The Examined Life

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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Just On Loan

Everything I have is borrowed. All I have is just on loan. I have no desire to possess, to indenture, or to own.

I share with you the sky, the sun, the ocean and the earth. I offer only what is truly mine, my presence, my love, my time, for all they’re worth.

My soul, it has been spoken for, ‘twas never mine to give. One day it will return to whence it came, forever there to live.

As I take your hand, I acknowledge we are One. Thereby, we create our world, but we will have just begun.

You can cage the Songbird, but not the song. You can hold a moonbeam in your hand, but not for long.

I have no desire to own your soul; what would I do with two? Give me your love and share your heart, that’s all there is to do.

One day I will turn in this body, well used and well worn, and meet you on the other side again, re-born.

Holding Alice

I had a friend named Tom many years ago. He and I used to just hang out and talk. It was the 60’s and people did that then. Tom had a two room flat with a shared bathroom. I would often talk for hours with Tom reclining on his bed and me sitting in and old cloth easy chair with ragged arms. There was something welcoming about Tom that I never really tried to put my finger on. We were both just kids but we felt like we were “king of the world” then.

One day I was visiting and talking with Tom and a knock came at the door. It was a girl about our age or younger. She was petite with a round face and dimples. She had shoulder length hair with beautiful curls that hung down in ringlets.

She said not a word but it was obvious she and Tom were acquainted. Without a greeting or introduction Tom lay back down on the bed and she lay beside him with her head on his chest and her face almost obscured by her chestnut brown curls.

I was surprised when Tom restarted the conversation exactly where we had left off without verbally acknowledging his additional guest. We continued to talk for nearly an hour as she lay there in Tom’s arms. Then, as abruptly as she had arrived, she got up and left without a word.

Of course I was filled with curiosity but had been too uncomfortable to ask. “Who was that and what did she want?” I asked as Tom shut the door behind her. “Oh, that was Alice, she came to be held.” Tom always had a succinct way of describing things and I knew there was no point in further probing.

I have long lost track of Tom and I don’t remember ever seeing Alice again but every once in a while I think about that day when Alice came to be held. I had come for conversation and Alice had come to be held. Sometimes things are just that simple.