Spoilers: Letter to Karleen
Letters are the best! The best. Proper letters, on paper with an envelope and a stamp tempered by time nestled up against other letters traveling across country in trucks or vans or airplanes. Depending on the interlocutor, its like a journal, but witnessed. You toss down your burdens. You aren’t alone with the head buzz of ‘stuff’ (no matter how legitimate), and the time it takes to run a pen across a page slows down expression just enough (to catch a breath?),; as well, there moments of marination between writing and posting the letter. Its a beautiful process. And I felt all that as I read your letter. I felt how different it was from talking with you on the phone, or reading an email or your blog, all of which are equally authentic yet each bounded by different ‘rules’ of time.
And I think of your concerns—not the specifics but the fact that you have them—and we all have these karmas that eat us for lunch. Lately, on the mesa, I struggle for the right to be happy, to be content. I fell both quite a lot, and then I am hit with a dump of penitential guilt. Perhaps: I am utterly irresponsible and selfish; humans, particularly women, are meant to get their joy, if allowed any, from serving others, and the more gruesome the service the more peace we are meant to feel; or, simply, a good person is an obedient person is a happy person. That obedience, of course, is to rules and regs set down by others. Well! All of that lurks in my shadows. In my life, which I suspect looks carefree to others, I knuckle down hard—be a good artist, (Obey those Art rules, which someone else made up!), be a good Sufi (Pray hard, hard hard!), etc. So to sit here flowing lightly with the day, shot through with a loving peace, listening and sensing my through, is both soft and radical.
What do any of us deserve? Our time. Our own organic rhythm with no Spoilers. Spoilers—the worst sort of people. Truly. Spoilers are those who stomp on the happiness of others (because they don’t cultivate their own?) I’ve got quite a few inside me still, but it’s the outside ones that P me off. “Go clean up!” I think. That’s in part what a decent spiritual path is in part—not inflicting one’s misery on others. And not eroding their peace and joy, their precious peace and joy.
I’m looking at rosy morning rays play over the wide face of Hermit’s Peak, that massive edifice you see from the top of the mesa. Little magenta flowers that open in the morning and close at night like Morning Glories bob around my ankles in the Pine Grove. I saw an enormous tarantula yesterday around dusk. The size of my foot. Black with a yellow back. Ge stalked relentlessly across the fire pit toward the Ponderosa forest. What a creature!
Since you were here, the metal roof and gutters are on and a 250 gallon cistern collecting off the lower roof is nearly full. Water! Now I just carry or boil drinking water. I am mostly at ease now except for the having no plan about scaring off the bears. I’m working on getting a loud blasting horn. For now, I have stopped watched videos on my computer at night, since the sound keeps from hearing outdoor noises. Instead I entertain myself by writing the fiction novel. I know you’ll be amused by that turn.
So mesa life unfolds.
I send you a big hug. And much, much love.