Today At Meetingbrook

Saturday, April 05, 2014

uncoverable


The thing about spies is they use truth like they use people.

Both are malleable and disposable.

It does not seem to be worth the trouble tell the truth or keep in touch.

We are killed for reasons we don’t understand and are told lies for no good reason at all.

Friday, April 04, 2014

a funny sentence happened on the way to word


When young, I wanted to live a life of prayer.

Listening, says James Hillman, is akin to prayer: “Prayer has been described as an active silence in which one listens acutely for the still small voice, as if prayer were not asking and getting through to God, but becoming so composed that [God] might come through to me.” 
(Insearch, p.16) (cf. The Word’s Body: An Incarnational Aesthetic of Interpretation, by Alla Bozarth-Campbell, p.85)
Permanently  
One day the Nouns were clustered in the street.
An Adjective walked by, with her dark beauty.
The Nouns were struck, moved, changed.
The next day a Verb drove up, and created the Sentence. 
Each Sentence says one thing—for example, "Although it was a dark
   rainy day when the Adjective walked by, I shall remember the pure
   and sweet expression on her face until the day I perish from the
   green, effective earth."
Or, "Will you please close the window, Andrew?"
Or, for example, "Thank you, the pink pot of flowers on the window
   sill has changed color recently to a light yellow, due to the heat from
   the boiler factory which exists nearby."
In the springtime the Sentences and the Nouns lay silently on the grass.
A lonely Conjunction here and there would call, "And! But!"
But the Adjective did not emerge. 
As the adjective is lost in the sentence,
So I am lost in your eyes, ears, nose, and throat--
You have enchanted me with a single kiss
Which can never be undone
                                                                                                     Until the destruction of language.
(Poem, Permanently,  by Kenneth Koch)
Now much older, I prefer to live a life of prayer.

Funny, eh?

The good don't die young. The word you're looking for is 'murder.'


"Has anybody here seen my old friend Martin?" -- asked the song.

I thought not.

Smoke 'em if ya got 'em.

And thanks for looking.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Is the deed ever really done


Serial killers and mass killers disturb us. Profilers and psychologists get busy explaining things. Soon we tire. We look around wondering: What’s next?

I take some time to review and think about O.J. Simpson, the crime, the case, the characters in courtroom. Then I watch the curious Discovery documentary about a man, Glen Rogers, on death row who his brother claims killed Ms Brown-Simpson and Mr Goldman in 1994.
People who study Buddhism   
Should seek real, true  
Perception and understanding for now.  
If you attain real, true  
Perception and understanding,  
Birth and death don't affect you;  
You are free to go or stay.  
You needn't seek wonders,  
For wonders come of themselves.                                          
                - Linji (d. 867?)
I come across a piece written by someone who knew a fellow I studied with in the early sixties in Callicoon NY. It reminded me of what happened to Dennis in 1997. 
Two Troopers, Judge, Editor Killed In Spree  
Police Slay New Hampshire Suspect 
 August 20, 1997|  By The Boston Globe 
.COLEBROOK, N.H. — A man enraged over property disputes went on a killing spree Tuesday in this town near the Canadian border, killing two law officers, a part-time judge and a newspaper editor before he was slain by police after fleeing into Vermont, according to witnesses. Carl C. Drega, 67, of Columbia, N.H., shot another police officer before confronting 20 officers from four law enforcement agencies in Bloomfield, Vt.  ...  
There, police said, he shot lawyer Vickie Bunnell, 44, a part-time judge whose office was in the building, and the paper’s co-editor, Dennis Joos, 50. 
...  
Joos, who once had studied to be a priest, tackled Drega and, in the ensuing struggle, was shot in the spine, witnesses said. "He dragged Dennis for about 15 feet. I think Dennis had already been shot and was just clutching on to him," reporter Claire Knapper said. “Drega told him to mind his own (expletive) business." 
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1997-08-20/news/9708200087_1_police-cruiser-police-car-dennis-joos
Also cf. http://www.theppsc.org/Archives/DF_Articles/Files/NewHampshire/Colebrook/Drega_Shooting.htm 

The writer included an image from probably 1964 in his blog: 


Here’s what’s interesting about the yearbook entry and the newspaper article -- the oddity of coincidence. The man who shot and killed Dennis was named Drega. In Dennis’ yearbook some 33 years earlier, under ‘Aspiration’ -- the words: “To work with the dregs of Society.”

Yeats words help put this in context: 
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; 
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, 
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere 
The ceremony of innocence is drowned; 
The best lack all conviction, while the worst 
Are full of passionate intensity.  

Surely some revelation is at hand; 
                            (--from The Second Coming, poem by William Butler Yeats) 
Drega; dregs -- surely something is at hand here!

I liked Dennis. He had a Salinger-like quality to him. 

Words are more mysterious than soft snow in mud time.
Out of the wood two hulking tramps  
(From sleeping God knows where last night,  
But not long since in the lumber camps). 
They thought all chopping was theirs of right.  
Men of the woods and lumberjacks,  
They judged me by their appropriate tool.  
Except as a fellow handled an ax  
They had no way of knowing a fool.  

Nothing on either side was said. 
 
They knew they had but to their stay  
And all their logic would fill my head:  
As that I had no right to play  
With what was another mans work for gain.  
My right might be love but theirs was need.  
And where the two exist in twain  
Theirs was the better right--agreed.  

But yield who will to their separation, 
 
My object in living is to unite  
My avocation and my vocation  
As my two eyes make one in sight.  
Only where love and need are one,  
And the work is play for mortal stakes, 
 Is the deed ever really done  
For Heaven and the futures sakes. 
           (--from Two Tramps in Mud Time, poem by Robert Frost) 
I think of Dennis. I’m glad to remember.

Something, no doubt, about New Hampshire.

Sentiment and sediment.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Window finally open


Maine morning.



Gathering a crowd.



National peanut butter and jelly day.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

If still possible

Who's foolin'?
I'll tip my hat to the new constitution 
Take a bow for the new revolution 
Smile and grin at the change all around me 
Pick up my guitar and play 
Just like yesterday 
Then I'll get on my knees and pray 
We don't get fooled again 
Don't get fooled again 
No, no! 
(Excerpt from Wont Get Fooled Again, lyrics by Peter Townshend, The Who)
Maybe not.
CIA Misled Public About Interrogation Program: Report
Reuters

04/01/2014
April 1 (Reuters) - The Central Intelligence Agency misled the U.S. government and public for years about aspects of its brutal interrogation program, concealing details about harsh treatment of detainees and other issues, according to a report in the Washington Post.
U.S. officials who have seen a Senate Intelligence Committee report on the CIA interrogation program described damning new information about a network of secret detention facilities, also called "black sites", the Washington Post said.
The Intelligence Committee is responsible for oversight of the CIA. It completed the 6,300-page draft report on the interrogation program more than a year ago but it remains classified.
At the "black sites", prisoners were sometimes subjected to harsh interrogation techniques even when analysts were sure they had no more information to give, said the report, which the Post said was based on interviews with current and former U.S. officials.
The files reviewed by committee investigators describe previously undisclosed cases of abuse, including the alleged repeated dunking of a terrorism suspect in tanks of ice water at a detention site in Afghanistan. The method bore similarities to waterboarding but never appeared on any Justice Department-approved list of techniques, the Washington Post said.
Officials also said that millions of records show that the CIA's ability to obtain the most valuable intelligence information, including tips that led to the locating and killing of Osama bin Laden in 2011, had little, if anything, to do with "enhanced interrogation techniques", the newspaper said.
A spokesman for the CIA said the agency had not yet seen a final version of the report and was not able to comment, the Washington Post said.
Some current and former agency officials have privately described the study as marred by factual errors and misguided conclusions, the newspaper added.
In March, Senator Dianne Feinstein, who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee, accused the CIA of searching computers used by committee staffers compiling the report and she questioned whether the agency had broken the law in doing so.
(Reporting by Carey Gillam; Editing by Gareth Jones)

...................

Torture cares nothing for truth.

Torture shows only disdain of human beings. 

Torture cripples the torturer, his country, the people in whose name it is done.

No need to look further for cause of illness plaguing psyche and spirit of this land. 

Look, rather, for healing antidote.

If still possible.

Mu

Japan: Man Freed From Death Row Faces New Effort to Block a Retrial, By MARTIN FACKLER 
Prosecutors filed an appeal on Monday to block a court from granting a retrial to a former boxer convicted of murder whose release last week after 48 years on death row exposed problems in Japan’s justice system. Prosecutors in the central city of Shizuoka challenged the decision by a district court, which said the police might have fabricated some of the evidence used to convict the former boxer, Iwao Hakamada, now 78, of killing a family of four in 1966. While the appeal will not affect the court’s decision to release Mr. Hakamada, it is seen as a face-saving move by prosecutors to prevent further scrutiny of their reliance on forced confessions and possibly shoddy police work to obtain Mr. Hakamada’s conviction and possible others.(--NYTimes, 1Apr14, online)

Monday, March 31, 2014

see through me


At end of Sunday Evening Practice one of the practitioners leaned against kitchen sink and said that only when someone is completely intimate with suffering is there no longer suffering.

No looking at suffering; rather, looking through suffering. To see what is as what is seeing.
Questions such as: Why was I born? What is my life for? What will happen to me when I die? are based on the premise of a solid, permanent entity living in a body and moving through time from day to day and year to year. With this ‘self’ in mind we then inquire into its past, its future and its purpose. It is in relation to this premise of ‘self’ that many of us need guidance. It is imperative, if we want to understand Buddhism, to investigate this particular premise. 
When we investigate this concept of a solid self, our questions will alter from: Why was I born? etc, to: What is the ‘I’? What is the foundation of this idea of self? Is there an ‘I’ that has been born? Is there a ‘me’ that lives life? Is there a ‘me’ that will die? We begin to question right down to our very roots, as it were, with a mind that is fresh, open, and willing to look. We just want to know! 
The unborn does not come within the realm of time, so ‘forever’ is meaningless in relation to the unborn. 
(--from Karma and Rebirth A Buddhist Perspective by Diana St Ruth)
These days, contemporary culture seems overly interested in the undead.

I’m more interested in the unborn nature that precedes, pervades, and follows our born nature. 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

How does it feel?


Mazel Tov! 
It is Sunday. And raining. Early spring.
The word mazel literally means “a drip from above.” Mazel can have different connotations depending on its context, but they are all connected to this basic definition—something trickling down from above. 
The signs of the zodiac are called mazalot. Jewish tradition sees the constellations on high as directing the destiny of individuals and nations down below. Thus mazel is the influence dripping down from the stars. (Over the years, bad or good mazel came to mean luck more than destiny.) When the Talmud says that we are not subject to mazel, it means that we are not limited to our destiny; rather our own actions determine our fate. 
There is another meaning of the word mazel that is more relevant to the phrase Mazel TovMazel is the term used in Jewish mysticism to describe the root of the soul. The mystics say that only a ray of our soul actually inhabits our body. The main part of the soul, our mazel, remains above, shining down on us from a distance. Have you ever experienced a sense of spontaneous intuition, where out of the blue you suddenly feel at peace with yourself and the universe? Or a sudden flash of inspiration that makes you see life in a new light? 
Occasionally we may receive an extra flux of energy from our soul above. It can happen at any time, but is most common at a time of celebration—a birth, birthday, brit, bar/bat mitzvah or wedding. It is especially at these times of joy that we are able to see beyond the mundane and the petty and to sense the deeper truths of life. 
When we tell someone Mazel Tov, we are giving them a blessing: May this drip of inspiration from your soul above not dissipate, but rather have a positive and lasting effect, that from this event onwards you should live your life with higher consciousness. You should be aware of the blessings in your life and be ready to receive more and more.
(--from, What Does “Mazel Tov” mean? by Aron Moss)      http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/160965/jewish/What-Does-Mazel-Tov-Mean.htm
It feels right.

Something changes


Somewhere, in dawn-quiet, these words:

PRENEZ, ET MANGEZ-EN TOUS:
CECI EST MON CORPS
LIVRÉ POUR VOUS.
 
De même, à la fin du repas,
il prit dans ses mains
cette coupe incomparable;
et te rendant grâce à nouveau il la bénit,
et la donna à ses disciples, en disant:
 
PRENEZ, ET BUVEZ-EN TOUS,
CAR CECI EST LA COUPE DE MON SANG,
LE SANG DE L´ALLIANCE NOUVELLE ET ÉTERNELLE,
QUI SERA VERSÉ POUR VOUS ET POUR LA MULTITUDE
EN RÉMISSION DES PÉCHÉS.
VOUS FEREZ CELA, EN MÉMOIRE DE MOI
(--from Universalis app, French, 4th Sunday of Lent, Mass) 
What happens next is anyone's guess.

It is a turning point. Mere explanation or description gives way to something else.

Two possibilities emerge:
1. Presence, or
2. Absence

And both are the odd, uncanny, beyond our ken -- Unheimlich!

In writing to woman we visit in Augusta yesterday:
Presence is presence even in absence. So it is with God. So it is with everything. "Where ARE you?" We ask. And there is silence. 
That silence, like graph-plane, is ready, always and ad infinitum, for the next arrival and posit of x or y with their concomitant reflection. 
You arrive there, where you are, and point by point falls grounding referents to accompany you in the way line reaches toward its expression.
We arrive home with little understanding of where we've been, or where we are, or where we will be.

But, home.