Sunday, October 15, 2006

Sonnet Sunday: "And So It Goes"

I may not be blogging for a couple of days. In the tangle of wires leading to my easy chair I got my leg trapped yesterday, and in ripping away a cord I also dislodged my dial-up port for getting online.

I'm at a cafe with wireless today, but none of the financial tasks Kathleen so nicely listed for me can be done, due to the lack of this or that information. This is much like yesterday, when I got a manuscript mailed off with some difficulty but did nothing else. Some days are like that.

In Mexico it was doubly so. If I awoke and made one phone call and the person didn't answer, it was almost a guarantee that I would connect with no one and nothing that day, so that it was better to lounge somewhere with Neruda and a margarita--when strangely, those whom I was supposed to meet would somehow run into me, and other things would get done, or not, but at least I was in the flow by giving up to the flow.

When all connects, a friend of mine calls it "shredding"--a term derived from his being a short order cook, when the orders and the food came flying out in a perfect dervish of effort. I call this connection of desire and action with life the River of Kairos--kairos being the Greek term used for the birth of Christ: "in the fullness of time," or at the right time. When you're in the kairos slot everything leads to everything else inexorably and you are drawn through the necessary connections as in a dream. When you are out of kairos, or stuck in kronos, the Greek word for measured time, you will spin your wheels and never get a thing done. Spinning my wheels allowed me to blog, since I couldn't do anything else no matter how I tried. Maybe that means this is what I was supposed to do. The sonnet below expresses this difficulty more succinctly. The phrase "And so it goes" is taken both from Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse Five and Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude.

And So It Goes

We all have them; days when nothing clicks,
Tab 'A' won't fit slot 'B'. All your calls
Find only message machines. You cannot fix
The toilet without a part. Your engine stalls--
You fear it might be going, too. It's not
That you're not trying, you're trying with all your heart.
But this is not the day to try. The knot
Of kairos won't unravel. You've done your part
And that is all you can do. No results
Are results, too. You know what's not
Permitted to be realized today.
You're so bull-headed that it took a lot
To grant your head-banging a brief stay.
You're from the West, convinced you can impose
Your will on randomness. And so it goes.

Rodent Neutral,

Craig Erick


  1. CE - I love that word 'kairos' and I want to borrow it for a title for a MS - so you mind if I do that? It just seems really appropriate!

    Thanks for your inspiration!

  2. Kathleen8:37 PM PDT

    I'm not familiar with the context of the Vonnegut quote. The Garcia Marquez quote, in entirety (which may be taken as the Buendia family's motto), is "That's how it goes, but not so much." The Chaffin family motto, however (no matter what CE might claim), is "That's how it goes, but even more so."

  3. Thanks, my loving mate, for the actual reference.

    And Caillech, I have no problem with your using kairos--its well known in Greek study and part of the small currency of the English language.


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