Knowing, Watching, Waiting

Grace Cathedral Labyrinth, San Francisco, CA.

Knowing, Waiting, Watching

Oh you know I want to believe
in something more
than me or you.
I want to believe in something,
more than us.

But this thing called religion.
Well I’m not sure I trust
all it’s made up to be.

I’ve said it once
and I’ll say it once more…
Not sure God entered through
any church door.

But don’t slam that door on me.
I’ve been wrong so many times before.
Or maybe the door is open wide,
so vast it’s unseen.
As if we’ve walked in and out,
and out and in not even knowing it.
And God’s unknown too…

Or maybe the door only exits
as an opening to the outside world,
where God’s knowing, watching and waiting.

Gregory Zeorlin 10/14/2016 @ 10:43am.
Inside Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, CA

 

Art Isn’t a Shelter

Art, regardless of its form, is dead. Art has always been dead. The romanticized view of art includes giving art a soul, a spirit or even an unexplained energy.  But art is dead, has no pulse and is cold. Art is a concept, a thing, a string of words, musical notes, an inanimate object, a product sold in the art market, a commodity.  I’ve kept a studio practice for over 30 years and this idea of lifeless art is fairly new for me and a little unsettling if I only stay on the surface.

Clouds For Lease.

Clouds For Lease.

But if I dig below the surface this lifeless thing called ART does enhance life.  It can introduce us to a range of thoughts and emotions. However we should not tag the actual emotions or feelings to art. Tag them to ourselves.  This is what art does…It’s a door that we choose to open to get access to our emotions, feelings and ways of seeing.  Passage through this door is often a luxury. We wouldn’t pass though the art door if we were seeking food or shelter. Art does not feed us. Art is not food. Art is not a shelter.

Finally, I note the coldness of art…the lack of a pulse. Art is not alive. Even dancing human bodies are only a series of motions that end.  Those artists who sacrifice all for their art…forgoing marriages, children and strong commitments to other people end up alone. They become just another notation in an art history book or the maker of some thing in a private or public collection. They create a void in their lives that art cannot fill.

I am an artist. I make things and write poetry (www.ZeorlinArt.com) but none of it has a soul. I am also a husband and father…and it is this part of my life that fills my heart and soul.

This Place

Words are words and poems are poems regardless if they’re written by a known poet or someone unknown who uses words to record ideas. After all, we choose words and arranged them to serve our needs.  Is this a disclaimer before posting a poem? No. Just an acknowledgment to those out there who have a similar thought about writing.  Of course, most of those “out there” are imaginary since so few will ever read this post. Hello, out there. 🙂  Share this poem if you wish. Thank you.

 

This Place

The world is a wondrous place,
a ponderous place too.
We humans push and pull in races
to gain, dominate and subdue.

The world could be a perfect place,
but only if there was no humans race.
We’re here today and gone tomorrow
regardless if we pray, beg, steal or borrow.

So we’ve made the world imperfect,
imposed our will against nature’s design.
Call this human nature,
we’re animals of chaos, order, logic and magic.

The world is not a perfect place or tragic,
it is the only place we can be.
We could race away in a space rocket
but we’d return, eventually.

We’ve yet to find a way
to permanently break away
from this place we’ve damaged
intentionally and so haphazardly.

In pursuit of more, forever more
we have made the world a lesser place.
But it’s not too late to stop blaming others
for the holes in our bodies and minds.

We’re animals in cages.
We’re animals in pens.
We’ve worn a path along the fence that keeps us in.
We’re sickened and enraged by eating the news.

We don’t know if we should scream or howl.
Some scratch and bite anyone in reach.
We’re bruised even when no blue shows on our skin,
the swelling still harms every soul.

No one knows the answer.
There is no one answer,
only multiple ways of seeking to comprehend
the ways of being human from birth until our end.

The world is a wondrous place,
a ponderous place too.
The earth could’ve been a perfect place,
(but such a lonely place) without we animals
of chaos, order, logic and magic!

 
Gregory Zeorlin 7/18/2016 @ 9:14am

Noise

Well, noise….Sometimes you have to make a little. But you must know when to stop, too.

listen to the crow sing

listen to the crow sing

Imaginary Readers

If it was not for you, my imaginary readers, then I would be writing for invisible ones. And invisible readers are even harder to reach than imaginary ones. Or, at least that’s what my imaginary friends tell me…

Photograph. Gregory Zeorlin

Photograph. Gregory Zeorlin

The beauty of a public disclosure of a journal writing effort is the fact I would write my thoughts regardless if anyone reads them. So, why post this ramble to the public? Because there are many real people out there who have similar thoughts.  We all have the same bones, as the photograph with the post implies (for those who don’t mind thinking a little abstractly). So the same things which motivate one person to write a poem also prompts another to seek out a poem to read.

So, now and then, a real person reads what I write. I hope those encounters with my words affirm, entertain, challenge or confound such people from time to time.

Be well. Good day…whether you are somewhere in the real or imaginary worlds.  🙂

Good Messy Living

There are spots where I live which encourage conversations. The screened porch is one of those places. And even though I have not left home, the porch is a neutral zone where I can momentarily suspend some of the mundane domestic tasks which fill a day and night. I sit out there by myself, or with my wife, or with a few friends and let words take us somewhere that is not planned out. Or, I enjoy sitting in silence.

Most of us have over-planned days.  We do what must be done so we can eat, have a place to sleep, something to drive and pay taxes. If we kept life this simple, we wouldn’t succumb to well planned marketing that confounds our waking hours. (But some toys are great).  Our physical, mental and spiritual homes become crowded as we trip over various types of chaos. Some of you are better than me at disguising states of disorder but everyone makes a mess in life. There is always some spot that becomes undone or neglected.

My yard has places that are gradually going wild. A couple of lawn chairs placed by a fire pit in the fall manage to become props for wildflowers in the spring. Letting nature take its course can have unexpected rewards. While I could strive for a patch of deep green St. Augustine grass it would not compare to some rogue asters and other wildflowers coming to take over. So that spot in the yard goes untouched by the lawn mower until everything has gone to seed.

052.jpg web

Sometimes the seeds from such places generate weedy wordy blog posts like this one or poetry or even songs. And this is why it is good accept some disorder in everyday life.  Of course, taking this point of view to the extreme has few benefits. So I’ll take the middle unkempt ground…nothing’s perfect but life is good anyway.

Faster Map Application

Since I write poetry frequently and have done so for decades I can now flip back through the years and find old poems written on this date. So if I keep writing poetry, eventually there will be a poem for every day of the year. And once that happens, I will not need to write a poem again for the rest of my life. So would I really do this? Hmmm. What do you think?

Faster Map Application

I want to be
your packaged deal
your take-out meal
I want to be
remotely controlled
a driver-less wheel

I need to follow
some map of life
beamed straight down
from Google or God
depending on which One
is faster.

4/24/2014 11:05 am

Click here to read other poems I’ve written. Oh, and share this poem if you wish.