What would a stopwatch show if it counted the minutes
spent talking inside our heads—
rehearsing future events, conversations,
or rehashing past ones?
Living largely in our imagination,
even as we function in the world. . .
Seemingly harmless, this talking, as normal as breathing.
But, like narcotics, a certain distance appears—
subtle, yet a steel trap, closing,
the distance inserting itself between us
and our own experiences.
Behind our conscious mind, these solo conversations
also give birth to distorted offspring.
Imagining we are just a wee bit nicer or smarter
(or dumber) than is really the case,
we come to believe it as truth—
an invisible cage of subtle lies.
Once seen, this trap needs to be sprung, but how?
There’s this: Simply stop all the words, mid-sentence even.
Stop believing in them, just for a minute at a time.
No harm done pulling the plug on things living only in our mind . . .
And if we did, what would take its place?
In the moment, the real relief of life without commentary,
without judgment—stray voices just ignored
in favor of whatever appears next.
Over time, the possibility of cumulative effects, unfolding:
Seeing and accepting what is actually true,
minute by minute—a noble path, somehow bringing
new respect just for being human.
On a good day, seeing the world and everything in it,
including ourselves, as alive, vibrating,
Watching one tension dissolve, and then another,
tied-in as they are to past and future dramas,
leaving us in peace, finally.
On occasion, the gift of a feeling of real gratitude
for just our very existence, here, at this moment. . .
And, as if in response, an impulse akin to prayer
that asks to be shown how to be of service.
And then perhaps a question waiting years to be heard,
not framed in words,
but something like,
“What would it take to be completely free of worry?”
And the equally wordless response,
bigger than the sky,
something like “God”. . .