“Who is it in the press that calls on me?/I hear a tongue shriller than all the music/Cry ‘Caesar!’ Speak; Caesar is turn’d to hear.” And a soothsayer replies, “Beware the ides of March.”
The ides of March is also the 285th day since my accident on June 5. I always wonder if Caesar had some notion of what might happen when he walked into the senate that day? Out of the corner of his eye, did he detect a quick flash of light reflecting from the cold iron blade that was about to be plunged into his flesh or that glimmer in the eye of one of the assassins? Life, death, they happen quickly whether we are prepared or not. It’s in those moments, between the light and the dark as we are just emerging from our dreamscape, that we encounter the reality of our lives. A quick flash in the corner of the eye, a brief breath that raises the hairs on the back of the neck, the realization that mortality is ever present.
Soon we will be plunged into the story of Holy Week, from the triumphal parade on Palm Sunday, to the night in which Jesus had his last moments with his friends, then the betrayal, trial, and finally the execution. Forlorn, forgotten, abandoned and soon dead and buried. Do we ever get that moment during this week, that feeling of passing through the wardrobe and into something new? Death is around us each day, we can’t escape its grip anymore than we can individually escape gravity and fly off into space. We don’t dwell on it, that would make for a depressing life, but not to acknowledge its power is to create an idol out of self. A self made god that we have the power to control and manipulate. Say the right words in the proper, secular sacramental environment and all will be well, then the dark angel will passover seeking out another victim.
Here I am, 285 days later, still working out the scope and depth of that one moment. I have not forgotten, nor have I slipped into old, worn out patterns but have instead infused my living with that dying. Resurrection can only happen when death has occurred, in many ways something died on that day and only now am I beginning to see a shape in the fog that exists on the periphery of my mind. This shape, like the fog is far from solid and I still grope like a man blinded from birth yet moving forward in the belief that there is something there, something of great worth. I ask myself, how will I know when I’ve arrived but that really isn’t the question, it’s more how will I endure the journey ahead.
As I look outside a light drizzle is coming down and the skies are gray and heavy. I can hear and see cars moving past the house, a plane in the air carrying its load of humanity within its shell, both going somewhere. I seek to go, to move beyond the confines of my inner being and to allow these words to carry me away into places I have only dreamed about. In some small measure even as I write today I feel a sense of movement, a transport into another realm where the words become alive. I am being carried on a current, a small twig in a vast ocean of swirling images, that bring life and color into view all beckoning to be seen and heard.