Saturday, November 19, 2011

To Write and Remember

In the words of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, "I imposed it on myself like a vow made in war: I would write it or die. Or as Rilke had said: 'if you think you are capable of living without writing, do not write.'" I have tried to carry on without words; I have tried to put it to bed so to speak, because of its weight - but there are too many moments - the ones that keep you up at night in the blackness of the room, the kind that shock you at the sound of your own voice, the ones that keep - the good | the bad | the ugly. There are too many compressed moments in a span of human life that demand to be documented, creeping out of our imaginations and dancing with human experience. It's an aroma I cannot get away from. It's an urgency I cannot put to rest. Just as the Creator spoke the world into being... with words... so I must do my part, tying together the story of ancient past and weaving it intricately into the stories of this life. 

God utters me like a word containing a partial thought of himself. A word will never be able to comprehend the voice that utters it. But if I am true to the concept God utters in me, if I am true to the thought in him I was meant to embody, I shall be full of his actuality and find in him everywhere in myself, and find myself nowhere. I shall be lost in him. - Thomas Merton


It comes to us
like a forgotten name
of a town by some river;
it leaks out of our mouths 
and our ears, 
our sleep-walking bare
feet against the tile

so dreadful
and alone that it
paralyzes fear in the night
or so beautiful 
and knowing
that I am tempted to worship it

Withered stories like fossils, 
connecting patterns from ancient past
in the palms of our hands.

We collect
and remember, 
as true as we can, 
waking life:
the words He has 
and scattered.

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"Pleasant words are [like] honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones." Proverbs 16:24