Robert (gurdonark) wrote,
Robert
gurdonark

counting coup



"I felt we will win this war, and lose the peace"--LJ entry, March 16, 2003




Tonight at the Garland Bar Association the family judges spoke. They're good folks--sensible, straightforward people who have literally heard it all. Practicing law in general does that to you--that realization that we all have seven secrets, each more banal than the one before. If ever those secrets are unmasked, then, like flies,seven new secrets take the place of each revealed secret. Judges get the experience of hearing those secrets day in and day out. They say that when a constant light current persists against one's skin, the shock wears off.

I read the journal of someone whose journal I always liked reading, until one of those pointless and truly banal breaks in the action resulted in me taking the rare step of defriending that person, and vice versa, and so on, king of kings, frank the goat of frank the goat, forever and ever, alleluia, amen. It felt good to see that kool-aid still flowed freely from that kind person's stand. Spiffy tiffs are themselves banal, especially when they take place on a stage in which the absence of nuance and true feeling makes interaction less suburban than Ionesco. Ultimately, one cheers for people who fight on the right side, even if one is not in constant contact with them. We're all flower warriors, really, riding with long-stem roses for jousting sticks, taking coup, counting coup, coup d'etat, coup de grace, coups at de Grassi High. Every field of trenches should have a Christmas Day peace, a time when the rank and file realizes that we all should play soccer and sing carols tonight.

I've held off doing resolutions, other than a resolution to lose 12 more pounds (one per month seeming to me to be moderate). I'll not stick to my resolve not to have resolutions--I suspect I will break down and make some this weekend. I have so many nagging small commitments that I need to fulfill before I could make new ones. I'm not saying that I won't make any until I mail out a set of bongo drums, soft-bind a set of disparate poems, write a friend to whom I long owe a letter, and mail out mint julep tea. I instead must be able to rationalize why I don't do those things, and then, for some reason, I will do them.

I am not much one for the DSM way of looking at life. My degrees are:
a. a bachelor of arts in physics, with a "special emphasis area" in English literature; and
b. a juris doctor degree.

Neither of these degrees gave me the keen insight into psychiatric or chemical diagnoses and the root causes of people's personal challenges. I tend to start from the place that we all need understanding, because we're all so weird and fragile. The fact that some are eggshells and others are hard-boiled eggs doesn't change the fundamental premise, but merely emphasizes that one cannot be too judgmental, except perhaps as to whether gingerbread cookies should be crisp or dough-y (a test of human character, by the way, that I recommend to that fellow at eharmony.com. I suspect that more marriages can be prognosticated based on the Molasses Compatibility Test than based on trivia like desired traits in a spouse and traitorous needs in spousal desire).

I do wonder, sometimes, if my personal disorganization is genetic, or symptomatic of some disorder with a hyphenated name. But such wonderings are vague substitutes for, let me imagine, cleaning my spare room. In World War One, when the "higher ups" figured out that the "other ranks" might call off the war each Christmas, they promptly ordered bombardments of the enemy lines for the holidays. Heaven forbid that peace break out. I think in this newest year of ways to avoid shelling the enemy, and also of ways to advance beyond my entrenched positions.

I feel a giant sense of gathering in, and a muted sense of reaching out. The war is over; the war never ends. We have created a democracy. 101 people died from bombardment. The individual is powerless. The only power that ever did any good is the power of the individual. Perhaps all one can do is strech one's hand, and oneself, and look at the Pleiades through binoculars, and see there are not the seven one is bound to see, but thousands upon thousands.

The fellow on Hlll Street Blues used to say "let's all be careful out there". I think, sometimes, that this is the only true grace people ever exhibit. Let's all be careful--out there.
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