I can’t even begin to wrap my head around yet another shooting. El Paso, Texas. Nineteen people. Sadness and disgust. I want to live in a society that is more just, more civil, more kind & gentle. I want to tell you about the wonderful little world at Laguna Honda Hospital, South3, the palliative care ward where I volunteer for Zen Hospice Project. The patients. The nurses. The volunteers. A group of people who are, for the most part, kind & gentle. Tonight I want to tell you about Robert, a beautiful soul of a volunteer who devoted over 20 years to sitting at the bedside. He died this week. We just found out he had cancer maybe 6 weeks ago. Such a kind & gentle soul. He would bake cookies for the community meetings. He tended the garden. He made a point of seeking out the patients who didn’t have visitors. . . .and he would sit with them. Generosity of soul, that man. I want to live in a world where we celebrate the Roberts of the world.
It comforts me to know that our beloved Jen Burner will be at the helm tomorrow morning; helping us move through our feelings with her carefully selected soundscape.
Here’s a poem for us to ponder:
by Danusha Laméris
I’ve been thinking about the way, when you walk down a crowded aisle, people pull in their legs to let you by. Or how strangers still say “bless you” when someone sneezes, a leftover from the Bubonic plague. “Don’t die,” we are saying. And sometimes, when you spill lemons from your grocery bag, someone else will help you pick them up. Mostly, we don’t want to harm each other. We want to be handed our cup of coffee hot, and to say thank you to the person handing it. To smile at them and for them to smile back. For the waitress to call us honey when she sets down the bowl of clam chowder, and for the driver in the red pick-up truck to let us pass. We have so little of each other, now. So far from tribe and fire. Only these brief moments of exchange. What if they are the true dwelling of the holy, these fleeting temples we make together when we say, “Here, have my seat,” “Go ahead—you first,” “I like your hat.”
“ . . . .the true dwelling of the holy.” I love that line.
Let’s love one another.
Let’s be kind & gentle.
Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow.