(Him, Her, Them)

Virginia creeper

Crawling slowly across dry sand. Reaching… Longing… Striving… Never quite touching…


When it feels to go, I follow.

When it says I must push forward, I pick up my ass, stuff it in my hip pocket, and shoulder on. When it commands a stop, I do so…

…falling foursquare on my face, toppled from the rear by the troop of my roles.

(When it says wait, play 52-Pickup with your mind.)

“So be it!” say we, “if thus it is willed.”

(Although believing is another thing.)

…and it is gone, down another way and back. And always back. And when it stops…

 (Do you hear the insects devour the plants? The gentle chomp, the bitter grasp and tear? The inability to chew? The overwhelming capacity to swallow?)

…then you are a zero with ninety seven thousand decimals fore and aft. You know that when you move, when you reach out and leap into that raw wind…

                                                             Examine a word: DAMAGE. A kindly, somewhat bumbling image of an object big and round and full going this way and that, causing those things which chance to meet it at those points on its bulk less obscure than unnoticed to give, to bend out of shape, and then to groan and break, crumbling into themselves. Something whole and earthly drifts hither and yon, not all of its own behest, causing this to shatter and that to that to snap, a natural consequence of all things out of phase, out of order, out of kilter, out of whack, out of step. Yet Sorry.

                     (Do you hear it? Do you?)

                                                   …you will damage. Our curse (not mine, not mine alone) is to damage. Neither to create nor to contribute to disaster—that power is of higher order—but simply, without grandeur, I damage.

  (Erosion is the habitat of the insect.)


Creating nothing, destroying nothing but perfection,

Wherever we travel, whatever the cause,

Whatever the context or intent,

Whatever the stakes, the losses or gain,

Whether we are conscious, or ourselves…

                                                                      …thus when it calls. And when, having called my troop to attention, softening up the hard determined and salving the hidden fear fear feels, we are safe to move again.

          Safe because no inroad into the soul can ever damage another.