Archive for January, 2011

Life. Death. Life.

January 29, 2011

(Originally published December 1, 2010, in my MySpace blog)

Dear Friends,

I haven’t been in touch for a few weeks.  There’s enough blather in the worlds these days.  I decline to add empty words, devoid of real passion.   I find myself thus challenged to be honest with you.

Someone I know died on Sunday.  Not “immediate” family, but still close.  He was younger than I by a couple of years, and left two kids just entering their teens, and a very frail and elderly mother who has to say goodbye to her youngest son.

How do we carry grief?  This kind of sorrow sits in our bodies like lead in the belly.  It spreads through our brain, our thoughts, in every direction.  We are our own flood-ravaged landscape, no part of our psyche escapes the touch of that tide, even the parts that remained above the flood line are enveloped in the wafting scent of loss.

Beyond this landscape, we can, occasionally, become aware of the great wheel turning, the world spinning, life and death unending, like the proverbial snake eating its own tail, no beginning, no end.  When we walk a path with our eyes glued to the ground, terrified of the inevitable stumbling blocks in our way, all we can see is the dirt that takes us all.

But we can also stop, right now.  Don’t take another step.  Be grounded, look up to where the sun is shining, and see its procession across the sky.  The sun’s progress is our own.  Day by day we rise, work our way across an expanse of sky, and retire at night, to some place below the horizon, unseen.  Life – every little bit of it – marches along the same path; we have our time in the sun, and then we retire into that good night, until it is time to begin again, fresh, full of new promise.  This is Life, and we are all part of the parade, during the sunlit and the obscure times.  The journey does not end.

So I sit with the sadness, share memories with other loved ones, and let this season be what it must be.   Be well, my friends.

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The DREAM ACT and the American Dream

January 29, 2011

The following was originally posted November 18, 2010, on my MySpace blog:

 

I’m venturing in a slightly different direction this week. If you care to join me, come on along.

Let’s start with some song lyrics:

There was a rose
It didn’t choose where it was planted
So it goes
It only wants to bloom and grow.
And though we’re told
Permission never was quite granted,
Roots go low
‘Cause it’s the only home it knows.

There was a rose
It didn’t choose where it should be
As much a gift
As if it grew here from a seed.
But there are those, who only see it as a weed,
And a weed must be chopped down.

But there’s a DREAM
just to bloom where you’re plante
d
DREAM just to live and to grow.
DREAM, asking no extra chances
Just let this rose, let this rose stay home.

Let this rose, let this rose stay home.

There are young people in the U.S. who were brought here as young children by families who, yes, came here illegally. This is not a debate about the actions of the parents.  Minors are not responsible for the actions of their parents.  These kids grew up as Americans, finishing school, in many cases going on to college, or to serve in the military, but they have no path to legal residency or citizenship. If they are discovered, through even something as minor as making a rolling stop at a stop sign, they risk being “sent back”, – in many cases, to a country they don’t even remember and where they know no one.

The DREAM ACT would provide such a path for young people caught in this trap through no fault of their own. They could earn the right to formally belong in the only land they know.

This seems both fair to them and beneficial for the U.S., to nurture the resources that are already here.  I know it’s controversial.  I don’t encourage you to agree with me, but I encourage you to inform yourself and, if you are so inclined, to call your Congress person – you’re free to weigh in on either side, of course.  This IS America, after all.  I just like to think of America as a place where we don’t punish the innocent.

The DREAM ACT is currently before Congress, and the odds are slim that it will pass before the end of this session.  Odds are even slimmer that it will pass in the next.

The link before is just a starting place to get an understanding of the debate.  If you are interested there is a lot of info in the Web, much of it coming from college students.

http://www.propublica.org/article/rocky-road-ahead-for-dream-act