Monday, April 13, 2015

A Post Script To Moonlight - A Resurrected Draft

There are moments, walking out into the moonlight, that I miss you much more than I care to. I grin as I imagine a jealous sun casting a backwards glance to the east, not wanting to leave you for even a day. When my heart is full imagining you smiling somewhere, I play a silly game bouncing my eyes from star to star back to Acton, Amman, or Alexandria, back to a moment locked deeply away in my heart. On lesser nights, I turn my gaze away unable to mitigate the pain without hoping against your happiness. And I close my eyes and wonder about loneliness and emptiness and endlessness, and the expanse of pain and space. I move inwards then and pray for a separate place, a universe without time or blame, somewhere to tuck the bits of my love that were pure and perfect and painless. Someplace protected from the rest of me, someplace near my soul perhaps, someplace to visit from time to time, someplace simply to rest.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

The Congo

I have a reasonable chance to go to the Democratic Republic of Congo next month to do some work in a large UN refugee camp. The camp is for refugees from the nearby civil war in the Central African Republic. If chosen, and if granted the release time, I would be creating a new secondary ESL curriculum in the camp centered around the UN's Conflict Resolution curricula, Additionally, I would co-author a handbook for ESL clubs in the camp for conversation activities based on their experiences, adjustment, and ongoing issues. The goal then would be to share it with camps around the world.
This would be a tremendous opportunity, and it dovetails nicely with the work I am doing here. My life has not been typical, and it certainly isn't gonna wrap up that way evidently. At 55, my dream would be to live in a squalid camp teaching and helping good people to leave the very place I would thrive in. I could spend the rest of my life doing this work, despite the risks and consequences. I don't think it is philanthropy or altruism, just where the groove of my live has been ground. Grace is the repeated, gradual accumulation of small gestures, tiny sacrifices, momentary inconveniences. Here in the west, my grace is mediated by too many distractions, too many coarse appeals to my weaknesses. I have learned that a ledger sheet is not a profitable measure of a man - like my step-father, I would weigh my strengths disproportionately and ignore or rationalize the rest creating some sort of skewed black state acknowledged only by the fearful and fellow philanderers. I don't want that. I want my life to increase in its efficacy and impact. I want to channel all those failures, losses, and misplaced desires into a selfless service to others. I want to dismantle my ego and insecurity and reconstitute them in God's grace, something I sometimes feel but cannot yet summon. I want to be a good man.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Message in a Bottle

I am here, smiling every time I think about you. Happy you are well, willing even to hum a few bars from an old Elvis Presley song if necessary...................:)