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“The Fact that Earth is Heaven…”

March 20, 2020

23 of 47

“The Fact that Earth is Heaven —

Whether Heaven is Heaven or not

If not an Affidavit

Of that specific Spot

Not only must confirm us

That it is not for us

But that it would affront us

To dwell in such a place —”

This morning Heaven was re-docking my IPad’s keyboard after the misery of yesterday’s toil with it laid fully across my text.

But my IPad is also hell. It corrects, loses and frustrates the miracle of making words.

This Covid Lent is Hell, too.

It is for most of us, yet a Devine place of no infection, but it a place of waiting for it in fear and doubt. “This cannot be worth it” rings in my Type A ears. “It would affront us to dwell in such a place” that we do not control, let alone make.

I seek to make heaven every day. I crank, cajole, whine, weedle and conspire to get where I think I should go. Emphasis on the “I”. (The keyboard remains docked as I type this.) The idea that all our plans, hopes, in fact justice, is crucified in our face, every day and 2,000 years ago simply pisses me off.

We are better than that.

No, I do not think so. Emily Dickinson was not a public Type A, she was most often alone, internal, thinking aloud in silence. Her tiny world, and Covid-esque sequestration manifest distilled insight in our humanity. She knew, hated, and accepted and revelled in not not knowing. She lived in the mid-19th century where mass printing was the internet, telegraph was 6G, trains were planes and horses were cars.

Now we are fully, World-wide, paralyzed by tiny cells leaping between us. We know what they are, where they came from, but can not yet do anything but avoid them. If affronts us to dwell in such a place.

But that is the place we cannot change. No matter how perfectly we avoid infection, it only delays the mystery of death. If we knew Heaven we would be good with it – “Whether Heaven is Heaven or not” is not good for us. So we are affronted to dwell in such a place “it is not for us.”.

So we Sequester Shame those who breach the Heaven we hope for when they hit the beaches or go to a restaurant. Some literally cry out “SOCIAL JUSTICE!” when others do not make the world as safe as it could be for everyone. How could they be wrong?

Justice is ours to confer because we are not Emily Dickinson, at least I am not. But justice, like death, was not created by us, it was given to us. We need to find out what justice and death are by listening, not screaming. But it is so very easy to scream with a docked keyboard. And mind.

Lent, before and after the coronapocolypse, is a pause in our rush to justice to scream at death. Emily lived in Lent her entire life. I wish I knew her.

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