lac mahon, la peche, qc.

lac mahon, la peche, qc.
photo by graham law.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Silent Night.

i am one of those marginalized people you are always hearing about on the radio at this time of year, especially on the cbc. i am one of those people who are invited repeatedly to one tavern or another for a turkey dinner, 'with all the fixins,' and for some friendly, understanding conversation. i am one of those poor slobs good mothers and fathers want their kids to serve food to on christmas day to teach them compassion.

it has never mattered to me whether it be christmas, new years, my birthday, your birthday, easter, ramadan, diwali or any other occasion. i have always been alone, marginalized. i have always carried this feeling with me, in fact, for as long as i can remember, whether actually alone or not. do i even exist? maybe i am the tree that, should it fall in the woods, nobody would hear. i have carried this feeling with me through months of silent retreats or marriage, through solitary mountain treks or morning commutes. i am so convinced of my aloneness that it's no wonder i am, in fact, alone.

i'm not against the idea of going to one of those taverns in town, except that i'm vegetarian, it'd be a long drive and i'm not hungry. i would still feel the same after food and conversation. i find it curious that the great gurus, masters and teachers of our time have actually surrounded themselves with so many people. at least, those are the ones you hear about. do they actually hate being alone? are they actually as afraid of being alone as most everyone? perhaps the truly enlightened ones, the ones who are really convinced of their aloneness, who know what total aloneness really is, are in himalayan caves, thai forest huts or quebec clap-board houses. perhaps it really doesn't matter either way after all.

i am one of those marginalized people you hear about on the radio. only, and this is important, i am as intoxicated by my aloneness and my loneliness as that cbc person will be, is or was on christmas wine. i drink in the togetherness of christmas eve and the peace of christmas morning. i am, in fact, the patriarch sitting at the head of the table and the kid grabbing gifts from under the tree. i am the one ladling out food at the tavern and the one gratefully eating it. i am so surrounded by family that i wish i had just one damn minute to myself and so alone that i wish i had even one family member to talk to me. i am, in fact, both non-existent and all-pervasive.

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