Tuesday, September 29, 2015

You Didn't Think I Was Going To Waste My Life Trying To Make Money, Did You?

Look where it's gotten you, and,
where it's gotten to you. 

Only a few rulers that got to power
through war turned their efforts to 
peace...Ashoka and Charlemagne,
(somewhat), come to mind.

Greed is a one way street.
Luxury gets old.
The pursuit has no more 
understanding in it
than a board game.

I saw it, somehow, when I was
young...perhaps it was because
growing up in a melodrama...it was all
exaggerated and unreal, even my
father's success. The first person
I met that I would call "real" was
my English teacher when I was 17.
I had just arrived on campus of my
boarding school for my junior year.
This short man came up to me and
introduced himself...Mr. Osborne,
and shook my hand, and said he was
looking forward to working with me.
That was the first time anyone treated
me as if I was a real person...I was

That was what I was attracted to...that
realness. He taught me to be an actor
the next two years. He could have
taught me anything. 

So, no, when ever I was among a group 
of people working hard, it always raised 
a question....like the one afternoon I visited
the Boy Scouts, and they were busy 
learning to tie knots under bright lamps, no,
I never went back. College was the same. 
A school where students studied under bright
lamps because they didn't get into Harvard,
but they could still get into graduate school...
not elite, but good enough.  Me, it took a year
to give up that illusion. And another year of
drugs to give up everything else....erase and
get back to tabula rasa....going against the
stream I knew by then.

Oddly enough, it opened me to everything..
new possibilities, new knowledge that was
just becoming available in USA. Buddhism,
for example. What I discovered I had been.
looking for....and, koanically, had been 
looking for me.

So, I forgot about money for a long time...
managed to work things around..it was 
easier in those days because our parents,
the best generation, having still not lost
control of USA, were very supportive and
permissive.....this scared the crap out of 
power. They won the domestic, civil, flower
power war....the last time poems got close
to being as powerful as bullets. They didn't
get that close. 

I knew I was something besides regular, so,
I chose plumbing, both as something I could
learn that would make a living, that it could 
travel, and, I wouldn't have to think so much
to do it, which, I thought, would help quiet, or,
still my mind.

I was completely correct. I was the snake, 
and, I bit me.

If I look at now, and assess the process of
my life....if I just describe my life right now,
that would be more interesting for all of us,
rather than giving my opinion of 
what happened.

Tepoztlan, Morelos, Mexico....In October,
I will have been here ten years. They went
very fast...but even a second is history.

Now, I sit in my casita, in total reflection, if
you want to characterize me that way right
now.... sixty six years old...still physically
functional...minor problems with the legs
and joints because of thirty years of 
plumbing.....stomach's going because of
drinking....mind just keeps getting better
and better....whatever you imagine that
might mean. That's because of forty five 
years of meditation.....read the 
goddamned Time article, the one where
there's a monk, head covered in probes.

I have plenty of patience.
If I didn't, if I was a poet,
I wouldn't bother writing.


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