Wednesday, December 22, 2004
For Emily

The Language
The desire for truth is confronted with poems, with tales written by you long ago. And then you are ashamed, because it was all sheer myth. Neither did any of it happen, nor did you feel the feelings contained therein. The language itself unfurled its velvet yarn in order to cover what, without it, would equal nothing. -Czeslaw Milosz

There seems to be a bit of drama hanging about. I was walking alone in the woods recently. The sounds were amazing. I was so cold that the most prominent sound was my shaking body. After tuning that out, other sounds became more apparent. I think it was the dead mouse that triggered it. Seeing the dead mouse tangled in dry leaves and not partially eaten in any way made me wonder about its arrival just to the left of my path. It made me think that walking with someone beside me or in front of me or behind me would qualify my steps, my direction, my meaning and mood. Really, the path I was walking was quite familiar, but not the same - never the same. My most meaningful, meditative and astonishing walks were the solitary ones. The time of day, the position of the sun, the weather all play a part, to be sure, but the talk is what destroys it all. Quiet perspective is not likely with a companion other than the voice of God in your Spirit. Other voices are loud. His is quiet. After the thinking subsides from images and memories that have been talked out, reflection and surprise set in - this is triggered by the most mundane rock, weed, bird, tree or mouse hidden in dry leaves. The delicacy of both sound and silence are lost to walkers. The walker alone becomes these.

I was confronted with self today. It came in a post card from Emily Stetzer who is loving people in El Salvador right now. I hope I am not out of place to share her questions with you, as well as what they did to me. The post card said - it read:

dear mister graf,

how do you balance being
honest and being honorable?

being true to yourself and
being true to your word?

in peace and turmoil,

emily joy
I was a bit disturbed at the first and second reading of this. I hold Emily in high regard and know her to be a deeply insightful and spiritual person. I was concerned that maybe God told her something about me and I was getting a direct chastisement from my maker. I wondered whom Emily had been conversing with and what I had done now? After being awakened from my self-centeredness by two lovely friends, I re-read the card to mean that perhaps Emily was in need of direction. I, of course, have no direction to give, but I do have stories and a good deal of non-answers - so here is my feeble attempt, and I am sure that Emily and I will welcome any additional insight and input to this little problem from any and all Holy and well meaning spirits who happen upon this verbal spillage.

The first story I think of is found in Genesis. Jacob works seven years for a wife by the name of Rachael. He is given Leah instead and must work seven more years for Rachael. He did this and counted the time as nothing because of love. Words were given and taken back. Justification was given and accepted. What suffering must be had for truth and the desire of our hearts? What are the desires of our hearts? These are individual questions that cannot be answered universally. This makes me wonder: Who would not want purity of heart? I know purity of heart to be the very essence of willing one thing. What do you will? Will it make you pure in heart? The second story is about a man who got drunk and had his legs run over by a horse drawn carriage. You can read about it in the archives.

So, this is the beginning of my thinking, and more is sure to come. I have very little information to address Emily's questions in a detailed and personal manner. I have my own balance to find, and I am sure that other humans cannot intentionally help me and expect me to receive it gladly. I think Emily's questions were rhetorical and therefore not needing answers, only stories and love. Of course there is Ann's voice going off in my head again: "Just tell me what you are trying to say and stop being so convoluted about it."
It is my way of using many words to tell you that I do not know. It is my way of saying love. You can always turn off the monitor. That is not such a bad thing now and then. A walk in the woods may be just what is needed right now.

- posted by -g @ 5:10 AM | | 0 rocks in pond


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