The Great Escape – Part Eleven


The Great Escape – Part Eleven

Of course, that’s what we are, a river, flowing through, along, the path of time. And that path, that course, that river bed is strewn with rocks, obstacles, all manner of things that can cause us to suffer or simply slow us down. We, you, me, they, all of it, all of existence is the flowing river. It’s all energy, because that’s we are, flowing energy. We are flow-ers, flowing, flow-er children. Around and around and around it goes, river to sea to cloud to raindrop to stream to river. Round and round we go.

The flow was so slow

that I wanted to know

just why I was feeling so down.

It hadn’t rained for days

and I was in kind of daze.

The heat will do that you know,

There had been a big drought

And we’d had quite a bout

of sluggishness, indolence and sloth

We drifted for days

in a somnombulent haze,

a murkey, lugubrious broth.

I looked down and thought,

well now, look at that rock.

That must be what’s causing the trouble.

If it was moved to the right,

or moved to the left,

our flow would almost be double.

It was only a little one

wedged ‘tween two big stones.

Surely not much of a hinderance.

For a river like us

to push us and toss,

to unplug such a tiny encumberance.

So we pushed and shoved

until finally it budged

just a hair, just slightly akimbo.

Well, the trickle increased,

it was better, at least

but it still, was it worth all the trouble?

So then we laid down,

sort of puddled around,

for our effort had been quite deteriorate.

It had increased our flow rate,

and we’d opened the floodgate,

but still we continued to stagnate.

But in our dilerium

we had failed to notice some

clouds that had gone beyond cirrus.

It started to pour

like never before.

The situation became quite delireous.

Our slough of despond

had become quite a pond,

and was growing with each drop that fell.

There was thunder and lightning,

It was all very enlightning,

as our edges continued to swell.

The crack ‘tween the rocks

that the pebble had blocked

had widened into a canyon.

We tumbled and rolled

and bubbled and roiled,

then shot through it, as if from a cannon.

The ride was so frightening

the crashing and shatterting

into billions of tiny small droplets

We soared and we plummeted

dove and spummated,

until finally, we became quite exhausted.

We rode to the sea,

the you and the me,

it was there that we all then engathered.

In the warmth of our bed

We giggled and said,

Have we ever been so enraptured?

Basic Questions


Basic Questions


So I ask

what all humans have asked

from the very beginning,

the primary questions

we all ask ourselves,

that we ask our imaginations

unless we are willing to take

someone else´s word for it,

because who else is there to ask,

unless we invent someone,

and how can any answer come to be

unless someone imagines it first.


The moment we are born

we ask the four basic questions

in the language of cries and salty tears,

“What am I, who am I and what am I doing here

and what does it all mean?”

These questions are the ones

that lead to all other questions.

They are our primal prayers

and the numerous answers

which we have imagined

are the basis

for all the personalities, religions and

civilizations that have ever been

and considering how that’s worked out,

maybe it’s a good idea to ask them more ofter

with fresh eyes and ears and no preconceptions .


So I ask,

“What is this self that inhabits this husk of me?”

“Why, of all billions of various forms

that exist in creation,

has this one chosen me?

Why THIS body,

THIS life,

THIS moment,

THIS experience

of suffering and joy,

THIS situation, over which, I have so little control?”


So I sit by my window

and wait for the answers to emerge

from somewhere,

and what I see out there while I´m waiting,

is the cycle of the seasons,

the cycle of life and death and

how everything in this world

comes and goes.

Again and again,

I see the leaves falling from the trees

which then become compost

and feed the tree

which then, leafs out again.

And then there are the raindrops

which come down from the clouds

and follow all those rivers and streams

to the sea

where they evaporate and form clouds again,

over and over,

around and around and around it goes…….


And I think,

Since all these forms

keep on repeating themselves,

then maybe it´s the same with me,

but then I think,

“Can an ego, a personality

exist beyond the body?

Isn´t the individual leaf or raindrop

just a form?”

“Well,” I answer myself, “I suppose egos and personalities are forms too.  There may have been

a lot of other people that have been similar me,

but it seems doubtful that they were me,

because a son is not his father,

and a moment is never the same

as the previous moment

and nothing is really completely the same

as anything that came before it

yet much, if not all, is a result of it,

but since I don´t seem to be able to

remember anything before

this particular memory came into being,

I don’t want to take responsibility

for anything that came before,

do I? Although we DO

have the ability to forgive.


So I continue to sit at my window, watching

from behind these eyes with their limited view,

for a long time,

watching all those comings and goings,

all those fractals of existence

swirling and flowing around me

as if I were the center of it all,

and then I realize

that I AM the center of it all

but everyplace else is the center of it all too,

in fact, if that spot over there is the center of it all,

then I´m just another small part of everything

spinning around that center of everything

in some gigantic swirl,

maybe a solar system or a galaxy

or a hurricane or something,

that I really don´t have any control over.


And in a way,

I´m actually both bigger and smaller

than myself,

no more significant

than the tiniest particle of stardust,

just another fractal in the universe

in  some enormously greater imagination

than my own,

but which I am part of

and is therefor also myself.


And I think,

maybe, this smaller self,

this identity I have been cultivating

and presume to be myself,

is nothing more than an illusion, a trick,

because, you know,

I don´t think any of those leaves or raindrops

even have names

and I doubt they ask any questions

or have imaginations of their own to ask.

And yet,

each one is just a little different from the other

if you look close enough,

and one leaf is not another,

not the same leafy bunch of leaf cells at all,

and all the raindrops have

the same sort of molecules,

but each one is a distinct raindrop,

a unique individual, raindrop,

for just the time it takes

to fall out of a cloud and down to the earth

and go splat

into a bunch of even tinier droplets.


So perhaps,

the significance of those differences

is only important for a short period of time,

and only,

in relation to all the other raindrops

as they flow together into rivers and streams

then become the sea again,

the same the way the leaves and limbs

branch out to make a tree,


And perhaps

our own identities,

our own individualities,

with all our successes and failures,

all those achievements we are so proud of

and those sins and crimes we

we feel guilty of, our secrets,

all that,

which separates us from one another,

you from me and me from you,

is only significant

in our relations to one another,

and in how we treat one another

and love one another

and where we are going with all that together,

which we DO have some control over,

within the great imagination,

which has conceived it all

the great sea in which each of us

is only a mere temporary drop

of our true self.


Do you think that any of this might be possibly so?

Does any of this make sense to you?

“I Led Three Lives.”


         This morning, I got up, dressed and set the kettle on the burner to make coffee.  I got a bottle of juice from the cooler and poured myself a glassful.  Then, I sat down at the table and found my cigarettes in the mess and lit one.  “Damn,” I said for the millionth time, “I really need to quit these.”

I watched the smoke curl and disappear in front of me.  “Who am I talking to,” I asked. “and why doesn´t he do something about it?”

The kettle whistled and I put down the cigarette, went over and took a cup out of the dish rack.  I looked at it.  “Damn,” I said, “I should soak these in bleach water to get rid of those coffee stains.”  I put some Nescafe in the cup and poured, enjoying the somewhat artificial coffee aroma wafting from the cup. “Why don´t I ever do anything about it?” I asked myself.  I wondered again, who I was talking to.  I took a sip and began thinking about it all.

I began compartmentalizing myself.  The me that I was talking to; the me who was talking.  And who was it that was perceiving them both?

I think, I thought, that the speaker is my inner self, my mind.  The other one is my physical self, my body.  My inner self wants my body to do something, but my body doesn´t care.  Ok. So who is the one who wants to soak coffee cups and quit smoking and who is the other? Aren´t they the same person?

I have to think that my inner self is somewhat imaginary, not being part of the physical plane.  He seem to think he´s rather important and likes to give orders.  He makes a lot of grandiose pronouncements and is very judgmental, a hopeless critic.  He thinks of my physical self as an idiotic dolt.  Incapable of doing anything without him.  Of course, this is not entirely true.  He breaths and beats his heart without thinking about it at all.

Being an inner self can be frustrating.  My physical self doesn´t always listen and he´s the one with the fingers and toes.

The inner self gets all his information through the senses.  He also has an amazing filing system called the memory.  He´s really quite intelligent and clever, but of course, there´s an awful lot of data he hasn´t collected yet, and a lot of the connections, the assumed connections he makes between pieces of data are kind of iffy.  He´s wrong a lot.

Then there´s my physical self.  He´s sort of oafish and lazy.  It takes a lot of prodding by my inner self to get him moving.  He only wants to do what he has too.  He doesn´t like making mistakes, but he´s pretty gullible. He´s aged and grown a little tired and, to tell the truth, he´s always been a little lazy.  He doesn´t have any imagination at all, he depends on DNA and the inner self to tell him what to do next.

Then there´s the third self.  This is a most mysterious self.  We don´t know much about it.  It´s hard to pin it down.  Apparently, this self is some sort of spirit and a shape shifter to boot.  In fact, it can appear as either self or other, and pops up in the most unexpected places.  The spirit self can be me or it can be you or it can be a bird, an insect or a petunia.  It can even take the form of things like gravity.  It can be a burning bush or a virgin mother appearing on hill with a bunch of roses and a self-portrait on a serape to an Indio peasant called Juan Diego to confirm her presence.  Or it can be an ordinary rock or piece of wood.  In fact, it can be anything you can imagine, a he, a she or an it.  I suppose it´s the great nothingness that surrounds every star, every planet or every molecule and atom. That which forms the shape of everything that appears to be physical.

Anyway, I´ve made up this version up for the purpose of explaining that part of myself to myself and to tell this story.

Neither my inner self or my physical self have any real power.  Only, in fact, what the spirit self allows them.  My inner self only has the power to imagine and suggest.  My physical self can only “do” what it is physically capable of doing.

There are times when my inner self becomes jealous of my spirit self and refuses to acknowledge him.  This never works out.  He likes to fool himself into believing that he knows it all.  Then he starts prodding and pushing my physical self around with bad advice.

I´ve seen him doing this while yelling things like “Get moving you stupid, lazy idiot!” and “You´ve always been such a weakling!”, kicking and lashing at him as if he was some stubborn mule.

As a judge and critic, he can really be brutal. “Get going you dumb, ugly, useless son-of-a-bitch!”  My physical self, of course, can only do what he can do.  This really frustrates my inner self because he, himself, can´t do anything unless my physical self does it.  “No wonder I´m still smoking and the cups aren´t soaked!!” he screams, “I hate you!!”

Then, sometimes my inner self talks my physical self into drinking too much beer or tequila to make himself feel less frustrated.  My physical self usually goes along with this because he´s sick and tired of being bullied and would like to have a little fun himself.

What happens after that, is my spirit self gets mad and steps in and kicks both their butts.  He usually uses some strong and unpleasant emotion like self-disgust or regret to do this, but sometimes he resorts to real physical maladies such as the hang-over. He´s big on natural law and justice.  Sometimes, this spirit speaks to us in the language of pain and suffering.

“It´s his stubbornness that caused it!” my inner self cries.

“It was his idea!” my physical self whines, “He started it! I don´t see why I should be punished!”

“You lifted the glass, didn´t you?” my spirit self says, “and your both old enough to know better!”

He can be a real bugger when he gets mad, but he offers positive solutions as well. “Love is the answer, boys, love is the answer!”

My inner self sasses back, “Isn´t that kind of narcissistic?” Always the critic, always the smart ass.

“Does your bullying ever work?” my spirit self asks.

My inner self sulks and grumbles like a sullen teen-ager.  My physical self just droops and pouts.

“Hey,” the spirit self says, “I´m not really fond of punishment, you know. I know you have to be wrong to be right, but what does it take?  “LOVE IS THE ANSWER!!!”

And so we go down the highway, my inner and physical selves banished to opposite ends of the back seat, still silently blaming one another as my spirit self drives on.

Well, there are obviously people who have better behaved inner and physical selves than mine.  People who actually quit smoking and soak their coffee cups to get rid of the stains.

And so, my struggle continues.

I wish you luck with yours.