Browse Category: Prayers


From Elation to Sorrow

We travelled and camped in far-Northern New Mexico and Southern Colorado last week and it was just spectacular. I have finally caught (and released) my first wild Cutthroat Trout in upper Costilla Creek; and I did it with a hand-line. No need for a fancy fly-rig, which I would likely not handle well on such a narrow stream.

It got really cold where we camped last Thursday above 9,000 feet. It even snowed that afternoon as we were making camp.

Surprisingly I was able to carry & chop wood at that elevation, as well as take a couple good long walks.

Unfortunately we got back to Bernalillo and just a couple days later my partner-in-crime “Mister Dog” died in my lap from a stroke as we rushed him to the dog hospital. We think he had a few small strokes, that presented as perhaps a problem with his spine; but the second time we took him to his local doctor she said, “There’s something worse going on here and you need to get him to the ER right away.” It was too late, though. The ER told me he’d been dead ten minutes when I brought him in.

As if that wasn’t enough, my daughter-in-law contacted us to say my oldest son had been a week in ICU struggling with a rare blood disorder – a result of his double-knee surgery nearly 2 years ago – that’s causing blood clots to erupt all over his body and in vital organs. He now has two large clots in his lungs and one in his brain.
This is not a survivable disorder. Doctors have fought it for almost a year and determined last week there are no more options; aside from keeping him comfortable. He’s already developed such a high tolerance to the opioid drugs they are using heavy doses of Fentanyl, an evil drug that’s over 100 times more potent than straight hospital-grade Morphine and nearly 200 times the strength of street-grade Heroin. The pain in his head is evidently intense but the disorder also causes shingles, extreme discomfort, and sloughing of skin.

He’s so embarrassed for how he looks he didn’t want me to go see him. But I am the father and he is the son. Had to remind him of that and remind him I’ve seen much much worse.

I saw my Cardiologist this morning, who gave me strict warnings about the stress in my family’s situation. Arrgh. People complain about my smokin’ so I stop smokin’. They bitch about me drinkin’ so I stop drinkin’. They tell me to exercise and clean up my diet, so I’m back to running a mile on the treadmill and eating no salt and no foods high in LDL cholesterol. It never ends.

At least I’m 116-days sober and well-entrenched with my homegroup, sponsor and therapist. I’ve got excellent support.

Tomorrow I will drive to Lubbock and see my boy. Not sure how long I will be there or how I will pay for a long-time stay; but he and his little family need me there.

There’s a bit of irony, here, because this blood disorder has some cancer-like behavior & characteristics. Both of my sons and their mother lived a long time in the community of Sanderson, which had made a bad settlement deal with Southern Pacific Railroad over the contamination of water wells with diesel, benzene, and other chemicals. My boy’s mother died from Leukemia last Summer and both my boys have had cancer (testicular and tumors in the bladder). A high percentage of longtime residents of the community have died from different types of cancer.

When it rains it fucking pours. Damnit. I’m gonna need to go sit still in the Southern desert for a month after all this trauma.

Land of the Golden Subaru

If you want to spend time in a community filled with bitter middle-aged divorced women, then you definitely should go live in Taos NM.  For that matter, throw in the phreaks and antisocial people of the West Mesa – and the “Earthship People” near Tres Piedras – and I guarantee you will have made your recipe for isolation and quiet disdain.

If that Northern New Mexican woman (likely displaced from the US Northeast) is worrisome, though, just watch for the Subaru!  The most despicable, self-centered, bitter and hostile women in Northern New Mexico *all* drive cars from Subaru.  Santa Fe is worse than Taos, but not by much.

Here’s the acid test.  Go walk around on a weekday afternoon in Cid’s grocery store in Taos.  If you’re the least bit sensitive, you will immediately recognize the high level of anxiety in the store – and the high number of middle-aged divorced women.  When you’ve gotten to the point of “over saturation”, pay your bill and go out in the parking lot.  Half the vehicles there are from Subaru.

Did you know the 4-cyl Subaru engine, used in all their passenger cars from the 1970s to the most recent models, is the exact same engine Subaru built for the Kamikaze aircraft used at Pearl Harbor???

Same engine, different aggressors.  No wonder there are so many angry American women driving cars from Subaru.

I just bought a very old Chevy “project car” with my new oil & gas contract, but I love love love my Buick!!!




No political solution

Our nation is clearly in crisis; but if you think there’s a political cause, or a political solution, for this crisis you are a fool.

We’ve become a broken, self-centered, society of people.  We care far less for our neighbors than we do for ourselves.

Happiness, and a collective recovery of our empathy and compassion, are an inside job.  No amount of political hyjinx will ever fix what is broken in us.  We have to do this ourselves, and we have to do it in harmony and congruence with our neighbors.


Art and the Internal Wah

I have noticed/learned, over the last ten months, there really is a two-way connection between my internal basic nature and the physical act of painting/creating.

I am a sensitive, emotional and vulnerable soul.  But the more I reveal those traits to (most of) the people around me, the more those traits can be exploited by others.  I have noticed, though, times when those traits were so very strong I had no choice but to paint & create.

So here’s the odd correlation!

I was not particularly sensitive or out of sorts last Spring.  Yet, almost out of nowhere, I suddenly resumed painting in March.  By the end of June I’d painted the best canvas I’ve ever done.

I became more and more emotional, though, and more and more sensitive/vulnerable as I swam down to the more intimate levels of my creativity.

Attaining that depth of spirit, that level of intimacy & vulnerability, was a first for me – and by late July I’d completed two of the best paintings I’ve ever made.

But the cost of becoming that sensitive and vulnerable, within the context of my everyday life with my partner, nearly ruined me.  I simply became too emotional, too (hyper)sensitive, and too vulnerable.

I know I must force myself to paint again, and to accept less than perfect so long as I am painting; but I doubt I will ever again be able to expose that internal/emotional “artist in me” vulnerability to another person.

I want to get back to that place where I feel safe, vulnerable, wanted and un-judged; because I am stunned by the art I make in such an environment.  THAT depth of vulnerability and freedom, when I just let the paint show me, brings something new into the world.  It’s something that is, occasionally, truly beautiful and unique.

But now I’m stuck.  I may never ever get back to that place where I was in Arroyo Hondo NM, with Mia and her dogs, in late June when life was better than it’s ever been.  Those mornings camping on the Rio Costilla with such a gorgeous partner will never be again.  It will be amazing if I can open another tube of paint…

God – let Mia have all the happiness, health and prosperity I would ever want for myself.  Given a choice between Mia and myself, please always choose Mia before me.  May thy will be done always, Amen.