Now That You Are Infinite

In memory of my father

 

 

What elegy can truly package 

a life? 

 

Perhaps something about your

love for peanut brittle,

your parrot, your country

or the World Series of 1966?

 

Are there words that can

crystallize a romping spirit

on a short jaunt 

in an imperfect world—

a living miracle,

often misunderstood, 

unheard, sometimes,

but certainly

not unwept today?

 

Even trinkets of sun 

tangled in the mist 

are wondering where all 

the light has gone. 

 

You, who in 

earth-shattering small

ways shaped me 

from the moment 

I showed up

kicking and screaming 

like a frantic event 

in your world,

 

are more than your memory,

 

so they'll be no pining 

for yesterday here 

and I'll try

something different and 

not think of you

as you were,

but as you are . . .

 

Infinite . . .

 

that's right, another facet 

of joy-chiseled Truth,

now knowing dust is only dust,

drama is only drama

(But what a show!)

 

 

for only a spin 

across a deception

called Time,

in a vehicle for 

the original beingness 

that is you.

 

What elation to beam 

through the cracks 

of the shell,

knowing, finally, what 

they meant by freedom,

 

while you wait for me on

the real side of forever

until we reach across 

creation,

 

and all its theater 

 

(all its howling and applause

and everything that doesn't matter),

 

until we meet where there 

are no endings,

 

only love.

 

 

Patricia Joan Jones

 

 

 

 

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Cascade's picture

It's so beautiful,

It's so beautiful, Patricia...

 

patriciajj's picture

Thank you so much for reading

Thank you so much for reading and lifting my spirit with your encouraging feedback. Always an honor. 

Cascade's picture

I just didn't want to say the

I just didn't want to say the things that people usually say. It's beautiful, and I'm sure his soul was smiling as you wrote it.

patriciajj's picture

You wrote the perfect words.

You wrote the perfect words. Thank you for your beautiful consolation. 

 

Pungus's picture

Fairy-dust forcefields

Spiritual jargon is brought to its proper glory with the aid of your eloquence.


I never dreamed what it would be like

To cherish a creative son -Imagination

patriciajj's picture

It's always a thrill to read

It's always a thrill to read your kind and imaginative comments. As brilliant as they are uplifting. Thank you!

 
Stephen's picture

Very beautiful elegy nicely stated.

"Even trinkets of sun 

tangled in the mist 

are wondering where all 

the light has gone."   ---- Beautifully crafted words.

patriciajj's picture

Thank you for reading and

Thank you for reading and leaving such encouraging feedback. Your support means so much.

 
Starward's picture

Knowing the event that

Knowing the event that inspired this poem, I would like to tread lightly---commenting with the utmost respect to your Father, and the utmost respect to this poem.  When I was in school, John Milton's elegy, Lycidas, was considered the high point of elegy, but that poem seems stilted and artificial compared to yours.  And this is a lively poem---it does not mourn, but rather, celebrates your Father's life here and his life with God in eternity; and so it offers comfort to all of us who have felt the temporary separation from loved ones and friends, a separation which the Maker of Stars will adjust in Love and Mercy for our eternal happiness.  The center of your poem operates in two lines:  the real side of forever and where there are / no endings.  I applaud the line break in the latter phrase---giving the words "no endings" a single line emphasizes the meaning visually as well as verbally.  (Your poems are full of such subtle strategies, and some enterprising graduate student is going to construct a disseration---and a long one---on that aspect of your Poetry alone.)  And, of course, the final line seals the poem's spiritual grandeur by naming the nature and identity of God:  Love, as the Apostle Saint John has revealed to us.  In that last line of that single, most spiritual and most important word, is an allusion not only to Saint John's first letter, but also the thirteenth chapter of Saint Paul's first letter to the Corinthian Christians---the great hymn to Love that was revealed to Him by the Spirit.  And following it, in the fifteenth chapter, is the Hymn of Resurrection; and I cite all of these to say that your Father now sees all of these aspects.

   I should like to say one more thing about that line while you wait for me.  I once heard a very fine sermon that reminded us that there is no time in Heaven---it is of infinite duration.  Therefore, while we here, who are still caught in time, must wait, those who have preceded us there will not have long to wait.  It will seem like only a matter of minutes, to them, who wait for us (to whom, illusively, it may seem like a long time).  So those whom we wait---sometimes for whole lifetimes---to see, will receive us to themselves in what Saint Paul called the blink of an eye.

     That is why I do not say words like, "I am sorry for your loss," very often.  Because, as the devout believer, the actor Peter Cushing once pointed out, our loved ones are not lost (as if misplaced), they are merely temporarily absent from where we are until we shall be where they are.  

      You have honored your Father with this poem; and, honoring him, you have honored God---and that is the chief responsibility of a real Poet.  And you are!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Enjoy effulgent days, and exquisite nights,

unto the exultations of Heaven.

Starward

patriciajj's picture

I'm overjoyed and honored that

I'm overjoyed and honored that you completely comprehended my strategy and used the words "lively" and "celebrates" to describe my perspective. I was also elated by your evaluation of the last word, which I actually second-guessed momentarily, but your theological prowess assured me that it was the only word possible.

 

Thank you also for your profound and mood-altering contemplation on time, and I completely agree with you that erroneous platitudes are vapid and worthless to a grieving heart.

 

Always an honor. And again, thank you!!!