Strange awakening

Grief strengthens the spirit.

Grief strengthens the spirit. Lighter color

If you live alone long enough, without the woman who made you a man, you become your own man again. The man you were when you traveled 10,000 miles on a cargo ship to get here. The man you were at twenty years old when you lived alone in a three-story walkup on 49th Street.

That man again. Time has made you decades older. Physically there has been some damage, but the mind and the spirit are still strong. They weakened to their lowest level when the woman who made you a man died. The woman who got you through an unbearable loss that you bore because she made you a man and then one day four days before Christmas you came home without her—to the same warm house—

and she was in a cold basement morgue.

That was the most unbearable loss of all—

and you didn’t have her to get you through it.

You wandered around the warm cold house in a drunken haze, calling her name, screaming, crying, you sat in the dead living room night after night smoking and drinking in an 80-proof daze, the loaded rifle not far away—

but you never used it—why?—why in the name of God or the godless name of nothingness didn’t you use it? For three years and six months you took it out of the closet and felt its weight and admired its beauty and craftsmanship and checked the bullet in the chamber, the bullet that would blow your brain to kingdom come—

but you never used it.

And then one morning, you can’t explain it, nothing led up to it, nothing foreshadowed it, no action or dream foretold it, you woke up and you felt strangely stronger. Nothing outwardly had changed. The cat was sleeping on the end of the bed, the day stretched before you with the same emptiness that was now years in the making—

but you were stronger.

You were your own man again. That young man, decades older now, in the bare-boards room on 49th Street.

If you believed in miracles you would call this a miracle. You were as alone as ever, but you weren’t alone. Grief strengthens the spirit.

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Outosego in tough battle


A dear friend to so many in the blogosphere is in the battle of a lifetime.

I speak of Outosego, as he is known to thousands of bloggers, a master craftsman in the art of blog design, and a genuine friend to those he has entertained, helped and encouraged.

He publishes our posts on his Flipboard magazine, and on social media sites. He also creates Flipboard magazines for many individuals. He is a champion for all bloggers.

Outosego is a gentleman who always addresses his many followers as “Dear.” The debonair logo he uses to identify his blog is that of the soulful troubadour Leonard Cohen, a perfect symbol for the sensitive artistry of Outosego.

He never divulged his real name. Some of us know his name, but mainly I believe he wants to remain the anonymous Outosego.

He is of Greek heritage. The way I understand it, and please correct me if I’m wrong, the word outos in his native Greek language means thyself, and ego means I am, thus, I am thyself, or more colloquially, This is who I am.

And this is who he is: a wonderful humanitarian who is currently battling extreme pain and a tremendous physical challenge to become well again.

His last post, on, on April 9, 2020, concluded with these well wishes for his followers:

Thank you, ethereal friends, for visiting my living room, for liking and commenting on Outosego. Take care yourselves. Take care your family and friends.

The post included a song by Leonard Cohen called, ‘Waiting for the Miracle.’

For all the believers in this global, ethereal community, pray for him to get better; and for all the non-believers, send out as much positive psychic energy as you can muster.

As it is, at this time, he needs a miracle. But the great religious writer, the late C.S. Lewis, believed in miracles, as do, I’m sure, many Christians in this World Wide Web of communication and camaraderie — which, when you think about it, is a miracle in itself.

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A layman’s guide to God

This guy I know said to me that if he could find God he thinks he would find his wife.

He wasn’t referring to the God of Sunday School and the God of organized and disorganized religion — a divine being surrounded by bright light who lives in a magical place called Heaven.

By God he meant the mystery behind the universe.

The word God is a paltry three-letter inadequacy for the universe. The mathematical precision alone that keeps it all together, spinning and constantly moving at unbelievable speeds is miraculous. One centimeter off and KARRROOM!

This led me to thinking that God needs a more spectacular name. Take the word supernatural. That’s an impressive word. But God and the supernatural are not synonymous, because God also includes the natural world — the earth and the oceans and mountains and cities and houses and people and animals, everything we see around us with our available senses, the senses that currently are the only ones available to us.

But in the supernatural word, other senses must come into play, senses we aren’t yet aware of. There may be living people who have some supernatural sense, or think they do. But I think only in death does the supernatural world, that otherworldly dimension possibly become available to us and we become part of it, part of the universe, part of the miracle.

Unbelievers will say this sounds like the same pie-in-the-sky nonsense as the God in Heaven surrounded by divine light. Certainly, it requires the same faith or suspension of disbelief.

Faith carries a heavy burden for a five-letter word. The word for God should at least have five letters. Miracle has seven.

Seven. Now we’re getting somewhere. In Biblical studies, seven is the number of “completeness and perfection.”

The Bible itself was originally divided into seven parts: the law, the prophets, the writings or psalms, the gospels and acts, the general epistles, the epistles of Paul, and the book of Revelation. The total number of originally inspired books was forty-nine — seven times seven.

That works for me. God is the Miracle. The Miracle of the universe. If we become part of that when we die, we find the undead.

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