My thoughts about culture and our present conditions. As Dianne Moore says in Learning to Love a Wounded World, "This requires a willingness to feel everything…. the horror and the beauty of what is here…. the fear and the Love.”

Jacques, my best friend

Jacques was born six years ago today, March 4. 

Today I am burying him.

He collapsed and died suddenly last night.  He’d come down with a killer virus a few days ago. (edit: I now know it was a bacteria called leptospirosis that’s recently come to the Willipa Watershed.  I had the wrong vet, the other vet knew and knew enough to make sure her animal clients got a vaccine, so the tragedy of this loss is multiplied by a veteranarian’s lack of professional concern for his role in the community, because the information was out there for him to share with us.  Jacques last got his shots just three months before he died.  I should have been warned.)  

I wrote things about the joy of Jacques and they are precious to me.  They
were moments of awakening.  This too is that moment.  As I process through I realize this is not about me, not even this notion I lost my best friend.  What’s irrevocably gone is the joy of life he shared and my ability to share that with him, to continue to support him in his daily adventures on our walks in the woods.  I know he had much more to live and I’m sorry for him he can’t do what he loves.  It’s trivial that I can’t be a part of that ever again.

Jacques made many friends, and he would have made more if he could have.  Even some who didn’t much like dogs loved his spirit, his gentle exuberant presence.  He could fill the whole outdoors with his love of life.  He was my ambassador of good will where ever we went.

Facing pain
directly with full awareness, not trying to dodge, brings about some of
those richest-of-moments experiences.  Sadness is the true essence of life and not to be
avoided.  Life is ephemeral.  Without sadness there is no treasure.

I give Jacques the gift of my sadness from the depths of my heart.  I treasure our friendship.  It does not die.

Crazy Dog

not that I intend to be contrary

It’s just that

Aside from being cursed with this not-wrapped-too-tight mind

Aside from being born under the sign of Libra

                     With a compulsion to keep everything balanced

I  also was born riding my horse backwards

So, if I was a Cheyenne warrior

                       And in some small diluted part of my past I … well

I’d be a Contrary

As anyone can see it still runs through my family

We do many things backwards

Some days even sanity

So I just don’t agree with your assessment of my friends

And I don’t have a clue to your notion of community

                        If we can’t be ourselves

Then to say I understand what you are talking about …

well that’s just meaningless

….. And that’s why I have my friend Crazy Dog!

–Ren, December, 2006


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