(While thinking about Psalm 23)
There is that moment before sleep when
I am resting in to it when
Relaxing in to it when
It is as though someone has flipped the mattress when
My arms fly out when
I grip the mattress
In order to keep me from falling into
At least, it's oblivion I'm afraid of.
The reality is that I do not know.
It is not obvious it's oblivion.
It could be that, indeed, that the nothing I am afraid might be there actually is but
It's just a short fall that won't hurt at all.
Maybe there are pillows on just the other side of oblivion.
Maybe there are green pastures and still waters;
Maybe restoration, there.
There is no obvious obligation to oblivion being obligatory;
"obligatory" being that state the living reside in after being convinced that the end of one thing can only result in an easy heaven, a merely appropriate purgatory or an eternal-increasingly painful hell.
(Here, there are memories of Charlie. Charlie was a huge, giant muscled, 28 year-old, six foot six, mentally different, camper and I was his skinny, 16 year-old "assistant" counselor at the camp for "special" adults. He loaded heavy boxes on to trucks for Goodwill and grunted to communicate. He always seemed angry to me.
We were at the pool at the same time as the 2nd grade camp and, as he stood in the middle of the water trying to figure out what to do. Some scrawny 7ish year old kid, for no apparent reason, jumped on his back. Charlie reached back, grabbed his arm and flung him a good five feet. The 7ish year old kid screamed as he flew threw the air, in to oblivion, and was only silenced by plunging in to the water.
7ish fought his way back up out of the water, inhaled a desperate breath and then exhaled laughter and joy before, as quickly as he possibly could, he swam back towards Charlie to be flung in to oblivion, again.
It soon became a pool full of 7ish monkey-piraña making the water foam as they rushed toward Charlie as quickly as possible and as they climbed Charlie and he, with his left and his right, flung the screaming, laughing 7ish through the air; arching through the air then splashing like the most bizarre fountain. He did not smile. He may have grunted with delight. I could not tell.
It was dangerous and beautiful.)
What happens if I fall? If I let go loose of this death grip I have will you catch me or let me fall and which might be better?
(Will you, even, fling me through the air with a graceful arch of unintention?)