Saturday, December 20, 2014

When I Faltered on the Trail

The dog and I go out at 2 a.m. and right away the stars demand that I stop thinking and worship them. They are like cats, or certain women I've known. And what can you do but fall to your knees? Honestly, it's a relief sometimes to set aside my inherent wordiness and rest a little in the relative silence. How many times do I have to write "kiss her where she is softest" before I remember it's way more fun and productive to just shut up and go down on her? When I think of all the motels I've stayed in, and all the hostels, and all the train stations and park benches . . . After a while you stop thinking in terms of who's naked and who's not and just fantasize about a good night's sleep. Jeremiah asks about certain scratches and gouges on my guitar - the one he's not allowed to play for now - and they all have a story, some of which I can't tell him yet. Or am I just not ready to remember? I think about that near the bottom of the hill, listening to the brook, hoping I don't fall going back like I did the other day. I made some promises in Ireland, I left a couple of photographs in France. "When's the last time you played a Woody Guthrie song sober?" There was always something special under the blankets, even if the blankets were thin and wet with dew. It was nice to see the stars after and it still is, even without the solace of whiskey. When I write, the dog curls up next to me. What happened was a long time ago the moon swallowed me whole. What happened was a black bear said I could follow him and when I faltered on the trail, he waited. I left the church but stole the altar and gave it away to anyone who would listen, the only way I know. Sentence by sentence, song by song, poem by intimate poem. You're never more alone than in starlight, my dear. This one is for you, again.


  1. I love how your humanness dances with your divinity in these paragraphs, in this paragraph, Sean.

    Read this morning how our relationship with God is best described as a disciplined wildness, a dangerous that resonates when I read your words here.

    Both earthy and sublime. This gift...


  2. oh gosh . . . . thank you . . . I am exhausted lately for a number of reasons and I think my ordinary editorial instincts are somewhat in abeyance . . . I am writing at 3 a.m. and then looking it again after the sun rises thinking, did I really say that? Like Forster, here paraphrased: "how do I know what I think until I see what I say?" And then it's all a memory anyway . . . How hard heaven must be for editors :) ! I read part of your comment a little backwards: "A dangerous wildness, a disciplined love" and thought: oh yes, I want to be that there . . .