Sir Round,

I am writing to you

to ask for a continuance.

King Linear lords it over me.


Come thou now and help me with circles.

The ones I drew with eyes and a half circle

like a bowl facing the heavens.

Smiles drawn in the dirt.


The lines of men squarely turn oft times

at ninety degree angles.

3.14 sounds like a piece of pie

as the numbers spiral off into infinity.


Nights at the round table

asking questions which deflect off curves.

Job asked and God circled back in return:

Where were you when?


Sir Round,

Guide me again in what comes around.

Surround me in prayers which never end.

A diagram of a circle, with the width labeled as diameter, and the perimeter labeled as circumference

“It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth,” This is the only use of the word circle in the King James version of the Bible.

Read Isaiah 40:18-31 Lots of questions asked throughout. I am okay with the asking and am learning to ponder  the questions which circle back from God. There is a roundness of relationship which I often slice in two with only linear thinking. Jesus asked many questions in response to questions. The root word of questions is quest btw.

Care to discuss this? Drop a line.

Remains of a Day. Part Two of Three

Throughout the day, April 27th 2012, my mother’s 83th birthday, a thread wove through an e-mail my brother Pete sent to his siblings. He attached some thoughtful words of a scene from the past. In it he recalls an interaction with our mother. In essence, he wrote that he basically wanted a “do over”. Many siblings chimed in with similar regrets, and I thought of many personal scenes I wish I could change as well. But Peter’s piece didn’t end in regret; in fact he spelled out what most of us realized as we stepped into parenthood and beyond. Our mother endured so much yet love kept coming on strong.

My sister Mary added a thread to his;

And with each passing event, it’s only natural for us feel the effects of what happens, sometimes to the very deepest core of our being. And each time, it changes us. It’s the process. God and His wisdom created it to be so. And for that, I (we) are thankful.
Mom’s ashes will be in a perfect spot. At that tree that all of us have seen, commented on. Ashes to nurture life, just like all those millions and millions of events that nurtured our souls.

Then more threads were added throughout the day:

 To know that she was always right there to pick up our pieces of heartache, when her heart was breaking too, was truly a blessing. Sister Pat.

 So many memories …Sister Ellen

One of the most impacting things to me is the times I would visit her and we would sit in silence and I always felt bad.  I felt like we should be talking it up!!  She would always say to me “it’s enough just being together”. Sister Carol

Rick and I had a Manhattan last night and made a toast to mom. Wish we could have been there in person. Sister Barb

I want to say I missed all of my siblings last night…I got called into work early, and so as I reflected on life, I was feeding the ungrateful and impatient masses. I miss Mom more than words can express, and I am very weary of losses and illness. Brother John

She wept when I wept and she smiled when I smiled.  Brother Peter

Yes, Happy Birthday Mom. And as you watch today from the Heavens, kiss each of our tears. We love you.  Sister Mary.

All my mother’s children are grown with grown children of their own. Generations now with her DNA tucked in their physiology walk around in space and time putting dents in the world around them. My parents started it all sixty some years ago and the photographer at the reunions has to stand farther and farther back to fit us into the frame. As my oldest brother Rob and I stood under the sycamore he put his arm around my shoulder and the weight of reunion rested there; it was like a paper weight of sorts, keeping us from blowing too far away from the shelter of family.

One hundred years from now when my parent’s genes have thinned out a bit there will be slices of all of us scattered putting dents in space and time.

Caption: Pay Attention

I was reminded to pay attention. Why? Am I indebted to it? If so, do I have enough time to spend on it? Should I get a mind equity loan and pay it in installments? It would most likely be a balloon loan hanging over my head with captions in it. Like the one yesterday suspended above me; “put the wheel barrel down, back away slowly, and go get your son”.

Bash told me he wanted to gather wood with me. He was engaged with helping someone else when I finally found my beat up boots. Then I did what comes naturally, I set out alone. The grove across the street was stuffed with fallen branches of all sizes. I dragged a few larger ones across to our driveway and fetched a wheel barrow for the kindling. One tire was flat and I injected it with a sealant that resuscitated it. That’s when the bubble appeared like a cotton ball just off my left temple. “Go get your son.” I had just said no to have friends over after church since I had been away for three days. Family time I said. There I stood like a big fat liar with a caption hanging, waiting for a response.

So, I fetched him. Maybe one of his tires needed airing up. He dropped what he was doing, threw some shoes on and walked and talked a few feet away. The cotton ball captions between us cast little fluffy puddles of moving shadows on the ground.

He started seeing things in the branches we carried, like one does when looking at cumulus clouds. Creatures and feet dragging and dinosaurs and letters were infused into severed dead things. He walked on the wall and was taller than me for a moment and he let me know. He asked questions about what kind of sticks to pick. He commented on how big the “forest” was and I remembered the little grove of trees on the other side of the Stump’s house when I was a kid, how big it was and the bravery it took to enter into it.

We laid the twigs like a pile of pick-up-sticks on the bonfire circle and I wondered what Abraham thought as he paid attention to his son. God didn’t caption me with a “Go get your son, your only son…” and yet I wonder if in some odd way, as I pay better attention, that someday, as I send him out into the world with a few of our memories in his backpack, I will feel a sting of separation because of the installment payments of attentiveness. He is my son, and I long to fetch him again and again.

Aurora Borealis. Happy Birthday my son of wonder!

We stood in awe

of the celestial



We Pointed

guiding words

of wonder.


The glowing curtain

danced and skipped

in the northern sky.


It hung nervous

in its translucent

evening gown.


The ghost furled

in the folds of

the wind.


Together we strained

to see the mystery

of us.


For my son Nathan on his 23rd birthday.  23rd?!  Ah time, you have aged me again.


© Gerald Allen Barrett