Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Pass the potato salad at the Picnic of Chaos

It is almost banal to say so yet it needs to be stressed continually: all is creation, all is change, all is flux, all is metamorphosis.
Henry Miller in Of Art and the Future

Once again, Brain Pickings and Literary Jukebox boil it down to the bones.  Flux, we keep meeting like this.

My dreaming last night/this morning was of an estate on a river.  At first the river seemed slow and narrow but I walked with dream companions to other points where it was waterfalls, deep still pools and wide expanses with swift currents.  I thought about rivers when I woke up.  Water - flowing, changing, moving - and the closest I can come to a connection is that the river equals all of this, life as we live it out here in the world and inside, the universe(s) we contain and constant, continual metamorphosis.

I think at least some of our peace comes from letting go of the oars or tiller, acknowledging that we are of and with the flow of things much more vast than we.  In looking over our shoulders to be certain that whatever we just left is still there, fixed and unchanging, we find instead that the water is too fast, the point is much too far behind us and even if we could see it, it would be different than we expect.

This is not information I grew up knowing or even imagining.  Yet what I suspect is on a level of deeper awareness, this is not really news.  I have tried for much of my life to nail everything down, each corner, all the sides.  I've held the image of the picnic tablecloth spread on the ground, pegged down every two inches to keep any corner from lifting or the whole thing from taking flight.  The combination of denial and wishful thinking that I constructed has been evaporating until now only the memory of it remains, along with the reasonably enjoyable Picnic of Chaos, not really all that bad once you admit it is what we have, it is all we have.


susan t. landry said...

what IS the picnic of chaos? i love that...

Marylinn Kelly said...

Susan - I think all of THIS, with the blanket loose and capable of being blown from here to Oz, is the Picnic of Chaos. How about one of my grandmother's Cornish pasties and some sweet mixed pickles? I hope you brought a pie. xo