Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Latter Rains

Sometimes I write about just nothing. That last thing, about Mel Gibson and Tim Rutten. I don't even care. It was just something to write about. Was my point that we should be tolerant and not hypocrites? I was really putting that stellar IQ of mine to work there, eh? It takes real skill to make the obvious even more obvious. Mark Foley. It's pathetic that I even know his name, yet I think I've written about him twice. Time must be weighing heavily on my hands. And oh, those Democrats. They make me so mad! Sometimes my wrath so constricts my ribcage that I can only inhale. Or not. Even Kim Jung-il, with whom I've been having some fun -- don't really care. What good is an opinion about something you can't change? You want to argue about opinions, see me twenty years ago.

Even when opinions translate into actions, as with Foley's boy-love -- I raised my son, and I raised him to be able to handle the Honorable Congressman Foley and his verbal penis-thrusting. My boy could deal with it, and if he couldn't, he knew he could trust me to take care of it. You see? I trusted him, and he trusted me. And Tim Rutten despises Mel Gibson? This is his right. My despising adheres more to conduct than thoughts, but it takes a village, after all, to populate a village. We must have our village witch doctors and our village idiots. Even Dear Leader Kim's totalitarian and now nuclear evil -- what can I do about it? The oceans are always full, the seasons proceed in their courses, and the world is practically entirely evil. I should worry about this? We do what we can do about the things we can do something about. The rest of it is just opinion.

We have sat at the boards of our table, eating thick brown bread and fresh butter and stew with pieces of meat, and the Cossacks rode in and burned down our village. Our sisters were raped, our brothers cut down, our children stolen. And we wept, and we cried out to God in his heaven and dug the necessary graves, and found new mates and gathered straw for thatch. We have toiled in the fields from sun up to dark, plowing and planting, shooing the birds, carrying water in wooden buckets, only to watch the rains fail in a sky like brass and the ground grow hard as lead. Until even our seed grain was gone, and famine beat us down with the dull thud of a failing heartbeat, and no one was left to bury the last bodies. We have tended our shops, scraping by, saving where we could, as honest as we were allowed to be. And our windows were broken and our fathers beaten and we were reviled and arrested and sent to camps where we were slaves until we were worked to death.

God watches over us. We cannot say what worse things would have overtaken us, if he did not. Because we do not see the hidden battles waged outside our understanding, we think they are not real. Perhaps our blindness in this is another blessing. If God is so glorious that none might look upon him and live, it may be that evil is ugly enough to drive us mad. The evil that we can see is enough to drive us mad. And so we learn to see, and not to see. We know the Cossacks have mounted up, but they might bypass our village. We know that weather is not a proper place for us to rest our faith, yet we continue to plant our crops. We dwell in darkness and only promises light the way. We know that every road ends at a graveyard. Somehow the journey has to be worth the pain. Somehow, somehow faith has to be enough.

How could I continue, otherwise?

So I retain a certain aloofness, about opinions. Anger, and bitterness, and outrage -- these emotions are so much funnier than happiness or contentment or joy. And I'm enough of a clown. So when I read about the insane or evil or odius, or just about the enemy, I understand that we do what we can do. We send our sons to perilous places in the hope that it will make a difference, and we know that sometimes the rains come and sometimes they fail to come.

Nothing is so certain as an opinion.

How deeply sad the world is.



GUYK said...

I came to the conclusion some years back that for the most part evil is what a particular society determines it to be. I have no doubt that the N. Koreans figure that developing a nuke is rightous.

But then of course I figure that Kim wong ding dong is one evil sob.

Jack H said...

My take is a bit different. Evil is what it is. We either recognize it for what it is, or we don't. NoKo having a nuke is certainly not evil. Jungle Kim is evil, not because he has a nuke, or even because he would use it, but because of what he does to his people. Nukes don't kill people, Dear Leaders kill people.