full moon in autumn rain—rage and love
Chimes hanging from the neighbor’s house play in the slightest breeze. My eyes open. In the light of the desert morning sky, the full moon is gone. But the urge to dance and sing in the full moon lingers. I wash my face with warm water. Wipe it dry. It’s early morning and I’m ready for the beauty of the earth.
I sit down in my bedroom as the sun comes. Visions of living back in the city arise. It’s spring and I’m sitting on the deck of my former house. The morning smells of hundred-foot eucalyptus trees. I listen to crows and watch them soar toward the treetops. Even with concerns about the world we live in, I fly high with them. Crows have wings and it seems they don’t have a care in the world. But this isn’t true. Even with wings, babies are hungry and the parents battle for territory to bed down in every night. I can see this all from the deck.
Peace fades with a thought of a long-gone memory of mistreatment and violence. The memory clashes with bird song and sirens. Rage enters. Crows caw. I shake my head. Rage won’t leave from where it lives, which is in the back of my mind, a place that holds great details. I don’t quiet the rage for peace. Peace is not superior. Peace is persistent.
Rage is persistent as well. I meditate while trembling with rage. It’s difficult, but possible. I breathe for a long time in the midst of city sirens and those thoughts of pain and the violence I experienced firsthand. My head is tight. I haven’t asked any questions, but from my own silence there’s a message. It says: rage is here because love is needed. Peace washes over me in the moment. Rage is asking me to consider love? Yes, perhaps begging me to do this. And then it will leave out the back door, which is the back of my mind.
As I’m considering love, the morning sky gives way to a strong rain. I don’t want to go inside, leave the expansive deck of my hilltop home, just as I don’t want to wipe out rage and make space for a kind of vanilla love, infused with artificial sweetener. But I can consider love grown and harvested from rage.
Rage repeats itself like a heartbeat marking suffering accumulated over a lifetime. Is love present and knocking in a rageful way?
The rain lightens up. I return to the deck outside. I look up at the dark clouds—full and unmistakably ready to burst again and perhaps this time anoint my head, clear it, and blow prayers into it. The possibility of love coming through excited me. I was ready to moisten the dry spells of rage I had lived with most my life. I looked up at the sky and vowed to learn how to call down rain.
The memory of my city life fades for the moment. I have faith, sitting here in the desert and looking out my bedroom window. The cacti, with all of their thorns, still offer their juices. The piñon trees growing in the dry desert soil still offer their fruit. What’s dry is not necessarily dead.
The neighbor’s chimes repeat their song. Last night’s full moon is gone, and a late autumn rain, much like the spring rain in the city, has come to the mountains.