Solstice

DSC_0164

Summer Solstice

As I lay down the night before – I say to myself  “I’m not getting up at 4am to chase the sunrise, I kinda want to sleep”

I woke at 4am – and I knew that I would get after it – it’s the solstice – I love the solstice

Mankind has loved this day since they figured out what it was – the steady reliable cycle of the sun bringing stability to an unstable world— countless generations paying homage to the spinning of the earth – countless people making what they will of it.

Gods are formed around the mystery of the passage of time. The journey of our birth to our death that spins and moves in a universe of wonder.

I love the solstice. It connects me to bigger things.

I visited my grandmother in England many, many moons ago. I wanted to go to Stonehenge and we went on the solstice – I did not know what that meant – I did not know it was a “thing”.

Since then its stayed with – watching me – checking in on me as I stumble through life.

I remember my grandmother as I drive to chase the light – it’s a big thing to understand that the world will spin – things will flow – and we will go – we can join in the cosmic dance or we can wait it out —- either way the solstice will cycle on and on.

Notes: Lake George NY is close enough to be local for me – There was a woman walking her dog on the beach and nothing else going on in town at sunrise. I didn’t have to edit this photo except for a splash of highlight on the buoy – a quick shake of light – nothing else.  If you wonder how I am — I say — mostly I am ok – I’m not the same- I try to make the most of the days instead of the least of the days —- that is a better way to live.

 

Open Mic

guitar

Signups were at 7, I strolled in at 7 after and was 7 on the list. My name in pencil as a testament to this little car-wash of fear for my soul.

I sat down in a chair next to a person I knew from a past life – he was already drunk  – I used to be his boss – he reminded me that I was his best boss and I was a good guy ~ life takes strange twists and turns. (drunk may be his normal state- he did not look well)

A snarky old guy with a leather hat approached and grabbed his coffee from the table next to me – Oh no, I sat in his seat! I apologized; he snarked back “I’m standing right here!”

This is a great start – my alcoholic ex-coworker drunk off his ass and I’ve pissed off one of the regulars here in this little theater –  Somehow all this is good with me – I mean; the water you swim is the water you swim – but you swim anyway.

We are told that instead of the three songs, we will only do two, due to the large amount of sign-ups— Maybe 11 total? And then go around a second time for one more.

I’ve moved to a new spot in this little theater – away from all the strife at the entrance – I meet another new guy  – he is a drummer, seems to be a good guy.

Let the show begin –

And it did.

By the time it got to me – I was ok with going up on stage for the first time – I had trouble getting my guitar to work  – but the host was very gracious in helping —–

I sang and played “Mississippi Kid” by Lynyrd Skynyrd – My version bears little resemblance to the original – I go straight 12 bar blues on my acoustic guitar – I love the song and the snarling attitude of it – My version is closer to that of Jerry Lee Lewis (but I humbly submit that my performance is just a wisp of smoke compared to the fire of the original “killer”).

I told the audience that it was my first time and I was only good for one tune –

And I did it!

By the time I got to the last verse, I was dancing a bit and enjoying myself.

It won’t be my last

I will be going back.

For a few moments that night – I was the “Mississippi kid”!

 

Notes: I bought a new acoustic guitar last March for my birthday and I play it every day –  (maybe I’ve missed a total of a week if you add all the days I couldn’t play in the last 10 months)

On February 1st (exactly 14 months to the day I lost my wife, for those of you that know me) I stepped on a stage and did an open mic.

It went well – I am not ruining this post with actual video; but that is probably coming!

I did mess with guitar in my earlier life, never anything past the tinkering stage and never complete songs.

And I never tried to sing before.

But, so what?

Life is to live.

Go live.

Question: What would be your song if and when you do (did?) this?

 

 

Where do I stRT?

bighorn22Since you left me or, more accurately: I left you  – Wow – and whoa and wheew – yeaoh = I am here and I am alright.

I feel like I need to just let everyone know that my basicness is okness  – (yeah, I know I am making up words that don’t exist).

How are you? And, I am ok ~ doesn’t come close to the gamut of reflection and metamorphosis of the last few months.

Some new habits:

I meditate everyday – I go to the gym three times a week – I run; 5 Ks now, looking at a half marathon sometime next year. I am stronger mentally and physically. I am a success story in many ways.

With that is also the intense pain that continues to flow at times – maybe not with the complete flooding of the beginning – but all the power is intact.

The difference between sitting next to a rushing river and being in a rushing river.

The river is the same —– you have a different perspective.

You know it is only a couple steps away – — you know you will always hear it and feel it —– but somehow – you are ok.

Am I coming back to WP? I think so – but I can’t say for sure right now.

Still putting myself back together – Come a long way and far to go.

I leave you with a photo of a bighorn sheep I took in July from the Badlands — that is one of the wows! – the Badlands and me — we understand each other.

Hope to write again soon.

Wayne (caveguy)

It keeps me running

wayne - run

A couple weeks ago I did my first 5K! I ran with the kids and it took me almost 34 minutes – but I did it! I’m posting this picture so you can see how I am and what I look like in June of 2016 ~ I have come a long way in the last 7 months – I thank all of you – I don’t want to name names and embarrass anybody but there were some who went above and beyond to reach out to me – this community is so warm and so welcoming. Really, I have no words to describe it.

Beyond that: I meditate everyday – I play guitar and sing (have to play by a fire this week!) – I have ink! – I am heading out to the badlands in a week or so for another trip – I am in therapy (my therapist is a godsend) —– And all this stuff is new — I am becoming something else – I cannot return to where I was.

I am blessed and I am grateful ~ And I run now not to escape myself

I run to become myself

 

Music and Ink…..and blogging

Music and Ink…..and blogging

I woke this morning with full awareness that my mind and spirit were connected, attached to my body that was hurling through space on a giant rock. That rock was spinning in a beautiful dance of gravity playing a part in an endless universe … which may be just a drop in a vast ocean of countless other universes.

Yeah baby, I’m back!

It makes all the mundane connections with people I know seem nothing short of miraculous.– I mean,…  to make “me”— all these weird connections of people, places and things over the eons of time since before we even got to living in the caves – I just think about that — everything had to line up or this “me” that is writing would not be here—- and that goes the same for each person that reads this — and also the same for the lady at the deli that I will let cut in ahead of me because she has two screaming kids and needs to get her maple ham and American cheese.

Which makes the connections that are truly “special” nothing short of divine because ….. I mean, …. What are the chances that you and me have a conversation?

It just causes the brain to ignite and fire countless neurons to not figure out.

You may think that this is a strange —- but I think like this all the time —– and have not thought like this in many weeks.

Because I was not connected.

My mind was in severe pain – my spirit was lost and whirring out of control – and my body seemed to disconnected.

They said I was depressed – I don’t know if that word fits – but I will go with it because it and me were so similar that you could not tell us apart even at a short distance.

So we go to ink –

A thought in my mind – that becomes a sketch (in fact, many sketches before it was right) – that goes into illustrator to become a vector – that sings to me in a perfect riot of frenzied negative space.

boar-final22

 

My mind thinks it – my spirit is at peace with it – the tattoo artist inks it to my body – we are all together again. One happy family that is the trio of the Wayne. I am here – I am validated.

My first tattoo – and already thinking how to add to it.

And as I ran through the chords of “Key to the Highway” last night on my acoustic guitar — I understand what Big Bill Broonzy was saying – I understand the feeling – I understand the blues.

I get it – there are things and feelings that we all share – that are the human condition – It’s part of jamming a spirit in a body and having a mind trying to figure out what to do with it- how to make a way – how to rise above and move forward.

Isn’t that part of why we blog? This need to connect and validate our existence.

I play a lot of guitar and I sing all the time – this is new – but was always there.

I just could not put in the work to access it – I don’t feel like that anymore.

I feel that I have nothing to fear – I feel that I better get whatever is in there out.

Be dammed if it is good or bad or indifferent.

Just get it out!

So I feel better – And the only reason I am writing instead of playing right now is because it is too early and I will wake the kids.

I leave you with a new song that speaks to me – attitude and blues – I need it.

 

 

The – I’m ok but figuring it out post.

The – I’m ok but figuring it out post.

The posts on the Cave are slowing down a bit because I am rebuilding my life….

I am here people and I am writing and sketching, I am a little behind – I may be down to once a week with posts while I catch up with my life.

I have so much to do and I am happy to say I am doing it.

If you see a lag in response or I don’t get to your blogs and visit as much — I will — just be patient – we all run into this blog/life balance issue.

Some good news:

The Night Swimming site where I deal almost 100% with the intimate and heart wrenching subject of cancer and grief is going well – I am writing it out and it is helping me. I am not going to mix the two blogs, most of you don’t want to see that side me, and if it was totally public – I would not feel free enough to share – — so email me for a link if you are brave enough — I thank the few of you that have – it has been good on many levels.

Working out at the Y for the last three months is bringing my physical health back in line –  I am getting my strength and wellness back!

I started some therapy for my mental health – I am happy to say I carry a lighter mind. To talk fully with no restrictions to someone who is legally bound not to share — I can’t express how 3 years of cancer and losing a soulmate almost requires that you do this. If this is you — do not walk to get help — run.

Spiritually, I am in a state of reflection and expansion – I am not ruling anything out as I keep my heart and my mind open. I am Christian but I will be honest and tell you that I leaned heavily on Buddhism during my wife’s illness. Am I getting an orange robe and shaving my head? No, not yet – but universal truth is universal truth and close mindedness is the route of much evil in this world. When you are pushing around a dying wife in a wheelchair, you take and do whatever you can to help, you do not check the label on gifts of love before you open them. Love is love. Truth is truth. Light is light.

My house is falling apart and needs much work – that must start soon.

My past job is done, right now I have no work to go to. I have a new job lined up for Jan of 2017 – I may not go back to a “real” job until then. Is this a problem?  No, not at all.

And lastly – I bought myself a new acoustic guitar and started playing a little — I’m not terrible – I am not going to be a rock star but, so what! – it gives me pleasure – it lifts my soul.

This is where I am – And now – some music.

Painting Fiction Challenge

Chambered Nautilus
Chambered Nautilus  by Andrew Wyeth

 

Perfect Spirals

Stephanie is safe –  enclosed –  bathed by the morning sun.

A new day.

“How I got here doesn’t matter”

She tells herself and keeps telling herself to make it sink in.

“What they did can’t take anymore more of me”

“I can’t let those bastards do their work”

She knows it’s over …. she remains …. they are gone – well at least for 7- 10 years. She was hoping for more – she was hoping for a lightning bolt to rip through the courtroom and fry them right there —- take all the pain away —- singe them to pieces – until only a remnant of those evil smirking lips remain — Yeah, …  leave those smoldering relics on the floor so they can be stomped – “I am Alice taking back my Wonderland and you — you evil Cheshire cat lips — you are crushed back into the darkness from whence you came”.

“A new life, my life.”

She looks at her nautilus shell from happier days. A shell she found in the fresh wash of the waning tide on a faraway island.  The spiral shape that once surrounded a living thing – Maybe everything is a spiral? – maybe that is how it works. One thing builds on another and another in a perfect harmony that only takes full shape in the end. You just keep living and you just keep trying. None of us knows what will be for us – we are all too caught up to see.

That sun lights her face. There is hope. Out there are countless failures and victories waiting for her. Beckoning her to move forward.

Our star in our own little corner of this great spiraling galaxy. This giant Milky Way turning and turning while it plays its part in the greater scheme of time and space.

The only thing it doesn’t do is go backwards.

“Maybe how I got here does matter?”

Countless shells on countless beaches spread through eons and eons – and countless scumbags doing damage to countless victims over and over and over.

Stephanie thinks about that and it does sink in — we all become shells — we all become used packages of our souls. Every single one of us.

No exceptions.

So you make amends the best you can – you do what you have to put it behind you – if the only way forward is to forgive, you may even have to do that —— forgive your god for allowing such vermin to be produced and forgive the perps themselves for they have no conception of the damage they do.

One day they will understand and one day it will all make sense. A perfect spiral of symmetry where you thought only chaos dwelt.

Shells and galaxies alike – turning and struggling – gravity and fire burning and pulling – ocean currents – swirling tides flowing back and forth.

It somehow works out.

 

 

Notes: This is my first attempt at writing fiction – It went much deeper and darker than I would have imagined — but then again — I don’t know how it goes, that is the beauty of swimming in different water and trying new things. 

Any comments — good, bad, or indifferent really appreciated on this post.

Thank you my friends