Blast from the Past

Jesper mentioned last night he’d found another interesting website when he googled my name and I had a look and nearly fell of my chair.

I wrote the poem getting on for four years ago, come June time and it feels like an absolute lifetime ago. In the weeks that followed writing it, and having it published in the diocesan magazine, our whole world imploded. All our certainties became doubts; our way of life collapsed and we realised we had to flow with the changes or go mad. So we flowed. We flowed all the way from the landlocked Midlands to the east coast, to new jobs, a new home and new friends. Everything changed. Almost all our external realities changed and I found it desperately hard to adjust. I had to adjust to a smaller house, in an area where I knew no one, and then to working for someone else when I’d worked for myself, and to a job that pushed me so far out of my comfort zone that I’d never find my way back.

A little over three years later, when this life feels like home again, this poem, this reminder of what we left behind pops up and last night I found it harder than usual to sleep. A week or two back my husband saw our bishop. It’s the first time he’s made any movement in regards to his ministry since we left the Midlands. The time had felt right and the meeting went extremely well.

But for me, this poem is a reminder of a life I left behind and one I mourned for, for far longer than I’d care to admit. I was glad to leave it, true, but there were things that had been good and right about it.

I’m unsettled, I admit. But then, actor or not, Jesus did tend to unsettle people and shake up lives.


6 thoughts on “Blast from the Past

  1. Viv, you ask “What if?” Of course, on one level, he is not just an actor at all. And that is what is important. It is about the symbol and about the divine presence that lives and breathes in each of us. Dare we glimpse this presence without immediately beating ourselves up for presuming so much, for presuming that the divine really is within and not far removed in some distant millennium or in some off-world, remote heaven reserved for the worthy when we know the truth of our worthiness for we know about our shadow …. ?

    • Oh yes!
      At the time, with this guy wandering round the park, I did suddenly think well, in some ways he is Jesus for sure. the last lines of Hopkins poem As kingfishers catch fire, state that I am what he was….
      The guy himself is a very good artist as well as a jesus lookalike, and his work has glimpses of the divine in it.

  2. Hi Viv,

    Jesus was a rebel, an agitator, a provocateur, a gadfly, and a poke in the side of complacency, power, and bullshit. He cut through the rhetoric, the sophistry, the ceremonies and the rituals and went straight for he spiritual jugular. There are few with the balance of insight and courage around like him to risk it all for truth. He spoke of a way beyond tradition only to be divinized and made formulaic by the evolving church. It is a story of Man’s quest to merchandize truth to make it saleable and of the reality that once accomplished; the truth is no longer there.

    • ha, you could have been talking about my husband just then! Shortly after I wrote this poem, he did become a thorn in the side of our bishop, for much the reasons you describe!
      In a very real way the presence of that Jesus at the event to celebrate 80 years of that diocese was an omen for what happened to us, a metaphysical catalyst.
      So wondering, What if, led indirectly to what was.

  3. Just when life is feeling familiar again, the memory of what you left is brought back with a jolt. Oh, I don’t believe in coincidences! Only . synchronicities. This is an amazing one.

    And so true about feeling the presence, though you know he’s “only an actor,”—feeling what the symbol is, feeling the presence of that symbol because it’s in you already. Very well put.

    • Einstein once said, Coincidence is God’s way of trying to stay anonymous and whatever his true views about religion(which are very much disputed) this is a great thought.
      Thanks Meg.
      The guy himself is a rather super artist as well as a Jesus actor. Interesting.

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