Monday, March 5, 2012
Etty Hillesum, in An Interrupted Life, wrote "One does not put things on paper to create masterpieces, but rather to gain some clarity." Robert Benson quotes this in That We May Perfectly Love Thee followed by, "My work at least as I have come to see it and understand it, is to try to tell my own story with some degree of clarity and art."
This is how I feel about what I put here. Today is just a group of really, non-related things that have gone through my mind the last several days.
I am reading Dorothy Day's autobiography and my mind is going a hundred miles a minute. On page
38 she writes, "I felt even at fifteen, that God meant man to be happy, that God meant to provide him with what he needed to maintain life in order to be happy, and that we did not need to have quite so much destitution and misery as I saw all around and read of in the daily press. From my earliest remembrance the destitute were always looked upon as the shiftless, the worthless, those without talent of any kind, let alone the ability to make a living for themselves. They were that way because of their own fault. They chose their lot. They drank. They were the prodigal sons who were eating the swines' husks only because they had squandered their inheritance. Since it was in the bible it must be so. Even Our Lord Himself said that the poor we would always have with us."
I fear I was somewhat raised with this attitude as well. I cannot remember the church I was raised in ever talk about caring for the poor. I know the scriptures were read but we were never encouraged to do something about it. In my mother's family, we had a few that were always poor. And, truth be told much of their pain was self-inflicted in that they made some really bad decisions. However, we never discussed what kind of pain forced them into those decisions. It was just that Grandpa and Grandma kept bailing them out. I cannot remember a time when my nuclear family did something to help the poor we didn't know.
I want that thing that is deep in my heart to be gone. There has been a guilt-driven attention to this act of love active in me lately. But, I have yet to find my focus to act it out. This is not an excuse! The time has come.
Now, a totally disconnected direction....Here are some haikus I have written over the last several months. I just thought it would be good for me to share them.
I am alone here
Now waiting to be rescued
Trying to have faith
God, my mystery
Where now have you brought me to?
God, my mystery
I once knew a God
He has become a stranger
Shall we meet again?
My heart, once vital
Has become blinded by words
Can silence restore?
Words, words, words, words, words
Words destroy, destroy, destroy
Words, words words, words, words.