At Christian Pollution and here in Christian Pollution Exclusive we have found that we are most definitely NOT the enemies of Spiritual thinking — only of narrow-minded, Christian Nationalist Idiocy and Proselytizing
Exits and Entrances, not an apology exactly, but . . .
When an artist friend talking to me about her work suggests that, “There’s always an exit in my work . . . a place to escape.” I could see what she meant —
In each of her paintings: the small alley, the doorway box, a crease in a landscape offering a way forward, the light moment in the dark or its opposite:
Escape what? I wondered.
Then I thought about myself, why be coy or play stupid —
Escape all of it, of course:
The longing stares of those we love who are disappointed at our falling short of loving them in return . . . enough.
The hurt, simple or complex, or both —
Heartbreaks un-avoided and those not — always an exit, a corridor to escape the pain we feel and the pain we cause.
And from those hallowed moments, both the moments we recognize and those invisible to us — (“What’d I say . . . . What? What? What’d I do?”)
Light and darkness, there are always exits.
The Buddhists say we have two doors, the one we come in through (birth) and the one we go out of (death).
Trouble is, maybe it really is that simple.
I mean, what if they’re right?
We dress up in wedding gowns, silk ties, corsages, and French scents — We attend costumes balls, go to work in three-piece suits.
We buy the newest athletic shoes, cell phones, confectionary delights, flat screens, plasma screens, Plasma vials, doggy treats, everything . . .
. . . everywhere, all the time . . .
Fresh flowers for the table, a frozen turkey in the sink, all of it.
We accept, offer, refuse, wish for, ignore, a kiss goodnight —
We frown at that tailgating asshole. We smother our insides with butter and cream and our home’s walls with primary colors, reds too bright to touch, blues too sad to caress, pastels too, and of course, Linen, Sail-Cloth, robin-egg blue.
And we hide in snappy music, or sappy music, marches, waltzes, hip-hop violence, and screeching vocals.
All of this, all of these, all the while knowing, or at least suspecting, that there are only these two doors, one entrance, and one exit.
But stop a second, seriously, STOP.
There is no ‘we’ in all of this.
There is an ‘I’ and there is a ‘you’. You and I have it within ourselves together, maybe, but almost certainly within me and within you to own our entrances and our exits.
Not the first (our births), usually not the last (our deaths), but all of those entrances and exits in between.
Entrances are always lovely, except for when they aren’t.
But for now, let’s look at exits, mine include, (but are hardly limited to, my God I have so many!): But taking just one (category) I have to own multiple divorces. And with each divorce saying goodbye as I exit to a woman once loved maybe still loved, no definitely STILL loved . . .
. . . but not in that way anymore and needing this goodbye to cover her and her siblings, her mother, our dog(s), our coffee cups, some of my books (“Just keep ’em or thrown ’em out I don’t care”).
Okay, and here’s another kicker, each divorce means exiting an entire life, leaving all that love, laughter, anger, hurt, resentment, forgiveness, hope, and hopelessness, exiting it all with a “Goodbye.”
This is much like thinking I can even the score after someone slaves to prepare a feast for seven hours (not counting buying the food, cleaning the house, setting the table, picking the music, arranging the flowers — ) a feast that I eat in twenty minutes and exit with a simple, “Thanks, that was great.”
So much loss, so much to try and forget or remember or both. So much to learn and to unlearn as I exit.
“There is always an exit in my work — a place to escape.”
Yes, perhaps for you. But maybe not so much for me. Yes, there are always exits.
But for me it turns out, there aren’t always escapes.