To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven. That poem from Ecclesiastes kept me going for years. I was considered promising when I was young, and as the years drifted by, I hoped it was true. That I was some sort of late bloomer and not some lazy sod who didn't bother to live up to her full potential.
The cause of the error is very simple, I thought. as I regarded the five pine bookcases in my apartment; memories themselves of my dad creating them for me with his hands in the garage where he spent so much of his time. Over six feet tall, the bookcases held my own memories, and they had to go. I wasn't the language scholar or the craft person any more. I wasn't even going to read all those theology books from my dad, and they were in my major. And if theology taught me anything it was that we don't have a purpose, except to be loved. What hubris that is, to think we can claim or discern some cosmic plan for our lives. It's fun to do and it sells books but we all get the same wage in the end.
We are used, when needed, by God to fulfill his purposes. In the in-between we can cry and rail and yell about all our problems and how unjust it all is, but if we are wise, we become grateful for our difficulties. Those difficulties are often just the thing we need to be compassionate and patient and not a horror to everyone else. We are loved and we are used and in the in-between we make our own choices. The error is simple: It is in thinking, we have to do this alone.
---By Carla Blaschka 10/15/2011
the Richard Hugo House as well as with William James, lost, someplace in Cyberspace.
Purple Mark's Prompts Used Loosely:
- Jules Verne: Five Complete Novels. (Gramercy Books, 1995)
- "The cause of the error is very simple" Around the World in 80 Days
- Jane Hirshfield: "The poem taught me to be grateful for my difficulties." Bill Moyer. Fooling with Words: A Celebration of Poets and their Craft. (Harper Paperbacks, 2000).
- Object: Five bookcases, 3 x 6-feet high holding her (my) memories.
- Idea: Moment of epiphany; a sudden discovery.
Also check out my new wordpress website. It's a literary journal I am building up called Randomly Accessed Poetics! Submissions are open for short stories, flash fiction, explicit language pieces, and poetry. At Randomly Accessed Poetics I am featuring more polished literary works and, eventually, a journal a relative wrote in the late 1800's detailing their journey to Oregon on the Oregon Trail. And when I gather enough submitted works from other people, I will cobble together an e-anthology called Randomly Accessed Poetics.