Posted by: Jivani Lisa | March 4, 2022

Update on John

Posting an update for our Soaring with God followers: Sadly, John fell and broke his shoulder over a year ago and ended up in the hospital for over six weeks with all sorts of complications. Professional medical staff and social workers helped determine that John had become too weak to care for himself. He entered a skilled nursing facility on January 1, 2021 and remains at that location. His eyesight has deteriorated to the point where he’s unable to read or write on his own. For quite a while, due to COVID-19 protocols, he was unable to have visitors at the facility. Since he’s also deaf, he hasn’t been communicating via telephone either, but over the past few months, he’s been able to have visitors. He does recognize visitors but he has a skewed sense of time. For example, when I visited him in November, he told me he was “turning 75 in a couple days.” In actuality, he just turned 79 last week. One major blessing is that he doesn’t seem to understand how much time has gone by. He seems to think he’ll be flying a Cessna again at some point — and of course, I don’t have the heart to tell him that’s not possible. I continue to hope that maybe a pilot-friend of his could at least take him up for a ride at some point. My guess is John misses flying most of all. He’d much rather be soaring high in the blue skies than tied down to this earth. Whenever I see hawks soaring over a warm road or gulls soaring over water, I think of John. Please keep him in prayer.

Posted by: John | August 21, 2018

Clouds

Clouds are fascinating entities. They come, they go, in all shapes and sizes. I wonder what it would be like to be a cloud. And what kind of cloud would I be?
Would I want to be a towering Cumulonimbus with an anvil top pointing where I’m going? I could rain and snow on everyone or strike with lightening if I wanted to. Or I could just be a cuddly, cute, little cumulus flitting about the blue sky like a white lamb.
I know if I got too low I’d be called fog. I could always dissipate and be gone.
If you saw me over the mountains as a Lenticular cloud, you’d think I was a flying saucer.
Or you might think of me as holy if I were a Corona.
I could be a low lying carpet if I were a Stratus cloud.
Although humans make Contrails, they are clouds, too.
I might just become a Rainbow and show you seven colors.

Posted by: Jivani Lisa | August 20, 2018

Surfacing

Her infant two
months old, she can’t bear
a fourth week of blue
pills: Prozac prescribed
by OB/GYN. So
she stands at kitchen
sink, stares out window
unseeing, with open pill
bottle at her right hand.

She fills
an old glass, cut
from Arby’s complete zodiac
set, this her Pisces glass
with two fancy blue fish
swimming in a circle, one
up and one down.
The downward moving
fish wins today. One pill
on the tongue, one sip
of water – and then
one pill, one sip, over
and over – such an easy
rhythm after all.

She knows she could
stop, but why? She’s dead
inside already, can’t cry.
Her stomach sits
heavy, full of water
and pills, but she must finish
the task once started.

At last, she holds empty
bottle once filled
with sixty pills. Who would
believe it? Not the ER
nurse, for sure, who swears
he heard sixteen pills.

After NG tube, cold activated
charcoal, a seizure,
unconsciousness,
she wakes in hospital
gown hours later
with urinary catheter
and wonders how
she’s alive. Her ears echo
with “Wake up!” said
somewhere, sometime
maybe in a dream.

Posted by: John | August 4, 2018

Where I Am

I’m comfortable with being where I am. I’ve always believed in Omnipotence, God if you will. My mind has to have a beginning and an end, but Omnipotence/God has neither. If I had any conception of Omnipotence, it wouldn’t be omnipotent after all. My only way to deal with Omnipotence, though, is through the figure of Jesus and my prayers.

This is where I am now that I’m 75. And I have no desire to push this concept on anyone else.

Posted by: John | August 3, 2018

Perry, the Parakeet

Perry awoke in his cage at the usual time. The cage still had the towel covering it, but Perry could hear birds chirping outside the house. He didn’t know whether he envied them their freedom or not. He did want a human being to remove the towel, open the cage door, and let him out for some exercise. He squawked: “Perry pretty boy, Perry pretty boy!” to let his owners know he’d awakened. He needed fresh water and needed the paper on the floor of his cage changed. He couldn’t decide whether he liked the phrase “Perry pretty boy” or not, but he repeated it often enough while offering seeds to the birds in his three mirrors.

Posted by: Jivani Lisa | August 2, 2018

Sounds of Terror

Toughest day I ever taught
an exercise class.

Nine. Eleven.
7am Hawaii time,
radio alarm clicks and blares
The World Trade Center has collapsed!

I spring from bed and check
TV where every channel shows
twin towers falling again.
And. Again.

Dim awareness:
Something else seems odd.

I gaze through 7th floor
window. Blue, blue skies empty
over Honolulu International Airport.
Now. Silent.
No jet noise. I wonder
Has this ever happened since
planes came to paradise?
I grab the phone, must know
if work wants me.

My gut clenches at the usual
greeting: It’s a great day
to work out….. Well,
Not. Today.
Come in and teach they say.

I travel near-empty streets, all
bases on lockdown. Find the gym
somber, the receptionist no longer
claiming it’s a great day. Seems the only
fitting action now is to pray.

My studio holds seven students instead
of seventeen. My heart and head seem
empty. I dread the coming pounding
aerobics music. I begin: Let’s have a moment
of silence.

Posted by: John | June 12, 2018

Moments

Moments are magic
Minutes are precise
Moments last forever
Minutes are now
Moments are in the mind
Minutes on a wrist watch
Moments are meaningful
Minutes soon pass
Moments are right brain
Minutes are left
Moments are memories
Minutes are forgotten

Posted by: John | May 8, 2018

Blind Date

Billy Reynolds sat at a corner table at Mojo’s, a quiet little out-of-the way-place, waiting on an internet blind date. Since he’d become more than a little bored in his marriage, he’d chosen a dating site based only on user names and basic info, but no photographs, like the old newspaper ads of his youth. He sat sipping his coffee and glancing at his watch every few minutes. After a brief check of his text messages, he looked up to see a young woman opening the door: Sally, his 20-year-old daughter. He laughed nervously at her shocked expression, then blurted out: “Perfect! You’re just the one to spend an afternoon strolling with me at the zoo.”

Posted by: Jivani Lisa | May 1, 2018

Spirit and Sex

Some recent authors have tried to imply that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were actually married or lovers, etc. I seriously doubt they had sex, but I think they loved each other on a deep spiritual level. I believe the same was true with St. Francis and St. Clare in the 13th century; and St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of Avila in the 16th century.

This stuff is real. There’s something very profound about loving another person deeply and completely, yet choosing to refrain from sexual intercourse. The presence of the person of the opposite sex helps to balance the masculinity and femininity within a person. This leads to a sense of wholeness, a sense of being strong/complete/fulfilled as a person. In other words, we already have everything we need inside ourselves, but the presence of the other person helps us actually experience our wholeness. We don’t need to grasp or possess the other person to be fulfilled.

Posted by: Jivani Lisa | April 24, 2018

The Cider Mill

My poem, “The Cider Mill,” which used to be available online at Every Day Poets:

Autumn air, crisp as apples, warm and yet not –
Every year, the cider visits.

Ah, to stuff plucked fruit
into brown paper bags
and watch machines smash apples
to quench more
than a mortal thirst.

Machines as in monasteries
of my past life, powered
by water carried in wooden tiers – Falling
droplets prick my skin in shaded gardens.

Sweet, ecstatic cider swirls
into my contented cup.

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