The Rich Vegetarian

An Examined Life

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And Life Exists Where?

And where does life exist, really?

In the daily routines and rituals,
checklists and calendars and errands and shopping lists,
weekend classes, gym schedules, drop off and pick up, buy milk and groceries and bread.

time to meet friends and family, it is Diwali and then Christmas

In the chopping of vegetables and taking out of trash,
cooking and cleaning and dishes and laundry and lawn tasks.

In marking time on iPhones and paper desk calendars and Outlook.

Or in the endless time stretching infinitely in my mind, in my head,
Wondering where the waves go, the seas part, the wind drops, and the birds call out
Wondering about the horizon and the space it spans, the sky and the blue depths above and below.

the quiet beaches in my mind, miles of sand, not a soul around

thoughts arise and subside, the elements bearing witness to my endless ideas and imaginations,

and then it’s back to chopping vegetables again.

Is it in between, in both, nowhere?

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The World that Beckons

There’s a world that beckons inward,
A space of quiet, non-threatening, plain and clean

I started going there as a child, I think?
I felt non-judged, felt like myself
(Whatever “myself” meant at that point in space and time)

I thought everyone had this kinda place
Surely, everyone needed it?

It took me a while before I got it:
That space was my own, my gift, a place I crafted for myself, maybe before I was even born
For refuge, for respite, a place to sleep and dream and let the tears flow

I still go there
every day
It is my own

And I like its neutrality

As a child, I felt it welcoming
Now I appreciate neutrality even more

Walls are pale grey-blue
Air flows in and out
There are windows, but none really
I feel the sun, the light and warmth

I hear the water

Is it a beach? A silent forest? Atop a mountain?

Are those clouds floating by, misting over?

Birdsong, chai, sounds of silence.

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I fell in love, I just did

Dearest, I love you not because you are kind or smart. Or sensitive or creative. I love you, I just do. I fell in love in a very illogical/unreasonable way, I just did, and the reasons revealed themselves later. I do think that the reasons make you seem like a smart, kind, good guy. Perhaps you are one. Or not. It does not seem to matter.

I fell in love in a way that is silly to explain. “I love you because…. because… because.” It is stupid, it really is! I fell in love, and it just happened on its own. If I had a list of qualities I was checking off, then I’d probably not have picked you. The truth is that I never had a list. Now that I am truly/madly/deeply in love, I can make a good, solid list. I can share it with young lovers.

“Make sure he is kind. Notice the little things he does. Is he rude to waiters? Is he impatient?” And so on.

Was I checking mentally as we went through the motions of love-courtship-romance? Perhaps, a silent corner of my heart kept relaying “good, good” to me all the time. No alarm bells rang, no red flags popped up. And I was satisfied.

I fell in love so simply, I just did. I put all mental math out of the equation. I fell in love, then made up the reasons afterward. And you know what? I bet you did the same. And of course, I wanted to let everyone know that I am a smart cookie, and I picked well. Even in love, I am smart! Not reckless or foolish! But that’s all hindsight, 20/20, etc. In reality, love or attraction made all the choices. My intellect took a backseat. It observed silently, putting in a word every now and then, but not much.

Darling, it is my love that made you the perfect guy. It’s my love that elevated you, made you smart and kind and special and intelligent and sensitive.

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