Watching the Decline

This will not be a work of lovely sentiments or humour or creative ideas to boost the dear reader along.  The following is a  more formal collection of memories in response to a question from a dearheart not seen for many, many years.  The questioner had moved far away a few decades past.

“What happened?” Was the question about the closing of a mutually loved dear church.  It was of a major protestant denomination that loses annually more previously avowed members than it gains.  The numbers lost are in the number of millions.

A long time thinking, and a long time reading my personal journals revealed the truth of the club of callous hearts and self-absorption.  People who are not inclined to personal conducts of honesty, loving, compassion, or self-sacrifice for other people.

The most recent reverend had been at the church two minutes early and stayed two minutes late every Sunday for a year.  Each sermon was well delivered and brought humour at times. His subject: His dog. EVERY Sunday the sermon topic was the dog, the dog’s antics, the dog’s breeding, and how sweetly the dog played with the children. Not the Bible, not John Wesley, not Jesus or Paul or John. Not one time.  However, he was well educated, and well placed in the opinions of the ‘church leadership’.

But, he was a slight improvement over the pastors just before him: a duo referred to as the warring retirees.  A man and wife pastoral team who couldn’t make their dollar’s ends meet on their various, multiple retirement incomes that went back and forth as a subject of boasting to cursing their pittances of amounts that were in the six digits annually. Too, they didn’t want to come into the Church’s county from their far away country estate for the middle of the week church meetings, or hospital visits either.  Funerals or family visitations would not be done either.

There were other pastors, other, numerous offences to the sensibilities so many as to fill months and months of posts.

Then too, there were the conducts of people of the congregation to be remembered.  Several handfuls of various cliques within cliques. Their hearts so cold, so callous that only words will reveal them.

When their church pianist took ill on a Friday evening with blood sugar readings in the four hundred group of numbers, the clique was offended that said pianist did not give them sufficient notice for Sunday morning service.  True she was still in the hospital and would be for several months into the future.  True that the ‘clique’ would luncheon after every Sunday service at a restaurant within a hundred yards of the Pianist’s hospital room.  Other than the visits and care of her family, not one visit was paid her by pastor or group or individual from that church.  Not one call was made to the pianist’s family, doctor or even the hospital nurse’s station. Not one

A sadness in action and inaction.  A continuation into the present.  An embarrassment without apology. Rude disregards without thought or an ‘excuse me’.

Different Sunday, different decade, same cliques, same cold, callous disregard for those people not ‘in’ the group. Scant numbers in pews once packed full. Frequent utterances from people bold and honest of their personal persuasion of bigotry and their commitment to intolerance.

Scant numbers in pews once packed full. Frequent utterances from people bold and honest of their personal persuasion of bigotry and their commitment to intolerance.

Inclusion? None. Embrace? None. Acceptance? None. Loving the neighbour in the pew? Not really.  Lip service, hand-shakes, and pats on the back all the utmost perfunctory and fake. As in phoney-baloney.





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Saying Goodbye

Transitioning to the other side of life some people call death is a subject of so many unknowns.

On the seventh of February one Beloved left.  On the tenth of March, her husband of nearly thirty years went to be with her.

She made her joy known by making a stunning rainbow in mostly pink shades around her daughter.

He played his favourite song, Over the Rainbow, just as his daughter turned on the radio.

The arrogant and ignorant and self-opinionated may use that word made for such events: Coincidence.

People ask me what are my thoughts on this thing called Transition, or more coarsely, death.

I ask them to show me Where, please, Where is this thing called death? I ask them also to tell me When?.

Many ancients speak that the death, the true death is when we, me, maybe you, are born into a physical body, on this planet called Earth.  We are then so disconnected from the Liberties of spirit that it is a kind of death.

I wonder and question the terminology: death equals gone, never more, kaput. But those are false, as in liars, liars, pants on fire-ars.

We, on beautiful Planet Earth, as it circles the Sun as they Spiral through the Universe, have no new anything. No new birth of anything either.

The air is the same as Cleopatra’s air. The water is the same (albeit more polluted). Mountains have sunk. Mountains have risen. We circle the same Sun. We share with the same other planets.

No thing is new. Every thing is changed.  moment to moment. Yet not ever new.




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New Passwords

New passwords all the way around.   EEEEk  What an undertaking!  New phones. New phone service provider

New phones. New phone service provider,  Tendonitis making the programming a challenge.

Hopefully, I will be in a position to write more often.

Thank you for your patience.

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Attitude Perspective

Mr. Horton and I were enjoying a popular tourist’s venue.  We paid a lot of money for each other’s ticket.The outdoor theater setting was a perfection of light and temperature. There were no disappointments for either of us. the performances were well done, the costumes brilliantly colored and uniquely creative.

For we two avid people watchers there were bonuses to see all around us. At the generous break time, we waited in line for our sandwiches and drinks.  Sprinkled about were tables and shades and lawn benches.

A man sat with his head bowed to the back of his hands.  His fingers, shoulders, and every part of him sagged, deeply to the ground.  A woman of unknown relationship,  leaned toward him and asked. “Do you want me to call the pilot and have the plane readied?  Side to side he shook his head, a frown consumed his mouth, his eyes, and his forehead. Seeing his motion, she hurriedly said. “We could go to Denver or San Francisco. Anywhere really.”

“No. There is nothing there, anywhere really. No.”

We took in their wardrobe of wealth. The woman’s expression was clearly on of loving compassion. Their skins glowed with vigor and health and a clarity in their eyes that could only be from physical health. Diamonds sparkled at her wrist and neck. Faint fragrances came from them each.

Yet he answered genuinely, and heartfelt from his perspective. “No. There is nothing there, anywhere really. No.”

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The day before Thanksgiving………

Friends are in from Virginia. We enjoyed a flavorful meal and lots of laughter interspersed with conversation last night.

Tonight will be a family meeting with the all-American, and a favorite of various Pizza choices. Thanksgiving and a birthday celebration are the reasons for the gathering.

Recently my thoughts have turned to people who are quite special on a planet of so many billions of folks. I’ve looked at the statistics of how many people are literate, who can read.  Then when I compare that information with how many people who can write, actually form letters onto a surface and use them to convey their ideas, thoughts, instructions, then the numbers drop, dramatically. To further refine the criteria and include people who draw and paint and compose music, design buildings, create world’s of fiction in novels, is to see a minute percentage of the global population.

I believe this teensy-weensy percentage of people are Divinely Appointed to use their words. Maybe I and we do not know what to do with those words, or how to use them.  Limiting or denying our story, our perspectives, is not an option.

Libraries are littered with texts written by people who had no intention publishing. Diaries and journals and mathematical calculations reach across centuries to speak into our awareness today.

I believe there are people who are special. They write of their experiences, some of which are thick with horrors and traumas and tragedy, yet they rise high and beyond the reach of the foul damning monsters and become stars to guide other people, people they will not ever meet or know of,  through the darkness.

So many times I’ve wondered ‘What is my purpose?’. Not a question asked by just me.  So many as to be countless are the people I have heard question the same thing.  Now, on this day before Thanksgiving, six plus decades into my life, I know the answer.  Finally, I put things together in my thoughts to come to a ‘Duh!’ moment.

I’m born into a nation of constitutionally protected freedoms and liberties I was taught. I read, I write, I paint paintings. I use my words to tell stories. I have the liberty to do anything I want.

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An Artist Remembers

Many years past, I fell into a state of joy using Pastels as a medium for my expressed visions.  These heavily pigmented sticks are expensive as art supplies go; about four dollars a piece, and go quickly on a surface sanded especially for painting. Considering that my works are large-ish two feet by three or so feet, it takes many sticks of color.

The vibrancy that meets my eyes with their use is stunning! Breathing the dust is not so pleasant. Often I wear a mask and rubber gloves. It is tedious and tiresome sweeping or vacuuming the mess.  

But. What Pastels do for a landscape is beyond compare to other mediums. 

Also, in those decades past, I began a journal of works I would create. Sketches, notes, photographs and more photographs of different but similar places, lighting situations and different looks of weather, were accumulated.  These plans were as thorough as a person born in late August or early September could make them.

Hours were used in the study of my medium. More hours were used in studying other artists who used Pastels as their medium. Google research over several weeks to determine the finer points of using or not using evaporatives or fixatives. I chose abstinence of those products.

Countless were the weekends my beloved and I spent strolling galleries, museums and various outdoor events of truly great artists.

Deep and lasting in their effects, have been the meditations and contemplations and joy from working the hours, sometimes in the triple digit hours, creating my art.

Hard work, lots of lifting, ladder climbing, and great entertainment and lots of fun, did I  experience having a ‘show’ of my art.  Especially, my sweet face showed wonder and awe.

The truest of the true art were the people who looked at my precious, carefully created works and earnestly  wanted me to know what they paid for framing (five and eight hundred dollars) their cheap and wrinkled copy cat prints, beneath cheaper plexiglass and crooked mats. They, more than one, showed me pictures, of their living room wall, their hall wall, their dining room wall……….

Curious to me were the people who were so bold as to hint, strongly hint, that they had just the place to hang a work of mine if I would be so kind as to gift it to them.  Assuring me they like the same colors I liked. Then there were hints, more hints, and pictures more pictures.






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Rear Ended

That suddenly, that unexpectedly, the two words and all that they mean in the way of experience and definition happened to me Saturday the 13, about 1:35.

My car will be what is called, Total-ed. The physical injuries are still hurtful, problematic and scary. Doctors and their tests, lots of tests,  will soon absorb my days. I’ve become a statistic.  I’ve had nightmares related to the accident. I had to empty my car of all the stuff I stored  for future use,  and carried place to place.

To, I am learning the fine details of maneuvering in a giant monster of rental vehicle.  The radio is so very complicated. There are blinking lights and dials and buttons to push and an assortment of options on a touch screen.  I haven’t heard any sound from it as yet though.  It has XM and other Satellite stations, it can talk to me and tell that it is time to have its oil changed,  and yet it doesn’t communicate with other star’s inhabitants.  Drat.

The difficulties presented with the accident  are so many and  among so many other confusing ways  Ex. The ‘Other guy’s insurance’  will pay for extra collision insurance: 15.99 per day on the rental they had me get ( five days after the accident) but they will not pay co-pay at the Doctor’s or give me insurance with which to see the Doctor.  I have to pay all that, then they will ‘discuss’ paying the charges with my insurance……….Discuss…..

There well also be ‘loss’ on my car. For some reason the Other Guy’s Insurance people seem to think I should know that already, accept it without a blink, and make no challenge to them……

The Other Guy’s Insurance People I have talked with are so friendly, and they refer to me as Miss Alice, all sweetness and light, all the while the victimization of me, my peace, my safety, my time and my money,  are frequent and catalogued. When I question them or challenge what they are doing and not doing, then they say: Oh we have to do it this way. Oh we can not do it any other way.







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