Saturday, October 02, 2004

Now, Back to Our Regularly-Scheduled Happy Planet

"Many's the time I've been mistaken
And many times confused.
Yes, and often felt forsaken
And certainly misused.
But I'm all right, I'm all right.
I'm just weary to my bones.
Still, you don't expect to be
Bright and bon vivant
So far away from home, so far away from home.

And I don't know a soul who's not been battered.
I don't have a friend who feels at ease.
I don't know a dream that's not been shattered
or driven to its knees.
But it's all right, it's all right.
For we've lived so well so long.
Still, when I think of the road
we're traveling on
I wonder what's gone wrong.
I can't help it, I wonder what's gone wrong."
Paul Simon - American Tune
Ah, the enlightened life's overlook upon human existence ... Not exactly like a cuppa hot Ovaltine and milk before bed, is it? Consciousness is everything, the reason for living, say the sages, so it becomes important to stay awake (literally and figuratively), and sort out what's important from all that is less so. Genocide in African nations. US and other governments imperialistic boots and multinational corporate boots stomping on the faces of innocents all over the globe. The atmosphere, the air we breathe shredding and toxic.

And it's just politics. It's just business. It's just the way it is. I hoped for more once upon a time. But I'm just a Sim, however enlightened I might fancy myself, confronting my impotence daily. And trying to keep my nose and my mind above water.

And then Friday night my two grown children found out that their dad, my former husband (we've been divorced for 15 years) has lung cancer. His name is Rex. He's a good soul. We were married for sixteen years when we were just barely adults. My kids love their dad a lot. Through my tears last night I asked myself and my husband lying next to me in bed: "How do I comfort my children?" He said: "I'm not sure you can."

This all seems a bit much sometimes ... this paying attention to our daily lives while paying attention to the living world movie scrolling by on the screen. Sorting it out. Sorting it out. My eyes leak unbidden, but as we do in my family, I "put my head down" and move my feet, make the coffee, turn on the computer ... and think about what I'm supposed to do next.

Enlightenment. Not exactly a cuppa hot Ovaltine and milk before bed.