Beyond Telling

Watching the finale of “This Is Us” until the VCR quit recording due to the Super Bowl running overtime. Jeeze, Louise! It was quite sad, as the dad didn’t survive the fire.

It pulled all the right heartstrings with me— with all of us, for we are a race of mortals. That is a word that has never been popular in our culture, “mortal.” It hits too close to the bone.

I, who have been on the path forever, am newly shredded into bits of grief even after all of these years. I speak of it as an iceberg I live on top of. I may not be conscious of it, but it lurks there nonetheless.

The heart simply does not forget. Don’t let non- duality teachers convince you otherwise. I live a life circumscribed by this iceberg of loss. It won’t get any better—this much I know. I just understand that I live with it. This keeps me sane, believe it or not.

It would be insane to deny having spent years and years being a caregiver and then years and years of grieving for the lost child and spouse. What I leave out is that my son and I continue to pay the price of their absence.

Yesterday we drove around looking at some townhouses from the outside. It makes me sad to consider downsizing, but at some point that will probably be inevitable.

I can imagine Bob looking down on us in our loneliness. “Angel, do not be so sad. You are doing well. You are living a life of creativity and strength. Don’t kick your self for not being upbeat.”

Ah, yes. I am not an upbeat personality. Too many years of caregiving have etched my heart with permanent sorrow. I use it in my writing. Some people hate that. It makes them angry. But I do not pull back.

I also laugh and enjoy simple moments. The older I get, the less inclined I am to think my writing can do anything but move a few. That is good. That is my strength. That is my lifeline to universal love.

I don’t care to make sweeping statements about enlightenment. If my new book comes out, the title is “The Edge of Enlightenment.” I know all about that. I know the edges of almost everything and the limits that keep me both sane and safe.

A life of challenge is not for me. I have lived through dark days and nights. I am content to watch the moon from my couch and to remember quietly how it used to be. Love is ever-present in this body/mind. Sometimes it hits me hard and I know things I shouldn’t know. Don’t ask me what they are. They are beyond telling.

Just read this poem on
I can feel the truth in it.

Oana Maria Cajal, whose graphics and videos inspired by Leonard Cohen are familiar to this site’s ongoing readers, is publishing Engravings On Unwritten Snow, a series of Poems and Picto-Impulses dedicated to the Canadian singer-songwriter. The above image and the following poem constitute the third entry of this series.

Engravings On Unwritten Snow / Three
For Leonard Cohen

“He is holding her tight
In his heart of light
Holy atoms of broken divinity
Nowhere in sight
He is holding her tight
In his heart of light
Powdery stillness
On his elbow of sorrow
Ephemeral witness
Of His late forgiveness
He is holding her
In his heart of light
Birds are falling asleep
In their flight
Immaculate shadows
Of doubt”
~Oana Maria Cajal

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