holding back the river

By November 5, 2015 No Comments

Overwashed with warmth to receive an email from my brother this evening. He and I don’t talk as frequently as I’d prefer, but this happens to be the case with most of the people in my life whom I care for the most.

We’re all so incredibly invested in our own realities/responsibilities, living our lives across varying time zones as a deck of cards spread in front of the dealer.

Which is why I warmed so intensely upon seeing his name appear on my screen. In the email, he referred to my first book and a quote that he vaguely remembered to be, “You can’t fight the river.”

Positing after, “….. yet, isn’t it true that sometimes you must. Here is a good example of such a time from Berkeley’s free speech movement.

Installation by Nonotak SIGNAL festival


The quote he was recalling is attributed to Paulo Coelho, “Sometimes there’s just no way to hold back the river.”

So while I was moved by Mario Savio’s impassioned call to arms at Berkeley, I don’t know that Coelho’s words were speaking to the concept of “fighting” a river (a system or government) so much as he was trying to articulate the futility of standing in life (the river) and thinking that you can somehow catch, dam or control the mass of the water (events/circumstances of your life) all of the time. Altering some of the flow? Sure. But the entirety of the river rushing at/past/through us? Not possible.

And so, I didn’t choose the way my life looks right now. This apartment with the subtle noises and slower light, the way it feels to wake up in the white, crisp quiet and eat breakfast, how I spend my time with people who continue to appear and nurture and bless me with healing laps over the gash he left in my sense of self trust.

Floating weighted on my beach cruiser down the bike path and side streets to work everyday. The edge of the world magic encompassing the Malibu coastline, a steadiness in my days. Working freely. Writing daily. Refining the parts just below and covering the surface of my being. chakra dance classes, mentoring Aramie in the church basement, stacks of books piled around the bed amongst journals jewelry laundry prayers and all the visual mementos that come with a life like this.

Dreaming of the three days over thanksgiving when I’ll first encounter my sister as mother energy.


And so, I didn’t choose the way my life looks right now, but I love it. In a way that feels more appreciative than ecstatic. It’s the edge of magic exploding tinted with melancholy and best efforts to let go of the thought that I could somehow ever get to a point of understanding the way it all went down.

∆  Loving Jared Leto’s series

∆  Need to get to this gallery asap for Dan Flavin installation (very James Turrell)

∆  Deciding to go Cliff notes on Marcus Aurelius Meditations because I’m not patient (or versed) enough for line-by-line deciphering

∆  Finished recently and have already referred back to chapters for second and third passes through… Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism

∆  Patti Smith’s Just Kids is a masterpiece

∆  Must attend Signal Festival next year

I wonder what you’re exploring right now? comments below

all the love