Archive for September, 1985


Sunday, September 1st, 1985

We think we are so smart,
that we finally understand the nature of things.
This has been an enduring illusion,
one that seems to move with us through time.

In pre-scientific cultures mental illness
was often explained in terms of spirit possession.
At some point in our recent past
we came to believe that our science could explain everything.
And while this view may draw us ultimately to a clearer truth
it is fraught with dangers we always seem blind to.

The assumptions we make
that go unrecognized
give us distortions like Freud
and his original sin; sex.
And from such fraudulent beginnings
we evolve schemas of thought;
of logic and precedence
based on smoke.

And, even if we do manage to begin from solid ground,
we can and do fall prey to reification
and end up believing
our laws are the reality.

Like children, we are just beginning to think
and like children who begin too many projects
beyond their attention span
we leave many thoughts half thought.

So what does the future hold?
What other illusions will we stumble through,
full of pride at our small learnings
and convinced, at each moment,
that we have most of the big picture and only lack
the fine details.

We are still convinced that what science can describe
encompasses everything
and we are still blind to the truth
that no matter how much we know
we are always still moving
the small light of our knowledge
thru an ever greater darkness

1 September 85

— Copyright 1965-2008 by Dennis Gallagher —


Tuesday, September 3rd, 1985

3 sept 85

Dear Lord,

I begin, today, with prayer. In his sermon Sunday, Homer said
prayer is not a matter of quality but rather of quantity. I’m not
sure I believe that but he did get me thinking about prayer in
general. I’m asleep so much of the time. I remind myself
sporadically to wakeup and then, just as quickly, I’m asleep again.
What Homer helped me see is something I’ve seen before and then
forgotten. And that is that by setting aside some time each day to
speak to you I am helping myself to stay awake spiritually.

So, Lord, what will I say to you? That I want to commune with
you, whatever you are. That I want to open myself, through prayer
and in general, to those subtle urgings you may give me. I want to
spend a part of each day thus. I want this to become a continuous
thread of introspection and dialogue. I want to awaken spiritually
and become…. Become what ever it is that such awakening can lead
me to be. Speak to me, Lord. Speak through me, clean my eyes and
make me a deep pool of reflection and compassion. Waken me and help
me fulfill whatever purpose I may have.

I sit here now a bit sleepy as the day’s work begins. About to
plunge into the details and absorbtions of my work and life. Help me
do them well. Help me to will it so. And help me, when the hours of
absorption have claimed me, to awaken back to this deeper thread. I
want to connect these moments like an endless chain until they become
the ground against which my life’s details are painted.

3 sept 85

– a prayer

— Copyright 1965-2008 by Dennis Gallagher —


Wednesday, September 4th, 1985

         The summer's gone to rain
           the murmurs of water and leaf.
         These gray skies and cool air
            speak to me of my Vancouver winters.

         Indonesia and Singapore and Canada
           begin to loom behind the rain
             and the ending of this unique summer.

         The fear of loosing things
           is with me, sometimes.
         In the mirror, in my relationship with Lise,
           in my job, in my son's years,
              and in Rose's patience.

         And I wonder if I was ever
           stronger or weaker.
         Before, I used to stare my fears down
           with the promise of the future
         but now I've lived, I'm waiting no longer to begin,
           and I know the future as well as the past.

         Now, when I confront my fears or the rain,
           I can bring no illusions.
         Now enlightenment is not an option
           among my future dreams.
         It waits for me like steel trap
           behind each burning moment.
         And it waits for me to arrive,
           dead or alive.

                              4 September 85

— Copyright 1965-2008 by Dennis Gallagher —