To a dear uncle…

I received a phone call today from my mother that shocked me. To be honest, I’m still in a state of denial. And that’s just how I’m feeling. I can’t begin to imagine how my stepmom feels.

Her brother Freddie was a truck driver, and one of the sweetest, greatest teddy bears I’ve ever known. They were very close as siblings, and Mama (stepmom is her partner of 20 years) loved Freddie like a brother. I felt close to him. Then again, everyone who knew Freddie felt a connection with him. He was open, loving, wouldn’t hurt a fly. He’d been through so much hell in his life, yet he managed to conquer his personal demons and became an inspiration.

This morning… he passed away. According to the New York Highway Patrol, his rig veered off the road, hit trees, and a fuel tank exploded. They don’t know if Freddie had a heart attack, a stroke–whatever. There will be an autopsy, though, and then he’ll be cremated and his ashes scattered around blueberry bushes in Decatur, AL.

Love your family–no matter how far they might be from you.

Celts and exile

In Celtic cultures, exile was considered a worse punnishment than death, reserved for those who had committed unpardonable offences. For us moderns, exile is less of an issue. If we are thrown out of one community or banished from our families, it is much easier to start over somewhere else. Exile is not the source of shame it once was. However, it still happens. Groups of people can choose to cast out and entirely reject another, for all kinds of reasons. So, these are the concepts I was playing with when I wrote this poem.

Exile

You have crossed the line

Breaking relationship with dishonour

Showing no remorse.

Duty is to those who return it,

Loyal to those who remain true,

Trust only where faith is given.

Your speech lacks mindfulness

Actions without heart and compassion

There is a rot in your soul.

We are careful of each other

But you have chosen to be outside

And broken the bonds of tribe.

Cruelty does not beget kindness.

Betrayal will not earn affection

These are laws of nature.

If fear and jealousy give reason

We see no merit in those, no honour.

You had an obligation to do better.

We are not responsible for your fall

For your choice to be unworthy,

We merely release you from sundered ties.

You will go forth an exile.

We will not look upon you again,

Nor shall your name be spoken.

Henceforth you are an irrelevance

The path you chose awaits you,

And we shall see you no more.

Ancient Calendar: June 22, 2010

One of the Greeks favorites was the woodland Pan. This God was envied and highly celebrated. So it comes of no surprise that today was just one more day in their calendar honoring him.

Pan kept to the meadows and forests. He traveled with his own entourage of Nymphs during the evening hours. Pan was famous for his sexual encounters and exploitations. Pan in his day was the equivalent of a rock star in ours.

Pan had the legs and hoofs of a goat, plus the horns of one. In fact, many believe that he was so popular–being one of the oldest gods of the Greek pantheon, that the Christians used his image to form their artistic version of Satan.

C.H. SCARLETT
www.chscarlett.net

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