December 23-A, 2022

Australian Black Swan 08/24/2019 Oil Paint Rendered — Swan Lake Iris Gardens, Sumter, South Carolina
In "The Jersey Boys," Frankie Valli said, 
“They ask ya ‘what was the high point?
The hall of fame, 
sellin’ all those records, 
pullin’ Sherry outta the hat?' 

It was all great. 

But the first time 

the four of us made that sound, our sound, 
when everything dropped away 
and all there was, was the music...
that was the best."

That is all there is,
ever has been,
ever will be.

Those fleeting moments
when we touch the heart of being alive,
when that heart touches our heart,
and we are carried away
by the rightness of the moment,
of that moment,
and are left with the memory
of its passing,
and the dream
of its hoped-for return.

And, we cannot manufacture it.
We can only wait for it,
and stay out of the way.

Bluegrass musicians gather regularly
hoping to catch a sense
of what they all have known
and seek endlessly,
wishing they could be there always.

But the moment comes and goes,
and comes and goes...
Always the hope, though,
of catching it coming back around
and making it last.

Being conscious of it disappears it,
and only the memory remains.
Yet, the memory is a powerful stand-in,
and we talk about 
"That time when..."
nodding and laughing,
and knowing
the magic is as real and everlasting
as it is ephemeral and ethereal--
and, it is the ground of life and being.  


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.

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