Do Palm Trees Wonder Too?
"Yes, these are the things, these kite strings and olive oil cans and Valentine hearts stuffed with nougat, that form the bond between the autistic vision and the experiential world, it is to show these things in their true mysterious light that is the purpose of the moon.”
After taking a hiatus of a couple of weeks, time spent getting my mother's house in order, my blog readership has fallen almost to nil. When I opened it a couple of nights ago to check, it was exactly nil. It was disheartening as I had put a lot of time and effort to get it to where it was. Now, I have to start back at square one.
Strangely enough, the low feeling did not last long. These last few weeks have given me a sense of accomplishment that I haven't felt in a long, long time. I've been too busy pulling carpet, loading dumpsters, and painting to feel sorry for myself.
Instead of the constant whisper of incrimination, sorrow and shame a new mental dialogue is starting to assert itself and sounds something like this:
Me: My wife left me and died.
Voice: And a very bad thing it was, but are you going to sit on
your ass whining about it the rest of your life? There's
things to be done. Your family needs you now more
Me: My dad died in the shower. I took his pulse as he lay
naked on the bathroom floor.
Voice: Was he a good man?
Me: A very good man.
Voice: Then glad you had him in the first place. A lot of us
never had a father.
Me: You never had a Dad?
Voice: I am a disembodied voice, you bleeding idiot. Get off
your ass and do something.
I'll admit this new voice is somewhat querulous and brusque. It is, however, fortifying and is exactly what I need to hear after the last several years of nothing but " Poor, Poor, baby! You should be feeling bad, after what you went through and all."
I came home the other day, drenched in sweat, tired beyond belief, bones aching all over, and covered it blotches of white paint with just a tint of yellow. I peeled off my outer clothing and jumped into the pool. I cooled down for a while and dragged myself out, covered my self with a large towel, and sat down in a deck chair.
It was a very hot day, but the wind suddenly picked up. It blew a very pleasant warm breeze across my body. It felt as if the universe was reaching out to acknowledge that I was doing something good for a change. I cried, and it felt good.
In the last 13 years I have developed the inability to be still, and after I was afflicted with tinnitus a few years ago it became even worse. Where I used to love the mountains, the lakes, the streams, and the ocean, I could no longer stay still long enough to enjoy their ability to calm the soul. This time, I sat outside and enjoyed the summer breeze for several minutes.
I began to wonder. I have been fixated on the problems of numbers. I started to do some math in my head. In my thinking, the number one signifies the wholeness of all things. The number two, on the other hand, represents something that exists distinctly separate from the whole and yet is part of the whole which certainly seems to be an impossibility.
The existence of this separate entity automatically creates the number three which would be the interface between the whole thing and the separateness. I was working out what the numbers would be if I added another separate entity, and another, and another. How many interfaces would it create? Would all of them be joined in common interface with the one, or would each have their own separate portal? Would they each share a separate interface with each other?
I know that this sounds weird and complicated, but it somehow soothed me as I understood that it is all somehow related to the existence of all things, and how we as distinct creatures interact with each other.
I was watching a couple of palm trees in the distance sway back and forth in the breeze and started to look on their strange dance as being consciously motivated as if each palm tree was a separate individual acting out its creative urges for my edification. It made me wonder; do palm trees wonder too?
I don't mean do they sit and try to solve riddles and shit, or try to work out weird math questions, but do they anticipate and feel like something is happening. Right before human life appeared on this planet, did nature increasingly hum with anticipation?
Anybody who has ever listened for the sounds of reindeer on Christmas Eve, or stepped outside on that night and blew smoky breaths as the moon hung silent, knowing, and mysterious behind a cloud would know somewhat what I am talking about.
The Ancient Greeks had this word Chthonic (pronounced thon-ic). It references things below the surface, things that inhabit the underworld. They had Chthonic deities which brought forth the power beneath the surface of things but were always limited somewhat by their attachment to the ground or their locale.
The holy tree Yggdrasil in Norse mythology embodies the same idea. The tree has deep roots in the underworld but emerges from the ground reaching toward the sky.
This is man's position in the universe. We have deep roots and we are to build ourselves a strong material body with which we reach for the stars.
In the story of Oedipus, this idea was represented by the wound to the main character's feet. The word Oedipus actually means "swollen foot". He was child of a king and queen who was cast aside as his father tried to avoid his ordained fate. In his rootlessness, Oedipus inadvertently carries out the grim orders of human destiny and slays his father and has children with his mother.
At the end, after being confronted by his actions, Oedipus pokes out his eyes, turns his vision inward and eventually gains true wisdom and becomes something of a saint.
It suddenly seems that we are now being surrounded by a bunch of people without roots who can never gather the minerals, strength and sustenance from the ground below. They claim to be woke, but woke only seems to mean that they can't ever close their eyes, or see the mysteries at work behind the scenes.
They only look in magic mirrors that reflect images of them with their weird hairstyles, tattoo covered flesh, wearing summer dresses and knee pants while licking on giant rainbow colored lollypops. The only thing the mirror reflects that is truthful is the rodent like nature of their always opened eyes.
They never reach for the sky but are content on building crumbling structures without meaning which will later be used to, not so successfully, hide all the bodies.
This detachment from the world below makes them truly dangerous.
It is no time to lie around feeling sorry for the past.