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Hi.

Thanks for stopping by.  This is my invitation into my life, work, and our collective creativity, love, and kindness.  I hope you enjoy your time here.  

WILDERNESS

WILDERNESS

Life and Death. 

I read a book a while ago by Peter Rollins called the Divine Magician. (Check it out here.) It is a great book full of interesting ideas; Peter Rollins is an amazing thinker and communicator.  But one of the things that stuck with me most is how he wrote about the concept of being alive.  In the Bible, when death is referenced, it is most often referring to a way of living and not to ceasing to be alive.  He says,
"While death is a reality for all living creatures, in the story of Adam and Eve we witness the description of a death that operates within life, a death that is manifested in this incessant   inner drive that causes us to act against ourselves.  This acts as a major motif in the biblical literature, which often uses the term death to describe a form of life rather than the end of life."

I am not trying to argue anything about the Bible, but I think it is important for us to think about the concept that we can live alive or we can live dead.  Peter Rollins goes on to write, "For the desire to rid ourselves of desire is paradoxically a pursuit of death, for it is only in a death like state that desire and longing can be extinguished." 

Sometimes, I feel like my whole life has been a quest to extinguish, or at least limit, my desires, feelings, and emotions.  Culturally, we're uncomfortable with the tension that being alive inherently brings.  

Most people I know that are living alive have had to struggle and fight to stay alive.  They are often the sensitive ones, they see things, they pay attention.  They feel. Often, they feel raw.  I have always felt like I am a constant dose of too much and not enough.  Feeling + vulnerability = terrifying.  It seems that either way, life feels disconnected.

Monday, my mother in law spoke at her sister's funeral.  She ended by telling the story of when she got to her sister's home right after her death.  My mother in law immediately knew that her sister was gone.  She looked the same as she often had near the end of her life, asleep in her bed, peaceful.  This time though, my mother in law knew that even though her body was there, she was gone.  She bravely ended, "I felt left behind.  And I don't like it."

Death is grief.  Death is disconnection.  Death is loneliness.  We can no longer share all that we want, and need, to share.  

Sometimes, death looks the same as life if we're not paying attention.  But when we start to pay attention, there is a new kind of pain.  It is alive that we feel heartbreak, overwhelming sorrow, fear, and hurt.  However, it is also alive that we feel hope, joy, connection, and love.  Often when we're alive, these all exist at once, making the experience of being alive even more difficult and confusing.  

The problem is, YOU ARE ALIVE.  So we can keep seeking the comfort of death, dishonoring our humanity and the grief and heartbreak that death is, or we can fight to keep caring, engaging, desiring, and loving, even when it is painful.  

Wilderness is a poem that I wrote about living.  My experience is one of sensitivity, fear, anxiety, scattered (ADHD), rhythms, and intensity.  My experience is deep and meaningful and beautiful.  My experience is painful and terrifying.  It is often exhausting.  I fight to find my home in myself and in a community where I often feel misunderstood.  "Everything you need outside" is written to remind us that not only does the earth provide what we need but also that we are enough just as we are.  It also represents the struggle that so many of us experience when we don't trust those truths and instead seek to be what we think everyone else wants us to be.  "Nonsense" at the end also holds a double meaning.  I find my home in the nonsense that often seems to characterize my brain, and I find my home in the nonsense of a culture that often makes me wildly uncomfortable (and I often make uncomfortable).  At times I find my way of naturally operating nonsense, I also find our culturally normal pursuits and priorities nonsense.  We navigate many worlds in this one world.  One of my favorite worlds is the WILDERNESS. 

i dwell in the wilderness
at home in the mess
a wild child inside
but everything you need
outside

i dwell in the wilderness
at home in the forest
intuitive, fierce inside
but everything you need
outside

i dwell in the wilderness
at home in the chaos
primal survival inside
but everything you need
outside

i dwell in the wilderness
at home in my breath
barbaric, free inside
escape
abandoned, shameless
i find my home in the
nonsense

 

LET FREEDOM RING!

LET FREEDOM RING!

ALCHEMY

ALCHEMY

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