Monday, January 06, 2014
I just returned from a delightful holiday visit to San Francisco. The trip was packed with wondrous adventures, including, among others, the Smuin Ballet (terrific), the "Her Church" (where I read a poem), Matisse and David Hockney at the museums, a visit to Stephanie Marohn's animal sanctuary in the Gold Country, a constant round of Asian and other cuisine, and, of course, time spent with my closest friends who live there.
The trip was also marked with various interesting synchronicities. Here is one: My friend Karen and I were scheduled to meet Stephanie for dinner after the afternoon ballet performance, but she had to cancel. We decided instead to drop by the near at hand tea shop for a bite to eat. The tea restaurant was quite full, but we were offered places at the counter, and we took these. While we sat there, I began to chat with the woman next to me, and after about three minutes she said, "Are you Dorothy?" I was quite startled by this, since I did not recognize her and I know only a handful of people in San Francisco. Then she explained that I had done a poetry reading a few years ago at a spiritual center where she was co-director. Furthermore, she was a close friend of Michael Black, beloved friend who was killed by a hit and run driver a few months ago. She was a lovely woman and we were delighted to reconnect in this way. We agreed that Michael (in spirit form) must have arranged for us to meet in this way and was probably grinning somewhere in the wings.
If any one of the factors mentioned above had been different, our meeting would not have happened.
Here is another synchronicity, not so big, but lots of fun: As we were driving back from the Gold Country (in eastern California) my friend Karen commented that she was hungry and wished for some Mexican food. Within three minutes a Mexican restaurant showed up in some little town neither of us had heard of and we had one of the best Mexican dinners you could imagine.
When I flew home, the day was sunny and warm in Colorado. Next morning the ground was covered in snow (part of the great cold wave that has struck much of the country) and this extreme cold is predicted to remain with us for many, many days. Fortunately,
I was "stocked up" with canned food and frozen food to last out the storm.
Here is a wonderful poem that I found on my computer when I checked the e-mails:
To My Students
You who can read,
do not take it for granted;
you who cannot,
there are worlds, there are gods
yet to be quickened in your dreams.
The worlds await to form on your tongue,
the gods to tremble in your ears.
These little marks, black as fly-droppings
on the page, and as small,
speak to you - you do not hear.
I cannot tell you the beginning of naming,
only how it changes and magic
sparks and sputters at the base of the skull.
I do not know if there is answer;
perhaps our speaking is enough.
Men have died always alone;
these small blemishes on the page
their final legacy.
Do not lose them,
these the enchanted cinders
of our stars.
- Rafael Jesus Gonzalez