October 26-A, 2022

Old Baldy 05/04/2008 Oil Paint Rendered — Bald Head Island, North Carolina
Everybody has their own story/stories,
their own way of looking at things,
thinking about things...

It's a wonder.
I cherish a restaurant filled with people
living their own life,
more or less.
And a movie theater,
a football stadium,
a continent,
a planet...

I want to listen to each of them
as they say what's what,
what matters,
what happened to them,
and what they did in response,
and how that impacted their life,
and what their hopes are,
and their wishes were,
what broke their hearts,
what made them smile...

I want to know them all,
and encourage them along their way.

I love the oral histories
that are recorded of the elders
in each generation,
talking about their lives.

John Neihardt's book,
"Black Elk Speaks"
is a record of conversations
with a Oglala Lakota Sioux shaman,
or, medicine man,
that I can only read in short segments,
reflecting, as it does, the pathos
of Native Americans at their trail's end.

Carl Jung said, "All of our problems
are the result of being unable
to tell our stories."

Articulation is clarification,
is confrontation--
all three of which are required
for reconciliation.

Until we are reconciled to ourselves
and our own life experience,
we live out the pathos of our own trail,
without being aware of what is going on.

And that is the saddest end of all.

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

5 thoughts on “October 26-A, 2022

  1. “I call it cruel and perhaps the root of all cruelty
    To know what occurs but not recognize the fact. ..” William Stafford, A Ritual to Read to Each Other

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Anyone who is not tortured by their past is asleep at the wheel. Tortured by our past is knowing what we have done and have failed to do, and taking it seriously enough to be tortured, but not seriously enough to refuse to laugh and enjoy what is to be enjoyed, celebrate what is to be celebrated, and rejoice in the wonder of mistakes yet to be made–and to share what can be shared with those who know what we know, and share a wink across the room. Life would indeed be sparse without the winks across the room.

    Liked by 1 person

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