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Blue lines…

April 23, 2010

Out of nowhere, Leon found his voice…

Though cracked and dry and uneven…

his song was loud and passionate…

filled with commanding urgency…

It was the biggest sound the pond had ever heard…

He sang until his friends stopped and listened and understood…

—  in Leon’s Song by Stephanie Simpson McLellan

A little boy once put his hand up while I was reading to the class,

and he told me,

Teacher, I’m a vision-ree…

I can see things before they happen…

I didn’t dismiss him,

or silence him,

because I felt the truth of his words…

But more importantly he was wearing Spiderman sneakers,

so I believed in him,

and I thanked him for his message…

Sometimes strangers come up to me and say,

Who are you???

I think that despite all of the bad press it must be easy for Luongo and all of his team mates,

if they ever forget who they are,

or they have days when they aren’t so sure,

they can stand in front of a three-way mirror and see their names on the backs of their jerseys…

In 2007 I attended a one day conference at S.F.U. Harbour Centre…

Academic conferences give me hives,

but when you’re a graduate student you need to attend these sorts of things to get a sense of what other people are saying,

and to get a sense of how what you say gets received…

I sat down for the first session…

I have no recollection what the conversation was about,

all I remember is that I said something…

Something about how our purpose for being here is to wake up

I also wanted to say, and smell the coffee, but I had my wits about me enough to filter…

After the session I was standing in the hallway eating a standard issue hospitality cheese scone,

and I felt a cluster of people whispering,

and looking in my general direction…

I smiled…

They approached…

The woman had her notebook flipped open…

The man asked me, pointing to the notes,

Did you say this???

I read what she’d written down…

I said,

I’m pretty sure I did…

He said,

Who’s idea is that???

I said, I don’t know…

I guess it was my idea at the time…

I tried not to say it but the pressure was building in my chest and I couldn’t contain it anymore so I had to let it out…

He said,

It’s very Buddhist…

I said,

I don’t know anything about Buddhism…

I’m just trying to keep it all on the ground floor…

I went to the next session…

A power point presentation on mind-fullness…

I promise you,

if you’re in search of irony there is no better place to find it than in academic squares masking themselves as circles…

I sat there and listened…

Pressure built in my chest…

I moved it up to my throat,

and threw up a question,

about something that wasn’t sitting well with me…

Even though this professor is seen to hold all the knowledge in the area,

I’ve seen him deferred to time and time again,

it hadn’t occurred to him to consider that maybe some things are best left sacred…

I went up to the professor to reiterate my point of view…

He said,

I know people who would want to talk to you…

Do you have a card???

I don’t play cards…

I prefer games of dirty word Scrabble…

I’d like to know where someone gets the GD credentials and the gall to call themselves a sleep expert…

I’d also like to know how much THE organization is paying to have someone tell them when they need to get their team home to bed,

or when they need to get up to take the morning charter…

I know her only intention was to help,

but when my beloved principal said to me,

I want to prepare you for your interview,

just to make sure you say all of the right things

I wondered how I’d gotten this far in life without her…

All of the real men of genius who keep going on about what is and isn’t working for the Canucks should take an afternoon off,

and have some pre-game sex…

If there is a straight line to the Stanley Cup I don’t want to know about it…

I’d be bored stiff,

and no one would want that responsibility on their hands…

A young professor once handed back a project that I had put my heart into…

He said to me, with the face of a little boy who isn’t getting what he wants when he wants it,

You give me all of this stuff…

like your trying to prove something…

you remind me of myself…

I thought but didn’t say,

I may be holding up a mirror,

but I’m not doing any of this for you…

I’m doing it all for my people…

All of the stuff that I have put together on assignment,

was preparation…

And its turning itself into something I could not have anticipated,

right before my very eyes…

Faith and desire and the swing of your hips...

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