LEARNING TO OUTGROW LIFE HERE

Although age slags and weakens my body

Though my agility, flexibility grow heavy and stiff

My soul grows, grows light, fills with light

Enlightenment matters more than matter

Wisdom—age’s donation to

This deteriorating flesh—

Grows as powers fail and hours fill

With matters other than those of the body

Other realms than matter suggest

Youth’s vibrant spirit

Returning in other realms when

This matter has had enough and spirit matters

My purpose here fulfilled

My soul outgrown this flesh and bone

This mortal community, camaraderie

As age passes on its lessons

Learning to outgrow life here

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AN UNEASY GENERATION GAP

I could be his grandfather

So a peer relationship is likely not in the mix

Yet his expertise surpasses my own

An expertise I need

Technology

The bane of the aged

The bond of the ages

Generating the collaboration which is the extent of our bond

He declined money

Our signifiers differ significantly

So collaboration and my interest in the youth world

From the perspective of my so different world

So different signifiers

His life ahead of him, much of mine behind me

My crippling need of his expertise, coupled with his self-confidence

Technology

Will collaboration serve for a peer relationship

Our mutual interests

Our alliance uneasy

Our uneasy generation gap

LIVING MY OWN LIFE

Existential isolation was

En vogue

When I was in school

(Probably still is)

To which I added drunken dissipation

Upon graduation I found sobriety

And was terribly alone

Outside the “we” program

Despising my loneliness

In an otherwise paradisaical climate

 

I no longer feel alone

Which begins with Carol and us

There is the small church

Sacred community

In a world that has no place for religion

Out of vogue

 

Trends

 

But I have Carol

I have the church

I have sacred community

Which means more than any trend

I live my own life

I pay the consequences, reap the rewards

And think very little about some social construct of vogue

A VANTAGE POINT

I don’t know if it was four days of Tylenol

Or fever

Or four days bedridden, . . .

But I saw my whole life in a vision

In a critique

God tried to touch me

I fear I don’t have the strength

To sustain God’s touch

Slipping back may have consequences

Too dire to contemplate

I had a glimpse

I have a vantage-point

I see where I have been

A part of me won’t be the same again

KNOWING WHAT LIFE HAS GIVEN

I have the gift of perspective

The gift of years and experiences

The time and capacity for reflection

Fruitful reflection to realize

The fulfillment I have . . .

I have struggled to get somewhere

And with the struggle over I have found myself nowhere

And I have grit my teeth

Steadfastly endured miserable circumstances

I have passed time—years—just getting by

Getting by, not living—quelle dommage, pity, year after year, getting by

Impoverished

Smoking cigar after cigar

Not even paying attention to the life going by

Alone

Hours, years did go by

Alone, impoverished

Then today . . .  and I have fulfillment

When did it come?  For how long has it been?

A calling,–is it that?—music, friendships, love

Volunteer responsibilities, travel, lifelong learning, research work

Fulfillment

Embraced in rich connections

Purpose, position, ownership

Comfort, contentment without complacency,

Community

I have the gift of perspective

Time and perspective and reflection

Giving me wonder at what I have, have humbly been granted

Granted with the time I have

LIFE HERE, PROPERLY UNDERSTOOD

We live in this world

The only one we know

We make arrangements

Build hopes, aspirations

Purchase goods

To fit our life here

In a world which is only leased to us, at best

For an unknown term

Certainly, some of our efforts in this world

Translate

To the other world

Certainly, much will not

“We come into the world, and we go out of the world”

The Mayans remember each morning

Certainly, we must provide for life here

Properly understood

TIMECLOCK

I limped and struggled through it all

In an unforgiving, uncaring world

“Punch a time clock,” the world insisted

But I can’t even wake up, get out of bed

–I’ve slept my own weekends away—

What have I done to deserve this?

Punch a time clock

So I limped and struggled through it all

I had to

Some would say my work was half-assed

Not knowing, not caring about the extent of my effort to get out of bed

“I can’t see your bipolar disorder.”

Don’t care

Punch a time clock

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