Hold It All

Category: Our Heroic and Ceaseless 24/7 Struggle against Tsuris

I Was Sitting Outside at 6 North Coffee

I bought tea for my friends
Shams and Rumi
Another intoxicatingly sunny day
70 degrees
They were cutting up the way they always do
But they could see in my eyes a request to quit horsing around.

“Friend Mark,” Rumi began, “Tell us what is on your mind….”

I knew how to ring their bell. Read the rest of this entry »

Advertisements

Bella Levenshteyn Gives Me an Opportunity to Practice

“I’ll be filling two backpacks, and then I’m headed to Warsaw”
My heart sinks

Three deep breaths in and out
My heart expands

“So Don’t Flip”*

When it comes to righteous indignation
She makes Arundhati Roy seem timid

At a public reading of The Book of Mev
I made sure she read last reading aloud the last chapter

To mark the occasion of her medical school graduation
I gave her the original of Dear Layla Welcome to Palestine

If I see her once a year for a few hours
I consider it a very good year

For the last year she’s been working
One hundred-hour weeks

The Stoics advised long ago
Know what you can and can’t control

I can buy three sheets of Harvey Milk stamps
Send her reminders of her sri and satyagraha

 

*Jack Kerouac, to Allen Ginsberg

Today is Saturday

Once bought a pair of shorts online
Received Cabela’s email this morning

Subject Line reads:
“This Week’s Guns and Ammo”

Then “Save up to $50”
“Intuitive, ergonomic handling”

“Compact and lightweight
For easy all-day carry”

“Unfailing performance for your .223”
“Check it out”

“Neoprene Floating Gun Case…
Protect your weapon in any weather”

“Load up”
“Get the best”

Today is Saturday
February 24th, 2018

Notice What You Notice

Laura Bronstein came over to my home
To drop something off from Henry

(He wasn’t able to get out much anymore
And he was gradually accepting help)

Laura noticed one of my shelves in particular
“So, you are into Simone Weil?”

“Yes, lately I’ve been working my way
Through Pétrement’s bio in French”

Laura said in her unshakeable tone
“I identify more and more with her”

Our eyes locked for several seconds
Before she turned to leave

And the thought occurred to me:
She’s the Categorical Imperative in corduroys


–work-in-progress, Our Heroic and Ceaseless 24/7 Struggle against Tsuris

Aiming for the Supreme Goal in Life

Dear Perry

I am sending out the following to a few of my friends, Bengali-Americans, who haven’t heard of Sri Anandamayi Ma. I think they’ll be open to her.

I’m grateful we read her before I went to law school.

Namaste forever,

Tanya

 

It was reported that various Indian philosophers and scholars said to the Bengali mystic Sri Anandamayi Ma: “We have studied dry scriptures. But, we now see before us, a living embodiment of all that is contained in our holy books of wisdom.”

Sri Anandamayi Ma passed from this life in 1982. Even though we no longer have the opportunity of darshan of her “living embodiment,” we still can learn something from Joseph Fitzgerald’s The Essential Sri Anandamayi Ma: Life and Teachings of a 20th Century Indian Saint.  Given the pace of our lives, the intense pressures to achieve success, and our nagging sense of being frequently adrift, an acquaintance with Ma is a step toward sanity.

____________________

First, we can ponder reflections from Ma’s biographer, Alexander Lipski, like the following…

I felt as though I was mentally stripped naked. It seemed to me that she could see into the innermost recesses of my mind. I asked her to tell me what the chief obstacles on my spiritual path were. In response she revealed to me some glaring shortcomings of which I had been hitherto totally unaware. What She said was in no way flattering, in fact, painful, but Anandamayi Ma said it so compassionately, although firmly, that I did not feel condemned. I realized what true loving detachment was. Read the rest of this entry »

Should This Be Added to Gene Sharp’s List of 198 Nonviolent Actions?

Today Spielberg’s The Post opens
It’s true! — a film about the Pentagon Papers
I texted Max if he’d like to go and he responded in a couple of minutes:

“I took a quick look at the Post‘s website
Talk about sepia tones
It’s no surprise

But I don’t know if I could stomach it
Well, maybe going and vomiting
Would be the appropriate direct action”


–from novel-in-progress, Our Heroic and Ceaseless 24/7 Struggle against Tsuris

Waiting in Line To Order an Espresso

I overheard Sylvie Smith ask Emma Wong
“What’s up, haven’t seen you on Snapchat?”

“Yeah, I haven’t looked at  Snapchat
In three weeks”

Sylvie looked horrified
“THREE WEEKS?!!!

What’s going on with you?”
“Just into other things”

“You’re dating someone?”
“No, I’m reading someone” Read the rest of this entry »

He’s a Work-in-Progress

Perry

You said I could share anything with you.

Here’s my attempt with Metta.

Joel

 

May Albert Schlie be full of Metta.
May he be well.
May he know Joy.
That hypocritical fuck.

–from work-in-progress, Our Heroic and Ceaseless 24/7 Struggle against Tsuris

The Audacity of Impunity

Dear Carla and Perry
Some thoughts for you
Cal

A few weeks before in took office
Barack Obama said
No one is above the law.

But once he was in office
Bush and Company
Were above the law

What the Oval Office means is
Whoever occupies it
Is above the law

Maybe the Ferguson youth
Realized the irony of going to DC
To share their experiences with President Obama

Darren Wilson got away with it
He was above the law
Like the nation’s Chief Assassin himself