It's best to get on with it. I'd like to to be swallowed whole, as on Monday, happily underwater, creating, invisible to ships and other distractions. But I can't wait for the next dive, so I'll slog through the snow on the long walk home along the river, as I did tonight, gloveless, cold and immensely happy, in spite of myself.
Truth...is not subject to aging. - Dhammapada
The Dhammapada says to cultivate the company of wise people. Where do we find such persons? It is unusual to hear them shouting from mountaintops. Often they are are stutterers, like Moses.
Prepare for the wise.
Keep the sidewalk clear
of snow, ice.
Set slippers by the door,
for more often than not,
they will appear
andra moi ennepe, Mousa, polutropon, hos mala polla Planchthé epeiTroiés hieron ptoliethron epersen; pollón d'anthrópón iden astea kai no-on egnó, polla d'ho g'en pontó pathen algea hon kata thumon, arnumenoshén te psuchén kai noston hetairón.
andra moi | ennepe, | Mousa, pol | utropon, | hos mala | polla Planchthé ep | eiTroi | és hier | on ptoli | ethron e | persen; pollón | d'anthró |pón iden | astea | kai no-on | egnó, polla d'ho | g'en pon | tó pathen | algea | hon kata | thumon, arnume |noshén | te psu | chén kai | noston he | tairón.
Sing (ennepe) to me (moi) O Muse (Mousa) of the man (andra) of many turns (polutropon), who suffered (planchthe) many (polla) evils (mala) after (epei) he sacked (epersen) the holy (hieron) citadel (ptoliethron) of Troy. He saw (iden) the cities (astea) of many (polon) men (anthropon) and learnt (egno) their minds (noon); in (kata) his (hon) heart (thumon) he underwent (pathen) many (polla) pains (algea) on the sea (en ponto), striving to preserve (arnumenos) not only (te) his soul (psuchen) but also (kai) his comrades' (hetairon) homecoming (noston).
Stefan-Boltzmann law, statement that the total radiant heat energy emitted from a surface is proportional to the fourth power of its absolute temperature. ... The law applies only to blackbodies, theoretical surfaces that absorb all incident heat radiation - https://www.britannica.com/science/Stefan-Boltzmann-law One is one's own guardian. What other guardian could one have? with oneself well disciplined, one obtains a rare guardian indeed. - Dhammapada 12.160
"Trying to break out of the Tempter's control, the mind writhes to and fro, like a fish pulled from its watery home and onto dry ground" Dhammapada. 3.34
Plane overhead , dark dry morning
18 degrees, moon waning crescent
hum of mouse
Sometimes at night, I wake up terrified of losing everything - my house, my studio, my ability to be happy, my need to draw and paint and write and look. I feel as if all the decisions I've ever had to make have brought me to a place of ruin and despair.
Then I get up and walk through the studio into the kitchen and drink a glass of water. I stand at the sink in the dark, looking out over an empty parking lot and the alley. It's very quiet for the middle of the city because it's the middle of the night. I hear a gull screech, sleepless like me.
Something in the water washes down the dread. Something in the dark lifts the lid on gloom and then, there in the room with me and the echo of the gull's call, I fall into hope again.
This last year I've had a lot of moments like this.
I've pushed myself harder, demanded change. I've acted on intuition and defied cautionary relatives and well-meaning friends.
I've quite literally walked alone at night, in miraculous foreign places where I could do so. I have found the possible at the edges of fear, my own and others.
And yet, in the comfort of my bed, snug and safe, I wake again and again roused by doom. The more I push myself to do during the day, the more I'm pulled by panic at night.
It's the seesaw I called 2018. And it's followed me into the new year.
Let me be clear here. I would rather this than a sound sleep but retreat from challenge.
I'll take this price for living awake over anything any day, or night. So on into the new year, pig squealing scared and boar bounding brave.
I've left out a water glass by the sink. I'm ready.