Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Machine in the Field

I can never get a quorum. I would like, just once, to hold a plenary session with all the various parts of my heart, brain, and soul present, and really hash things out. But they never all show. In the midst of enthusiastic resolutions and votes by acclamation, the continual nagging thought: "isn't this an awfully small crowd?" You can look at all the concord and say, "oh, this is the real me!" but it's not. It's just the bits of me that showed up this time. The others will be along by and by, surly and bitter, doggedly pursuing their own ends. They never signed on in the first place.

Frustration: and I don't know how to put it to work. On the one hand, I want to quantify absolutely everything and lay out the rules and control everything. But that's not the solution either. There needs to be give in the system, I know that. But the formula escapes me. And I don't really know where I want to drag this ramshackle machine. The day shift pulls it one way, the night shift another, and after a week or two it remains in pretty much where it was. But older, shakier.

I really do not know what any of us want any more. I'm adrift. And have been -- I suddenly see -- for years. Or maybe forever. Maybe even to ask for a direction and a goal is to ask for falsehood, ask for blinders. It may well be.

I have never quite appreciated how finite my resources are. I've never really built that into my plans. There is still, after all this time, a tinge of grandiosity in me. Once the golden boy, always the golden boy: never mind the white hair and the occasional old man's hesitation. "I am as fierce and wild as ever," somebody mutters. But I look over my shoulder to try to see who's talking.


ntexas99 said...

Dale, I just loved how this was so poignantly an expression of the confusion and yes, sometimes the exasperation, of trying to acknowledge and bring into alignment all the different parts of ourselves. As if knowing a direction would make the journey more tolerable. Truly, sometimes all we can do is play spectator. Nicely done.

Lucy said...

'I have never quite appreciated how finite my resources are. I've never really built that into my plans.'

I understand this.