Whidbey sunrise, make up your own rules, claim your own life

Whidbey sunrise

August 6th, 2012

I got up early so I could watch the sun rise over the sound. Still haven’t decided yet whether to go for a swim.

What I speak about in Whidbey is how to take your poems and stories forward to the next stage. The stage where they go from page to print. It isn’t an easy task and worse yet, there isn’t exactly a yellow brick road to publication. But there are things you can do to make it more likely, things you can do to throw more obstacles in your path.

The sun seemed to rise so quickly here. The sky first tinged with pink, then rushing with reds, pinks and a flame of orange, the two boats out on the harbor floating on a sea of pink, and then blue fingering into the orange flames and then taking over whole gulps of orange like the orange is being sucked from a straw and then the sky’s left mostly blue and white with traces of yellow fire and the boats still floating now on blue and white, the sea so calm, huge evergreen hands reaching down toward the water, an American flag shuddering a bit in the tiny breeze but not unfurling just trembling, holding on to the last vestiges of empire while the Chinese match us medal for medal in the Olympics. While we export our manufacturing base to a country we used to think we surpassed in every way.

In Hawaii at the little shops where they sell knickknacks and Hawaiian wood, everything is made in China. The Hawaiian wooden spoons and canoes and bowls. The toys. The jewelry. American gift shops and Wal Marts and K marts and Targets are chock full of stuff made in China.

Which is why, here, at the end of the world, or the beginning of the world, something like a sunset is so valuable and worth rising early to see. No one owns that sunrise. It wasn’t made anywhere but here. Like creative work which rises with rigor and passion from the floor of the mind, the sunrise emerges wild and strong from the horizon, from the sea, from that other place, and you were either there to see it, to experience it, to live in that moment, or you weren’t. Maybe you were sleeping, or you were getting through a hangover, or maybe you woke up as I did and lived in the sunrise for a few blissful moments.

The sun will rise again and again. We don’t have to go through life living in the tiny rooms of the mind, the tiny rooms. We can go outside. We can get damp. We can get wet. We can live outside for a time. And that too is worth doing. Making up your own rules. Claiming your own life.

Published in: on August 6, 2012 at 5:23 am  Comments (3)  
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  1. Dear Kate,

    Several days ago, I decided to look on google for an image of George Eversfield. Didn’t find one but in the course of looking I did find your blog. There I noticed that you were in conversation with former High View folk and that in the course of trading experiences, you mentioned an unpublished memoir. That made me sit up and take notice.

    When I contacted you in May of 2009, I wasn’t thinking about you at all, not really. I was intent on getting in touch with Peter Hill, which, with your gracious help, I was able to do. (The contact with Peter, alas, went nowhere, something disappointing to me yet something which I’m comfortable with, since I like talking to people who like talking to me, which was clearly not the case.) Anyhow, you were the first person, I have talked to from High View since the day I left, November 22, 1971.

    A cursory reading of Red Hen’s booklist three years ago left me with the erroneous notion that you had put the Farm so far behind you, that you weren’t interested in looking back. In that, obviously, I was wrong. How could I ever think such a silly thing, given what a searing experience Farm life is and how important it would be to any thinking person to try to understand it? A real failure of imagination on my part.

    In reality, by reason of your sense, sensibility and ability to articulate it, you are the point person for all of us wounded veterans.

    Now that I know better, I am entertaining a new notion, that certain memories and insights of mine might be meaningful to you. And in return, already from reading your blog, I have new insights. Little clues are important to me, for instance, that George was into Hal Linsey. Poor old Hal, he never could figure out much of anything. But as embarrassing as his failed predictions should be for him, a Bible scholar, it should have been even more embarrassing for George, who seemed to see himself as being God’s prophet, or at least he passed himself off as such. Why, then, would someone with his kind of direct access to the throne of God bother with Hal Linsey? It doesn’t make any sense.

    My interest is in this is to understand the degree to which George bought into the Zionist agenda, as Hal Linsey most certainly has done. This relates to another idea of mine, which is that George was Oliver Cromwell redux. Cromwell was more Calvinistic than was John Calvin. So also George. But what at root is Calvinism? This is where I struggle to explain, maybe not unlike the Supreme Court justice who said (paraphrasing) I can’t say exactly what pornography is but I know it when I see it. How does Calvinism relate to Pharisaism? They closely correspond I suspect, but how to explain that with clarity, that is not easy for me to do at this point.

    Oliver Cromwell was one of these larger-than-life types who only come along once evey few generations to dominate their age, often causing lots of wars and other troubles in their wake.

    A key thing about Cromwell is his self-perception of chosen-ness. And that is so about the Jews. Somehow these two “chosen people” were able to work it out between themselves a pact that put Jewish finance at the service of England and the English navy at the service of the Jews.

    Can we not redefine Christianity as transformative, not as conform- ative? Admitedly, there aren’t too many good role models to go by from history to illustrate what I mean but there are a few, most of whom, alas, didn’t call themselves “Christian.” Think Gandhi. Think Chief Seattle.

    The key thing about the Farm was the inability of anyone to stand up to George. Where was Katherine Talcott? Where was Bob English, father of Sarah. These people had stature. Maybe it’s human nature. Where is there any backbone in America?

    Real Christianity is about each individual finding his or her true self worth. I think you know what I mean better than I know what I mean.

    I have to turn in.

    Harvey Kailin


  2. Dear Kate,

    The foregoing was intended as an email to you, not as a public comment on account of mentioning certain parties who are yet
    alive. George I don’t care about. It’s always open season where
    he is concerned. I have yet to go to facebook or many things
    like that. Still tying to catch up with the 20th century when it’s the 21st. Harvey .

    • Love to meet sometime. Yes, on the Zionist thing. Yes, I’ve never put this behind me.

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