Michael Divine

Writings :


The Train, The Mummy, and The Mountains

Riding along the Amtrak on my way back to San Diego passing mountains and fields in afternoon golden sunlight. Rocky red mountains tinged with green, laden with it, draped over them. At the same time, Hard to tell if i am going south or north- the sun is to my back but the land passes me from left to right. This makes no sense to me.

Egyptian pyramids and kitchy lines of "The Mummy" play out on the screen of my laptop while my mind drifts to thoughts of the Casa Barranca Tasting Room in Ojai and the work I'll be painting a bit of detail work along the archways, stained glass looking motifs like tiffany windows or frank lloyd wright squares and rectangles or C. R. Mackintosh floralisms.

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Hot Springs

Sitting in the hot springs this afternoon, sunning in the sun, warm waters washing over my being. Cool breeze over perspiration laden skin. Red dragon flies buzzing through the air describe curved spiraling lines that linger in my vision. Reflected ripples of water, on the underside of a boulder overhanging the pool of sulphuric hot spring water, intertwine in accordance to the motions and intimations of the breeze, my movements, and their own echoes. A bead of sweat drips off my chin and taps the surface of the pool, forming concentric circles that merge with the larger ripples. Silence resounds around me in the form of bird songs, rustling leaves, water rippling and rolling, sounds of life drifting through everything: the trees, the rocks, the water, me. I breathe everything in deeply  and exhale everything just the same. I twist and stretch and sit still. I smile and relax. I sigh. I surrender.

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Train II

Station in mexican adobe tile style with
octagonal cupola atop, curved windows
and mosaic designs along pillars and archways
palms and old men
looking like the building has built up around them
standing leaning against the support for support
oblivious to the kids running and playing
and yelling about trains or who said what
maybe you get old enough
you either no longer care who said what
or you care all too much
i'm working on being the former
old women who read magazines
and tan teenagers maybe on their way to LA
or further
to see a friend go to a party
always something different than the story they tell
on their way out the door to mom and dad
we've all been there
done that
the old man and
the little kids
the woman with the magazine
who told a lie about going to the store but instead
drove around the corner to cry
and while i study the congruous angles of the sloping roof lines
and how they interact with the clouds that tuft along in the sky
others lament on phones
wondering when
their train is going to arrive

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Train I

train in the summer time along the california coast
passing an endless beach of turquoise blue water.
endless curls of waves and endless sand - miles -
people dot the beach then exist in swarms then fade
away again
beautiful girls in bikinis
tan fit boys riding waves
sitting like seals doting the snowy white surf
people fading away again and the beach is too short for even people
only odd people remain
little kids wearing black and red wetsuits like a little line of seals
walking along follow the leader don't get washed away
a pile of rocks
a discarded table
another lifeguard tower
small trailer homes along the beach front
very expensive trailer homes
blocking the view of sea
palm trees and bougainvillea
and that endless endless horizon line of blue
punctuated now and again by a speedboat, a freighter ship
an oil drilling barge (now that they open it up again)
and then people again in droves, in front of
houses that get battered by the wind during storm
but warmed by the sun and surf
during these endless
summer days
I love this state.

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On Marriage

Marriage is a spiritual contract not just between two people but between two souls with the whole of the world as witness to their union. This spiritual contract, this union, is based on trust, commitment, admiration and, most of all, love. This love has no fine print, no conditions, and no murky sub-clauses. It is exactly as it is stated. The two souls entering into this union share a trust of each others intentions and motivations. They are committed to each others spiritual growth as well as to their own. They admire the life that each other leads now, has led and will continue to lead. And they love each other as they are, wholly and completely, not as they could be, as they would like them to be or as they once were. When we love another person fully, we extend our boundaries to include them within our sphere of existence. Their growth process becomes our growth process, their failures and triumphs become our own. We allow that their process may be different than ours and that it has gone on long before we ever entered the picture, but as long as that process is healthy and valid, as long as it allows for love, growth and change and does not create discordance of spirit both within and without, we support and engage it with them. When the growth process closes, when the door of the heart seems to shut, we do not turn our backs but, again, offer support, compassion and the challenge to move beyond such obstacles to a more harmonious and loving existence. There is strength in numbers and in the spiritual union of marriage, a container is created for greater growth and deeper spiritual connection, for a broader experience of life than the two spirits here before us have experienced on their own. The goal of a spiritual life is to live in harmony with the world - to rise as the world rises and set as the setting sun, allowing that all things are one, are dependent upon each other and come from and go back to Spirt. It is wise to enter into a union with one who seeks to support such harmony, to spread love and wisdom and to create a wise and compassionate world. The two spirits, Michael and Violet, have deemed it wise, each other fit as well as themselves, to enter into such a union.

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