A Wedding, A Crypt, and Airport Philosophy

So here I am, excited beyond words about my cousin’s wedding and lots of time to spend with kindred spirits around a campfire, beneath the stars, drinking coffee and talking philosophy and life. Then one flight is cancelled, I manage to make standby on another, but still arrive in Dallas too late to catch the connecting flight. Arrival in Nebraska is now delayed by 5 hours. Mainly, however, the entire atmosphere of this airport is soul-sucking. I feel trapped, barely able to breathe. Automated voices over the speakers, moving stairwells, faceless masses running late to nowhere, burdens in tow, efficiently channelled through sterile, numbered halls. Anything but complete compliance swiftly punished for the sake of national security (or something), crappy food at exorbitant prices because you’re trapped here, panic of trying to make flights, worry at cancellation, sore necks from trying to find moments of sleep. Bile is literally rising in my throat. Peace…peace….I must intentionally suppress an intense array of emotions–anger, hatred, sorrow, even panic.

Humans are certainly odd creatures. How completely we have managed to insulate ourselves from life. It borders on impressive, if not for the repulsiveness. Think about this: it is entirely feasible, without any significant effort, never to set foot on the earth. Houses, roads, stores… We call the bits of earth that we have haphazardly covered up “improved surfaces.” This, my friends, may be called a fine example of hubris. Also just ignorance.

My toes long to grow roots into the dirt and be covered in grass. Don’t we love to feel our feet in gooey mud?…at least while we’re still young and sane. Have you ever heard anyone long to feel the asphalt? Just saying…

♦ ♦ ♦

Joy!

Feet once more on land

eyes beholding at last the faces of loved ones

We are free!

And carefree!

Windows rolled down

breeze dancing with our hair

music flying high as our spirits

A vineyard

emerald hill with pond at its foot

long grass sunsets

cicada chorus

Food and friends and fire

…night falls

Ukulele and voices narrate the celebration

laughter rises with the campfire sparks

Fellowship in smoke of pipe and fire

Whiskey and wine

Stories dancing on summer night’s breeze

And eyes close,

one by one…

…good morning

Whispered in sleeper’s ear

by the birds’ chirp and warble

the song of bullfrogs and crickets

cool breeze

soft grey sky

welcoming

promising storm to wash the earth

dewy grass

cold feet

smoking coals with glimmer of life

One by one

awake

stretch like contented felines

refreshed

(for there is no better way to awaken

than by a campfire

under open skies)

still tired from happiness

Coals yield a breakfast

bacon and eggs

pancakes and berries

“time to leave”

the droplets from heaven say

We are ready for the day’s adventures

♦ ♦ ♦

Night falls

Tiptoe through monastery

Silents steps into earth

ancient crypt

A place of peace

fellowship of the living and dead

Candles illuminate eyes

Voices soar in chant and song

in room too long silent

♦ ♦ ♦

A day of preparation

anticipation

full of food and friendship

Return.

In church courtyard

a haven

red leaves framed against deep blue expanse

silver stars singing with us

Quiet words and wine

circle on cool stone

descend to crypt

layers

melody

harmony

rhythm

Voices blending with guitar strings

crescendo reaching the heavens

a communion among us

with the past

the future

all one

a lullaby

eyelids fall

souls at rest

♦ ♦ ♦

Morning calls

Arise!

Celebrate!

We run ‘round

crazy with excitement

For today is the day!

Revel in the moment

A blur of final preparations

And here we are

tree-branch arbor

bare feet one with the grass

smiles and tears

song and poetry

laughter of free spirits

as two become one

and we share wholeheartedly

8f16aaa1b0f4871494514f1c54416e9din their elation

Merry-making!

Food and champagne

Music and dance

There is no time but now

Pinnacle of human happiness

hazy blue dusk

deep blue night

dance with all your heart

one with the stars

we are here

Now joined to all time

grace and beauty abound

…now spent with happiness

let us find rest.

♦ ♦ ♦

Now the time of celebration is over, and I must return for a while to the rat race. My emotions are different than previously, as I trek through this airport. Before, partially due to the high stress preceding, frustration with the system was acutely felt. Now, I have rested and celebrated for days. I am deeply sad to be leaving, peacefully hopeful about the future, content to live. I just feel pity to see this, even a little apathetic. I hate it but won’t deign to waste thought on it.

Now what to do? I return for a while to the game of life, but my being cannot ignore: it is only a game. Having tasted of eternity, am I to return to the transitory? I long for community and joy, rest and creation, song and dance. Am I to merely enact the role ordained by society? Say my lines in turn, enact each duty at the prescribed time? No. I am newly aware of a loneliness in my soul, there all along and now unmasked. It is the sorrow of parting from the truest of companions, the desire to live in such a community always, and frustration with the obstacles that would tie me to this life apart from love. God give me hope and strength to see things set aright, love and peace to give to all around me.

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