Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Reality check

June 16, 1980

Work has become a conversation that includes arts, politics and even religion.
We all talk while we work. While I do my share of talking, I’m also getting a lesson on life, putting together the bits and pieces of a world that has lain dormant in me for a while.
Now, I’m on a different side of things than I was back when I worked as warehouse man and truck driver.
My co-workers condemn modern art; I defend it.
They blame rock and roll for the moral decline in America, and I tell them they are full of shit.
They bring up God, and I asked who the fuck is he?
Even though I am almost always on the defensive with this crew of very down to earth people, I find the whole thing inspiring, arguments and facts tumbling around in my head like shaken dice, and falling into place from some well of knowledge I didn’t remember acquiring. All those years reading on work time breaks capped off with my first year in college and I find myself defending things like ballet which I never really liked.
But the whole time, I see gaps in this puzzle inside of me, missing pieces that make this mosaic incomplete.
And yet, I found something else in all this, another well of wealth I never expected to find, inside this group of people I work side by side with, each of their stories worth a fortune to anyone who can possibly put their lives down on paper. Each has his and her own song to sing, and I need to listen.
This is all strange to me, since I have worked around people just like this all my life, grown up with people just like them, and yet never saw any of them for what they were until now.
I glance out the back door at the overcast sky, and do not despair at the threat of rain. My mind is flying high above those dark clouds, thinking of all the possibilities, all the stories that need to be told.
All I have to do is put pen to paper and start, and lift the pen from the paper when it is done.
Why have I never thought of this before?
What has changed in me? What key got turned to unlock this in me?
Perhaps that’s why I came back here, less for the living, and more for coming alive.

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