Friday, August 12, 2011

Hiding in Plain Sight

Many many many years ago, I ran away from home and found myself in a small town in the high desert in an old mining town that had become a haven for artists and hippies. I was nineteen. When I arrived there, nobody knew who I was, and the rules that had defined my life no longer applied. I had no idea what I was doing, I had nobody telling me what to do, and I literally had no no idea what was going to happen next. It was terrible and wonderful and the person I became there is the me I respect.  When I was 22 or so, I left.  I loved the place but I had my whole life ahead of me.  Many of the people there had come to hide, and I didn't want to hide.

Turns out there are lots of ways to hide. You can hide in a small town in the desert, or in your dreams, or other people's dreams, or in "what the world expects." You can hide without anyone, including yourself, noticing that some important part of you is no longer present. Recently I've discovered you can hide especially well in the past, and in regret.

I have no idea what comes next in my life, where I'm headed or what I'm going to do but I'm tired of hiding. The last time I found myself in this place, I was 19. And I was terrified. That's probably a good thing to remember.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Sisters of Mercy

So much going on in my life these days, most of it invisible to the naked eye. This song speaks to me right now.

"Sisters Of Mercy"

Oh the sisters of mercy, they are not departed or gone.
They were waiting for me when I thought that I just can't go on.
And they brought me their comfort and later they brought me this song.
Oh I hope you run into them, you who've been travelling so long.
Yes you who must leave everything that you cannot control.
It begins with your family, but soon it comes around to your soul.
Well I've been where you're hanging, I think I can see how you're pinned:
When you're not feeling holy, your loneliness says that you've sinned.

Well they lay down beside me, I made my confession to them.
They touched both my eyes and I touched the dew on their hem.
If your life is a leaf that the seasons tear off and condemn
they will bind you with love that is graceful and green as a stem.

When I left they were sleeping, I hope you run into them soon.
Don't turn on the lights, you can read their address by the moon.
And you won't make me jealous if I hear that they sweetened your night:
We weren't lovers like that and besides it would still be all right,
We weren't lovers like that and besides it would still be all right. 

-- Leonard Cohen