Saturday, October 3, 2020

Meditation 95

3 October 2020

They look at me askance: the neighbor, the guy at the cemetery; mothers with their masked kids at the play area. A Slovenian poet began from one short word, like here, then moved on to elephants. To play this game, you need a neutral word, one to which you can easily wish happiness. “They have always looked askance at the notion of western democracy,” reads the free dictionary. I know “a” precedes “skance,” but I want to hone in on the “ask.” What is your ask? We’re antsy to find out, like the detective show that’s more about process than product. Show me your watch, then tell me how it works; neither glance has much to do with the time. Timelines are twigs off the old family tree. I saw branches in a parking lot this morning; at the ends that had broken off, the wood’s face shone yellow. Behind its brow, a coil of lichen, half-detached, lightly touching asphalt. It would be his own ass’s fault if he died. The question of love comes up on social media. From our small squares we debate schadenfreude or forgiveness, glee or grace, as if we could pull them apart like splinters. The word “concerning” blossoms in our prose, having less to do with compassion than with worry. His vital signs do not concern us; they are concerning. Concern begins with a con, though it needn’t end there. I say the bodhissatva pushed one man overboard to save the rest, but my friends prove extremist. Love or bust, so bust it probably is. Clearly, Hope got her job on the strength of that bust. Time's expanded to fill space; we live on a giant soap bubble, roaring across a wide plain of water. Our bubble has nothing to do with cleanliness, but with a rainbow that stretches across its frail body, the flare of a palm frond in the sun, an amber alert.

No comments: