Nothing has happened before.
“Centuries of centuries and only in the present do things happen.”
Nothing will happen after.
In prison Friday morning considering non-transactional presence.
Where each act is not about you not about me not about benefit or deprivation. Where there is a middle space, a space between, autonomous and auto-defining, repository of potential, possibility and probable promise if left to its own, treated with care and concern, allowed to unfold and express its coming-to-be along with its retrieval-of-ancestral-worth.
Right there, not me not you, not one not two, the whole of it prior to dissection division distortion.
What is whole
This by Joy Harjo:
For Calling The Spirit Back
From Wandering The Earth
In Its Human Feet
by Joy Harjo
Put down that bag of potato chips, that white bread, that
bottle of pop.
Turn off that cellphone, computer, and remote control.
Open the door, then close it behind you.
Take a breath offered by friendly winds. They travel
the earth gathering essences of plants to clean.
Give back with gratitude.
If you sing it will give your spirit lift to fly to the stars’ ears and
Acknowledge this earth who has cared for you since you were
a dream planting itself precisely within your parents’ desire.
Let your moccasin feet take you to the encampment of the
guardians who have known you before time,
who will be there after time.
They sit before the fire that has been there without time.
Let the earth stabilize your postcolonial insecure jitters.
Be respectful of the small insects, birds and animal people
who accompany you.
Ask their forgiveness for the harm we humans have brought
down upon them.
The heart knows the way though there may be high-rises,
interstates, checkpoints, armed soldiers, massacres, wars, and
those who will despise you because they despise themselves.
The journey might take you a few hours, a day, a year, a few
years, a hundred, a thousand or even more.
Watch your mind. Without training it might run away and
leave your heart for the immense human feast set by the
thieves of time.
Do not hold regrets.
When you find your way to the circle, to the fire kept burning
by the keepers of your soul, you will be welcomed.
You must clean yourself with cedar, sage, or other healing plant.
Cut the ties you have to failure and shame.
Let go the pain you are holding in your mind, your shoulders, your heart, all the way to your feet. Let go the pain of your ancestors to make way for those who are heading in our direction.
Ask for forgiveness.
Call upon the help of those who love you. These helpers take many forms: animal, element, bird, angel, saint, stone, or ancestor.
Call yourself back. You will find yourself caught in corners and creases of shame, judgment, and human abuse.
You must call in a way that your spirit will want to return.
Speak to it as you would to a beloved child.
Welcome your spirit back from its wandering. It will return
in pieces, in tatters. Gather them together. They will be
happy to be found after being lost for so long.
Your spirit will need to sleep awhile after it is bathed and
given clean clothes.
Now you can have a party. Invite everyone you know who
loves and supports you. Keep room for those who have no
place else to go.
Make a giveaway, and remember, keep the speeches short.
Then, you must do this: help the next
person find their way through the dark.
© Joy Harjo. Conflict Resolution From Holy Beings. W. W. Norton & Company, 2015.
James the Greater, back then. They say he was the first of the apostles to be killed, it was 44AD.
His memory is pilgrimage these days, Camino de Santiago.
Nineteen hundred years after his death, when circumstances brought my parents to the moment of birthing the possibilities inherent in a new life, I arrived, unknowing and an empty space in the world.
History hides so much.
Beheading someone because they say what they've seen and heard was then, and is now, horrendous.
Where does one go when the mighty challenge the low?
Where does one go to sound the truth, to face the facts, to change one's life?
Look to one another.
See in one no-other.
No need to murder a different experience of reality.
Listen to it.
Let what is being told be told -- without fear or the impulse to erase what is before you.
What has changed?
Still, where I thought I was --
* just unknowing and an empty space in the world.