The zenstones project represents a series of short reflections on nature and humanity as experienced in everyday life.
Suspend belief. Levitate as imagined. Wakeful dreams above the whisper of a city looking for a friend. Every breath becomes a hurricane of warmth on a cold day. Find a stranger and kiss them with your eyes. Fall into their smile with fond words and hope they will catch you. If they do not try again, a stranger becomes a friend. One day they might save your life.
Adorn yourself in the silk of the sun. Make yourself visible to the world with the song of hello. Erase the word “stranger” from your vocabulary. The only thing strange here is one who doesn’t accept the beauty of chance and the romance of an encounter. Open your arms to opening eyes. Dance with your words aimed at the fellow sitting beside you in the cafe, or the gal passing you now on the sidewalk. Ask them for an education, and they shall lead you forward into their dreams of the real. When our eyes become exclamation marks we know it is time to live always knowing we must live for the other.
Enmeshed with commodity culture identity becomes entropic. Once a fluid wonderful thing it begins to lose sense. Fragmented desires pull in infinite directions. The lustful ills of wishing to be defined by the outside world and the other. Pathology. Pure and simple pathology. The irony is that the more one wishes to define oneself the less definition one has. Polish merely hides the cracks which define. Determinism is for those begging to be controlled. A flower in a field defines and differentiates itself purely through its own existence. It does not trick itself into believing it needs to differentiate itself from another. Its universal intelligence born of the cosmos reminds it that it is singular and unique. Beauty comes not from self-ascription but from existing as is, a product of one’s self.
Fidelity should not be an issue when it comes to a city. One must realize that neither the city nor her country is capable of truly loving one back. A city must offend to be loved, and to live within a city requires a broken heart. There would be no other reason to work for her attention and gratitude if not in an attempt to mend one’s heart and to make amends for some unknown fault or damage caused. She won’t turn her back on you, there is no back to turn, but she will punish you by placing you in company of other people all vying for her attention too.
The tenderness we feel is too often quelled by the anxiety produced from the other. We mustn’t navigate the world with such subtly and instead profess the sublimity of our nature in the confidence and grace of our footsteps. To accept the negotiation of the acceptance of an other with a smile, a nod, a hello, a handshake, a hug or a kiss on the cheek. This is the tender contract and it begins with human contact. To worry less about one’s self is to already accept the audience of the other without worry in our already clumsy but spectacular dance of life.
Under the blue light of a young moon the breeze stirs up dust and dried flower petals from the stone street. This is the way that the city breaths. Moments before dawn a rogue church bell clangs in the distance. The neighbours are packing their rusty pickup truck with fruit and vegetables before hauling them to market. The sky begins to turn pink and the birds begin to sing. Traffic pulses to the rhythm of the lights and pedestrians weave their way through the stopped cars. Impatient horns announce the coming of a new day. The bus to work is more than routine, it is meditation. The city breaths and we synchronize.
The zenith of consciousness comes at the moment we realize that we have forgotten something. We stare inward at that blank void in an attempt to marry our stubborn unawareness with some semblance of a memory. The memory seems to shift away the moment we feel we might grasp it. We prowl around the circumference of our consciousness like a cat above an empty fishbowl. Everything is crystal clear yet we cannot seem to find it anywhere. If luck is on our side it might just appear out of nowhere in time for us to snag it with our little paws. But often enough, we must forget that we have forgotten something before it blossoms once again before our eyes.
Some flowers are more beautiful in their afterlife. The colour fades from once vibrant to a pleasant earthly shade and the pungency dulls as the flesh dries. The flowers have been purposefully hung upside down to dry or have been neglectfully forgotten in a cup or vase. The skeletal remains to be found on the floor or scattered on a table. Why should anyone discard of these little reminders of a life once lived? Cleaning them up and throwing them away, like raking leaves in the fall, only gives the appearance of order. But the mind and her thought is never clear until we accept that no matter where we put them, in the garbage or in the dump, wherever, they will return to the earth regardless of our hand. The wilted mushy stem or leaf gives new life, new colour, a new pungency, so just watch her and be with her. Take what you can to remember her glory in life and in death. Honour her by giving her a new life by showing her what she meant to you.