A green Corvair and two six packs…..

Tired phrases trudge past my inner eye, row after row of regimented words in straight lines, stepping in time. As each row passes, it turns away, as if in shame, never falling out of step, never breaking free from the pattern. I search each row, looking for the words to grab attention, words of power, and grace, words to inspire, to bring laughter and joy…. though I search in vain, hope remains, quiet and reserved, but nonetheless strong, hope that this new day will bring something good….. or at least something less bad….

For anyone who has never experienced clinical depression, it is hard to understand how one’s feelings can turn into an enemy. It is hard to explain, too, even for those of us who experience such feelings on a regular basis. The exact process is subjective in nature, which means that much of what is felt cannot be explained in terms that mean anything to someone else; each of us is unique in this respect. Our feelings are our own, and though everyone has similar feelings, they can never be exactly the same. This makes the process of understanding what someone else goes through difficult to pin down, since all of us have our own set of preferences and prejudices. What stimulates one person to rage is seen as humorous to another; what makes one person feel good may cause another to feel real emotional pain.

Thus, the fight against depression becomes very solitary, at least in this respect. We cannot KNOW what another feels, or why those particular feelings cause such distress. In this we are each alone, and must come to our own resolution. But, each of us, while ultimately alone in our battle, can feel supported, and even loved, as long as we allow ourselves to let other folks in. One doesn’t have to have the answer in order to help, one just needs to be empathetic and compassionate.

Dogs and cats know this; when we feel down, our pets will often come sit by us, not interfering, but just being there, a comforting presence. They can supply no words to soother our pain, but just by being there, and showing their love, they are showing how each of us can help each other in times of stress…..

I’ve been fighting my depression, and pain, for several days now, with only moderate success. It’s kind of a vicious cycle, hard to break free, that starts with increased pain in my lower back and hips. As the pain rises, my mood sinks, and I get cranky. When I’m cranky, I tend to isolate myself, as I don’t want to alienate anyone by biting them, figuratively, or literally, so I keep to myself.

Being a social creature, this further annoys me, as I begin to think about why I am so alone (thanks to my ex-boss’s bureaucratic blitzkrieg, I was forced to leave work, never had a chance to contact any of my friends from work… and in the process lost all contact with them….). This becomes a downward spiral, emotionally, and I get increasingly withdrawn, which makes it harder to want to be with other people….

Eventually, I hit bottom, and begin the long climb back up to normalcy, or as close to that as I ever get…. and one of the things that helps me climb is the process of creating these Daily Pearls of Virtual Wisdom. Just being immersed in profound thoughts and words of wisdom from history’s wisest thinkers has a beneficial effect on me; reading of any kind is good therapy to my spirit. Writing helps too, even if what I write isn’t connected to what I’m experiencing, as it is today; just the process of discussing a Pearl is cathartic for me….

So, that all being said, in such a long-winded fashion, I think it’s time to Pearl…. Shall we?….. I know it will make me feel better, and I hope it does the same for you…. let’s go!…..

“Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.” — Alan Watts

And Death Shall Have No Dominion

And death shall have no dominion.
Dead man naked they shall be one
With the man in the wind and the west moon;
When their bones are picked clean and the clean bones gone,
They shall have stars at elbow and foot;
Though they go mad they shall be sane,
Though they sink through the sea they shall rise again;
Though lovers be lost love shall not;
And death shall have no dominion.

And death shall have no dominion.
Under the windings of the sea
They lying long shall not die windily;
Twisting on racks when sinews give way,
Strapped to a wheel, yet they shall not break;
Faith in their hands shall snap in two,
And the unicorn evils run them through;
Split all ends up they shan’t crack;
And death shall have no dominion.

And death shall have no dominion.
No more may gulls cry at their ears
Or waves break loud on the seashores;
Where blew a flower may a flower no more
Lift its head to the blows of the rain;
Though they be mad and dead as nails,
Heads of the characters hammer through daisies;
Break in the sun till the sun breaks down,
And death shall have no dominion.

Dylan Thomas

Given the state of my state, I needed something strong like this…. one may or may not agree with what D.T. is saying here, but it cannot be disputed that he says it strongly…. enjoy!

INTRODUCTION, n.  A social ceremony invented by the devil for the gratification of his servants and the plaguing of his enemies.  The introduction attains its most malevolent development in this century, being, indeed, closely related to our political system.  Every American being the equal of every other American, it follows that everybody has the right to know everybody else, which implies the right to introduce without request or permission.  The Declaration of Independence should have read thus:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident:  that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, and the right to make that of another miserable by thrusting upon him an incalculable quantity of acquaintances; liberty, particularly the liberty to introduce persons to one another without first ascertaining if they are not already acquainted as enemies; and the pursuit of another’s happiness with a running pack of strangers.” — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

In the last 11 months of posting every day, the concept of the introduction has been one of close interest to me, since I am compelled by the nature of the beast to come up with one every day. Now, at at last, I have a bit more understanding of why the process gives me such a hard time…. or, at the least, why Ambrose thinks it  does…..

I know, I know, he’s talking about a different type of introduction altogether…. but this is English, and I can make whatever specious, tentative connections of meaning I want, as long as it’s not misspelled. Besides, having to read my introductory paragraphs may just be as unpleasant an experience as having to meet someone you never wished to meet, but had to in order to remain friends with someone….. Of course, there is no such constriction here, so maybe it’s all an illusion, and this is a huge waste of time and energy….. ya think?

Nah…. we’re not going there…. there IS a purpose to this. I just lost track of what it was, and have been merrily typing away for about two and a half paragraphs now, trying to see if the idea I had would settle back into my consciousness. But, I note that Murphy has not yet made an appearance today, so this must be his opening salvo, and I can blame him for taking my idea and hiding it where the sun don’t shine…. which guarantees that I’m not going to go looking for it.

And neither are you, so just forget it…. we’ll go on to the next pearl, and leave this one where it can do no more harm…. in the past…..

“Make no mistake: the weeds will win.  Nature bats last.” — Robert Pyle

I love it when I find one like this. Ten words. Infinite wisdom….. For some reason, which is quite clear to many of us on the other end of the spectrum of human experience, a large portion of folks cannot understand this idea, or do not try to understand it. The latter part of that statement is probably the more accurate; most people just don’t think at all.

But, regardless of why they do not comprehend it, the fact remains that homo sapiens is a part of Nature, not separate from it;  everything that happens to Nature happens to us, and vice versa. Our species has a niche on the evolutionary scale of life, a niche that overlaps with those of a great number of other species. We all use the same physical resources, consume the same foods, breathe the same air, and inhabit the same space…..

However, our species, as noted above, is fragmented in terms of how we view the ecosphere. An unfortunately large number of people view the rest of the planet as their own property, to do with as they please. They do not take into account the other life forms that are present on that planet; they also refuse to acknowledge the finite limits to the  physical resources they are planning to plunder, consuming them at a rate guaranteed to use them all up within a very few more years.

In the process of consuming these physical resources, our species is also making changes to the environment, by the pumping of solid waste gases into the atmosphere, causing the ambient temperature of the planet to rise. With this rise in temperature, we are now experiencing the beginning of major climate changes that will increase exponentially over time, and will raise the water level on the planet by melting the polar ice caps, until much of the current land will be covered in sea water.

These observations are not speculation. The beginning effects are already being observed, and are simply more proof of the accuracy of the speculations. The tipping point may have already been reached, and there may not be anything we can do now to reverse the process. So, what we will see in the next 100 years is the opening battle of the real war for survival, a war which we have caused ourselves, by insisting on carrying out policies that are ultimately self-destructive. To use the analogy correctly, it is now Nature’s turn at bat. And Nature always wins….. Even if, or rather, when we lose, Nature will still be on the field…..

I never know what will happen when I am in this state of mind. Sometimes it comes out well, other times not so much…. and because I’m in this state, I’m no judge of which it may be…. Ah, well, c’est la vie…. It’s all good, as my son is wont to say…. we don’t always see it, but it’s always all good….. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.





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