Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Book For The Road

     It seems the days--the centuries--of the book are numbered. Facebook, Twitter, et al, increasingly rule. Kindle and its ilk digitalize the written word, yet compromise the contemplative heart of reading in the process. But I don't believe that the choice of holing up and getting lost in a real, live, actual, compelling book can ever be replaced. It's an activity as essential to our complete humanity as breathing.

                            A BOOK

    In my vision the Angel's always holding a book with the left hand    pressing it close to the heart    by this I know a book is more than simply a human invention    it's an eternal archetype    a potent symbol for wisdom teaching    the computer can't replace it    the computer thrusts me out into the hustle and distraction of the marketplace -- I'm a click away from a billion seductions!    but the right book spirits me off to another world

    inside me there's a special breathing space    a watchful and listening solitude    high up on this inner mountain nestles a secluded meadow where I drink from an icy cold and crystal clear stream    here is my secret haven for reading    the right book not only teaches and inspires me    it's an enlightening guide sent to lead me back to my own boundlessness    the right book distills a bracing elixer for my soul

    I don't think we'll stay fully human if we abandon the palpable book    a book of real pages we can turn with our hand    a book of a certain heft and feel -- one we can also see and taste and smell    a book we can carry off to a private room or tote into the deepest woods    if we lose the intimate companionship of great books we lose more than just their enthralling wisdom    we lose an irreplaceable part of ourselves


     Whether we realize it or not, we're all walking on a certain road--the road of our destiny, a road that never ends. We don't really have a choice about this. But everything depends on our growing consciousness of the journey!

                          THIS ROAD

    this road I walk along    sometimes it's wide other times it's narrow    sometimes it's crowded other times it's solitary    sometimes it's easy other times it's hard    yet always I'm walking on some road    coming from one place and going to another    now and then I stop and rest for a while    here or there I wish I could stay    but then a dawn breaks which seems to widen outward forever    and I know I must walk on

    this road stretches back before I was born    it leads forward beyond when I will die    it's as new as my breath    as old as my blood     as primal as my bones    meeting a stranger on this road we might pass without a word    or decide to walk together for just a day or even a lifetime    parting on this road can hurt like hell    it's better to stare at the horizon and keep walking    it's better not to turn around

    this road sometimes crosses other roads    then I stop and wait and ponder    which way should I go?    each direction's equally unknown    if I veer left there could be danger    but if I pivot right it might be worse    yet marching straight ahead is no sure thing either    when there's not even a signpost to guide me I do what I always do    I listen for the still small voice within    I follow the compass needle of my soul


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