No one can stop you from loving, They can take away what you hold most dear. They can wound you so deeply you can’t see straight. They can rob you of your cherished possessions, steal your every penny, lie to your face, make you question your own sanity, lock you out of your own house, spit on your beliefs. They can laugh at your mistakes, belittle your intelligence, leave you out of gatherings, invalidate your opinions, call the cops on you for nonsense.

You can decide all people are ridiculous and just give up. You can lock your doors and refuse anyone entrance. The world is a crazy place. No one will blame you. You can refuse to see the good in the world by focusing on evil. Evil is a complicated subject but the bullet is this: it’s been too long in the dark. Shine a bright light on evil, watch it dissipate like a chunk of butter in the sun. We are all capable of atrocity. Our work is to stabilize the scattered energies of our psyche and mold, shape, sculpt our lives into some artful offering for the benefit of others. Appreciate those who love. It’s a brave and courageous choice. They make it look so easy but I assure you, it’s often a considerable effort.

Overcome the obstacles to love (and there are many). At the very least, devote yourself to trying. Let it be said of you, “they shored up a great mountain of love, like some dream of gold or diamonds, and they never once turned anyone away, as un-welcome or un-worthy.”

Love the dark stranger in yourself. The bedeviled, frightened one, you so desperately turn away.

We are, all of us, in need of tender nourishment. Bring them gingerly to the table, and let them eat.

LBM 11/26/2021

table for four, photo by Lori B. McCray