How to watch #bay2breakers (at Golden Gate Park Panhandle)
And from a cliff-top is proclaimed
The gathering of the souls for birth,
The trial by existence named,
The obscuration upon earth… .
And the more loitering are turned
To view once more the sacrifice
Of those who for some good discerned
Will gladly give up paradise… .
And none are taken but who will,
Having first heard the life read out
That opens earthward, good and ill,
Beyond the shadow of a doubt… .
Nor is there wanting in the press
Some spirit to stand simply forth,
Heroic in its nakedness,
Against the uttermost of earth… .
But always God speaks at the end:
“One thought in agony of strife
The bravest would have by for friend,
The memory that he chose the life;
But the pure fate to which you go
Admits no memory of choice,
Or the woe were not earthly woe
To which you gave the assenting voice.”
And so the choice must be again,
But the last choice is still the same;
And the awe passes wonder then,
And a hush falls for all acclaim.
And God has taken a flower of gold
And broken it, and used therefrom
The mystic link to find and hold
Spirit to matter till death come.
‘Tis of the essence of life here,
Though we choose greatly, still to lack
The lasting memory at all clear,
That life has for us on the wrack
Nothing but what we somehow chose;
Thus are we wholly stripped of pride
In the pain that has but one close,
Bearing it crushed and mystified.
You live like this, sheltered, in a delicate world, and you believe you are living. Then you read a book …, or you take a trip, … and you discover that you are not living, that you are hibernating. The symptoms of hibernating are easily detectable: first, restlessness. The second symptom (when hibernating becomes dangerous and might degenerate into death): absence of pleasure. That is all. It appears like an innocuous illness. Monotony, boredom, death. Millions live like this (or die like this) without knowing it. They work in offices. They drive a car. They picnic with their families. They raise children. And then some shock treatment takes place, a person, a book, a song, and it awakens them and saves them from death.
The Diary of Anaïs Nin
at Hotel deLuxe
Portland is adorable. (at Portland Farmers Market)
The saddest holocaust memorial I’ve seen. (at Washington Park Oregon Holocaust Memorial)
When you’re making love, you’re not there at the very beginning, you’re a little bit shy. And then you’ll say, how am I going to perform? And then all of a sudden you are totally there. Your body and your soul. So, if it is only your body, it’s half of the pleasure, or less than that. So you’re totally there. Writing is like making love to a computer.
The Cabin in the Forest at the Glen Oaks Big Sur
These trees are huge! I’ve visited these huge redwoods along the coast of California many times, and I don’t think I could ever get used to how gigantic they really are. It’s almost like an alien planet!
The cabin there is one of the many varied rooms at the Glen Oaks. They are all different, but each one is nicely appointed. I’m recommending this place to my friends who are looking for awesome lodgings in the Big Sur area!
- Trey Ratcliff
Click here to read the rest of this post at the Stuck in Customs blog.
There is one thing in this world that you must never forget to do. If you forget everything else and not this, there’s nothing to worry about; but if you remember everything else and forget this, then you will have done nothing in your life.
It’s as if a king has sent you to some country to do a task, and you perform a hundred other services, but not the one he sent you to do. So human beings come to this world to do particular work. That work is the purpose, and each is specific to the person. If you don’t do it, it’s as though a priceless Indian sword were used to slice rotten meat It’s a golden bowl being used to cook turnips, when one filing from the bowl could buy a hundred suitable pots. It’s a knife of the finest tempering nailed into a wall to hang things on.
You say, “But look, I’m using the dagger It’s not lying idle.” Do you hear how ludicrous that sounds? For a penny, an iron nail could be bought to serve the purpose. You say, “But I spend my energies on lofty enterprises. I study jurisprudence and philosophy and logic and astronomy and medicine and all the rest.” But consider why you do those things.They are all branches of yourself.
Remember the deep root of your being, the presence of your lord. Give your life to the one who already owns your breath and your moments. If you don’t you will be exactly like the man who takes a precious dagger and hammers it into his kitchen wall for a peg to hold his dipper gourd. You’ll be wasting valuable keenness and foolishly ignoring your dignity and your purpose.
—The inimitable Rumi
I’m convinced that James Baldwin’s heartbreaking short story Sonny’s Blues, about his jazz musician and heroin-addict brother, contains some of the best writing about how music can transform and profoundly affect a person. The final scene in the jazz club is perfect and powerful.
I’m reminded of Woody Allen’s line in Manhattan:
I think the essence of art is to provide a kind of working-through situation, so that you can get in touch with feelings you didn’t know you had.
Here’s Baldwin toward the end of the piece:
[W]hile the tale of how we suffer, and how we are delighted, and how we may triumph is never new, it always must be heard. There isn’t any other tale to tell, it’s the only light we’ve got in all this darkness.