Saturday, October 6, 2007

Ach Du Lieber Augustine

Good thoughts can show up in the damnedest places. I found this one in an ad for a church on the downtown #2 subway to Brooklyn. It's from St. Augustine:
"People travel to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars; and they pass by themselves without wondering."
I've seen a few entries in other journals criticizing them harshly, and even was told (by a close friend, no less) that my own is "a desperate cry for help." These bothered me a bit - ok, more than a bit - and then St. Augustine came along and the whole thing got put into perspective. I don't know about you, but I don't care much about the height of mountains and have never been a beach person. You can't see the stars here a lot of the time, and if the river you've lived with your whole life were the Hudson you wouldn't be any more enamored of its size (or chemical content) than I am. What we do in these journals - really, what anyone who writes from their insides does - is refuse to pass by ourselves without wondering.
So here's to us, the people who give ourselves over to that creative urge just because it's ours, with or without permission. To sculpting thoughts and feelings into words, infusing them with rhythm and making them breath, and approaching it no differently whether we're being read by 12 or by 12,000 because we know no other way. To understanding the minor miracle of getting pixels on a glass screen, or bits of ink on a piece of paper, to induce a reaction in another person's mind, or heart.
This applies to more than writing, of course, but if I'm going to be self-serving why not go all the way?
In an unrelated news item, I see that Newt Gingrich has said he will not be running for president in 2008. What I really want to know is this: who's the twit who asked him that in the first place?
In another unrelated item, to the collection of "frequent buyer" cards I carry (for the supermarket, pharmacy, and office supply store) recently got added one for Lindt Chocolate shops. What have I become?
Third unrelated item (I promise to stop after this): yesterday the Yankees lost a playoff game due in part to an enormous swarm of gnats that descended onto their pitcher late in the game while they were holding onto a slim lead. I love my team, but when that happens it's hard not to think that mighty Umpire in the sky clearly does not want you to win. Our best chance in tomorrow's must-win game will be to get good starting pitching, mark the locker-room door the night before with lamb's blood, and hope there are no first-borns in the starting line-up.


rdautumnsage said...

And there you have it in a nutshell....How can anyone understand the world if they don't at the very least attempt to understand their own personal inner being. I take that journey inward quite a bit. In the end I truly believe I'm better for having done so. I wish I had, had the perception to have done so earlier in my life. I would of saved myself a lot of pain and heartache. I don't know how many times I've written something about that journey and had someone email me to say Thank you. Somehow in my own search for peace I managed to find the words to express what someone elses spirit strived to understand. So it's not entirely a gift to ourselves, rather a gift to all who read us.

Your journal among numerous others helps me with my inner search for peace to just be. The diversity among the journals gives us a peek into the human experience we might otherwise miss out on otherwise. My definition for these journals is, humanity exposed through the eyes of many. Thank you for being one of those friends who constantly helps me enjoy and find peace within myself. (Hugs) Indigo

oldhousegal said...

The "friend" who told you that your blog is "a desperate cry for help" needs to remove the rather large broomstick protruding from their, well, you know know where.  Getting comfortable with the idea that, no matter what I do, someone will disapprove has been one of the major tasks set out for me in my life it seems, so I can understand your dismay at the comment.  But really, isn't one of the joys of becoming "mature" (notice the careful choice of word) the ability to finally say (and feel) that somebody else's opinion is just that -- their opinion.  No more, no less, and definitely no reflection on you.  I think a rant on people who feel entitled to criticize the blogs of others is in order!

demandnlilchit said...

I personally write for my own sanity, it gives me peace of mind and if I happen to write something that connects to someone reading my blog or I connect to another bloggers entry.... then those are two paths that were meant to cross. Everybody has something they can still learn from someone else....sometimes your the teacher, sometimes your the student.


amy122389 said...

I write 'cause talking to myself is frowned upon a little.  

("Kids, me and mommy are going to see the doctor so the nice doctor can increase mommy's meds, mmkay?")

I say Kurt Russell should run for president.  If I'm gonna have to see a man in the news all the time, he should at least be hot looking.  Just my personal opinion, though.  ;-P


oldhousegal said...

Kurt Russell for president -- very interesting concept, although for the ultimate in hotness, I'd go for Alec Baldwin, even if he does have anger management issues.  Or better yet, the new Bond, Daniel Craig.  Now there's a face I wouldn't mind seeing in a news conference every day!