A Good End to a Bad Scene


Such a dismal scene!

Yet, I see this dream as positive.

In the dream…

I step out of my house and find the charred ruins of the city still smoldering, still smoking…

The overcast sky is made even darker by the smoke.

The war has ended.  All the structures around me are blackened and broken.

I walk through the ruins to the main hotel in the center of the city.

It’s one of the few buildings left.

I knock at the door to one of the rooms.  After repeated assurances on my part, I persuade three old, wise Latin gentlemen to come out.

My plan is to gather all the residents into the hotel ballroom and talk about what is to be done.

I realize dreams often exaggerate.  Nonetheless, I shouldn’t trivialize this picture.  Much destruction has occurred on an inner level.  Change can feel like death.

But the war is over.  This can be a time of rebirth.  There’s some reliable old wisdom I can draw upon.  Perhaps these three wise men can lead me to the new birth.

I’m marshalling the rest of my forces as well.  I don’t have a plan yet, but I’m determined to create one.

At this point, I’m reminded of the haiku from the Japanese poet Masahide:

Since my house
     burned down, I now own
     a better view
of the rising moon

Perhaps all that destruction will help me see more clearly.

© 2011, Michael R. Patton
(The Masahide haiku was found in the excellent book Haiku Havest, translated by Peter Beilenson and Harry Behn.)

About Michael Patton

I am a poet, novelist, and storyteller...A new mythologist, a peace miller, a dream worker...I don't qualify as an illustrator or photographer--I just "make pictures"...I have thirteen books available at amazon... I currently reside in northwest Arkansas, but have lived and worked all over the United States... I'm self-taught, for the most part--which is like searching for the right door in the dark. It's an on-going process.... I don't want to write MY story, I want OUR story, so that's what I'm studying: the human story: past, present, future, in its many aspects--including the spiritual. I'm proceeding at a slow crawl.... I don't see the inner world and outer world as separate. By learning about myself, I learn about others, I learn about my world.... Conversely, as I struggle to understand what I see OUT THERE, I learn about myself.... But to be clear: I don't claim any special understanding. I'm still purblind, still only half-awake.... After frustrating experience with the publisher of my first novel, I've published on my own, beginning with e-books, with plans to move into print and audio. Even video.... Along with a second novel, I've now published eight books of poetry. Each poetry book focuses on a theme. For instance, the collection GLORIOUS TEDIOUS TRANSFORMATION is about the slow difficult wonderful process of change.... In that book, as with all my work, I try to be accessible to a general audience, while also striving to achieve a certain literary quality.
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