Summer Words

Another rain-cool summer day near the ocean. I cannot tell if I am heated or chilled, because I go by the look of the sky, and the sky today seems cool, while the air feels warm. What little sun beats through the filtering clouds gives my skin a slight sting. I should be happy with this kind of weather, since I have lately seen far worse. I have been in the southeastern California desert half of this past June, where daily highs kept my spirit ever low from wanting to go out and participate in sunny events.

I swam my full 1300 yards today, 52 lengths of the 25-yard pool, where I dwell many hours in staring down the long black tile line on the bottom. These arms can still kick through the water pretty good, but my old tired legs seem to want to only drag along behind for the ride, like cans tied to the rear bumper of a car carrying newlyweds. I have been slow getting to the pool and finding my rhythm and spirit, a sort of sleepiness of the soul that begs to be awakened. But today that magic energy found its excitement and discovery in my old body and chose to engage in activity.

As I quit reading for awhile, I also quit writing. I cannot say that I was particularly burned out, but maybe disinterested in my own thoughts, wanting, instead, to wait for something outside of my own sluggard self to speak to me in an undeniable fashion; some other form of intelligence in the universe besides my own that had some urgent message it wished conveyed through my keyboard-mind combination. Maybe this is that message, leaking out through my fingertips. Maybe this is the voice that wishes to be a poem rather than just another journal entry among so many that have inhabited my consciousness all of these years.

It is in the early evening that I sit here to type. I have been on my feet or in that blue pool for an extra hour or two today, and still my energy begs of me that I do more. I listened to a reading on the internet of Federico Garcia Lorca’s “Lament For Ignatio Sanchez Mejias”. The first time I read that poem on my own I had no idea what it meant, but immediately fell in love with it and with Lorca. Okay, so I still don’t exactly understand it, as with many poems, but it has a rhythm and strange combination of words and ideas that must appeal to everyone who is exposed to it. Now I know a little more about the poem and about Lorca, but it is one of those little fascinating treasures that fills my mind with wonder and an awkward delight.

The few summer sprinkles I have seen come out of the heavens today seem to promise an end to this long California drought. All the words I have written these past few years are part of that drought. They lay on flattened, empty, forgotten web pages in the storage banks of idle computers, and everyone, even me, has a tough time pulling them up, and an even tougher time bringing the original intent of them back to life. How much of what we look at and fill our minds with every day must be just like that. Even though writing looks like life and has some of the fascination of living, will any journal entry, any splendid web page, transform and become a living entity that carries forth into new instantiations? I would say probably only very few.

So I peck a little longer here this July evening before sundown, while this living stream of thought works its way through me and around me, looking for a  place to call its own, looking for a place to have a life outside of my control and jurisdiction. The thoughts will sit here inside me another day or two, sifting about and trying to find where they might fit into a larger category, and then, like so much else that passes through me with the pretense of being alive and fruitful, will become assigned its own unique URL in a predictably deadly web trap of obsolescence.

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2 Responses to Summer Words

  1. Irene Bean says:

    Fifty-two lengths! Good heavens!

    I’m kinda-sorta a do-do when it comes to poems – I’m a Dr. Seuss type of person. Yet I enjoy poetry. I only have about 25 books of poetry, but I bet that’s more than most households. I like poetry but rarely understand it. It’s like going to the opera and swooning for two hours – not understanding one single word, yet returning home besotted.

    I spent a huge chunk of time printing my journal entries and miscellaneous essays, and cataloged them by year in binders. My children are glad I’ve done this. They like my journals, feel the connection. My writing tends to be conversational.

    Keep on pecking. You have important thoughts that you peck quite beautifully. Sometimes I think I continue to peck because it shouts to the world that I’m still here. 🙂

    I’m so gigantically grateful you’re still here too.



    • jurnul says:

      Hi Reenie!
      Thanks for the response. Glad to see that you are still ticking!
      I have always like a few poets, those I could understand, but, like you, thought much of it to be unintelligible. But some are, and some of those who are not are simply fun and energizing to read anyhow. Same is true of a lot of visual art that looks like nothing at all in this world, but is still inspiring to view.
      Glad to hear that you have put your journal into some order. Your conversational writing is wonderful!


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