The Awe-full World of Paradox by Brock Noyes
I was working in my tiny global village when the floating butterfly announced incoming mail. I don’t surf the web and studiously avoid any of the black holes on the net; most of my messages are welcome. But this was a chameleon, a black hawk flying down low under the radar. In its talons it bore a streaming banner proclaiming the absolute rightness of our war policy in Iraq. It was from my sister and I had just been strafed by friendly fire. Let’s shoot down the moon before it falls out of the sky.
Step out of the quagmire of right and wrong for a moment. Except for the military industrial complex, which is amassing enormous wealth at the incidental cost of collateral damage (aka human beings), we are NOT winning over there. Hello boys and girls, can you say Viet Nam? Don’t get me wrong, I am glad to be an American. But proud? The universe rarely rewards stupidity. Before Iraq quicksands deeper into civil war, let’s re-install the dictator, Sodom Insane; we will cut his hair, no one will recognize him, and goddamn it, he has demonstrated that can keep things in order over there. Let’s wave the flag, strike up the band, and give George a medal of valor for his brilliant leadership in the heat of battle; do you remember his Zen-like composure in continuing to read stories to the children while the nursery was burning? (And by the way, do you think Dick Cheney does yoga?) Then, let’s round up the soldiers, and declare a great victory for America, democracy and Jesus. And then, lets get the hell out of there!
Prayers of summer just past…Bob Dylan at the Gorge, legendary. Last Thursday at Alberta Street in Portland, authentically and whimsically hip. Flamenco music at Portland’s Aladdin Theatre, magic. Breitenbush Hot Springs, stone cold awesome. Summer in Oregon, “and leave it on”. Hugging a kid, sacred.
Speaking of prayers, as a religious ex-Catholic I confess to having a lurid fascination with the 2000 (yes, you can count, that’s threeeeeee zeros) year old turd the Golden Cow of the Catholic Church has so stupendously uncoiled. Religion is of course a business and Rome has been a blue chip stock; free from taxes and moral accountability. Best of all, it is selling eternal salvation; there’s not much overhead in a promissory note to be delivered post mortem. It’s a covert patriarchal lineage, and that’s no semantic accident, “Eve” and “evil” are linked. There is something deeply pathetic about the church officials (did Elton John design those gold robes?) scurrying about to cover the appalling tracks of sexual abuse. If child rape were not so devastating, the whole situation would be absurdly comical. Here in Oregon we are front row center as we witness the archdiocese of Portland declare itself (morally) bankrupt. On and on it goes…the cock continues to crow.
Do you remember the Lord overturning the tax tables in the temple? How would Jesus respond to priests sodomizing his children? Do these priests call out the Lord’s name when they come? Jesus is a guide of mine and I connect with his light daily in my prayers. Christ is merciful and wise and open as the sky. How did it ever mutate into this? The Awe-Full World of Paradox.
At this point I must say to the Shepherd, things here are truly flocked-up. You can’t give a soldier a gun and expect him not to shoot somebody. You can’t create a monastic brotherhood, put them in charge of little boys, give them the backdoor of contrition, and claim to be surprised when it draws pedophiles into the confessional closet; “You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.” I say the boys have had their fun but they keep shitting in the sandbox. For God’s sake let the women take over! For sure a few of them will mistake the sandbox for kitty litter, but could they possibly do a worse job than the dogs?
We have waded into some heavy water here but I want to close up-tempo with the lyrics of a song I wrote for my kid at Country Faire.
Play pattycake with your favorite babe Go skinny dipping in streams of grace Belly dance with your inner child Finger-paint your dreams across the sky
Brock Noyes is a musician, author and entrepreneur. He also serves as a guide for individuals seeking dynamic change. See brocknoyes.com