night we need a jacket. The corn is tall and waving. Soon the reds and golds and amber leaves will glisten and tighten and drop into the trickling water below. We are running out of time.
Time will not freeze. It is dripping into reality like ice on which teeter the little villages on the edges of our world.
Time will not freeze. It is dripping into consequence like words sprayed onto concrete walls and cold against our pressed faces.
Time will not freeze. Though we want it to, though we want to catch up and clean up and redo and revamp. Damp is the slope before the drain to the pool where it comes due and collects interest. Compounding and sounding like ticks and seconds off counting. Off clocks. Of drowning. Like drops. Like drops amounting.
It is a fact that our quest for love and amounting keeps our currents flowing. Going and upon us floating leaves with color showing. Red and orange and yellow green, green eyes following.
Everywhere these objectives keep us fishing. Reaching out over the water’s surface, fingertips stretched to grasp the edges. To pull the dripping veiny beauties into artistic pursuits. Dry and press and laminate. Oh wait. The water is continuously going.
Going, bubbling, and it will not freeze. Oh wait. Wait.
Don’t let it be too late.
Featured Image: “Nebulous” by Jan Brandt