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Thunder and Lightning

Today’s musing was about the majesty of summer thunderstorms. I do love them. I love the cool breeze in the midst of the hot evenings. I love the wind and the rain. It all makes me feel, as the song goes, “strangely alive.”

And yet, in my musing on my musing, I have to reflect on the changing weather patterns and the incredibly dangerous storms that are sweeping our country. In Central PA tornadoes were every 25 year occurrences. Now we’re frequently under warning. last year, 60 yards south of my brother-in-spirit’s house a tornado ripped out trees and off roofs. (and that was before the 100 year flood.) since then we’ve been on tornado watch quite a few times. So, I probably need to consider and refine my stance on greenhouse gasses and my casual consumption.

And I also remembered, only after pressing the send button, that I have a friend whose brother was struck by lightening. Everyone’s lives in that family changed in that instant. So the glory is tempered by the reality. And there’s the need always in my writing to keep pushing deeper until the essence is there and as many wounding edges as possible are removed.

When Utah Phillips was developing a story, at a certain point, he would take that story to his committee, a group of (hooray) Unitarian women, who would help him pick out the essence of what was funny and eliminate the denigrating. After a while he didn’t need them so much, because picking stuff apart stretches your awareness.

So, what’s the take away? The thrill is real. The thrilling is dangerous. The dangers seem to be increasing. And the dangerous really is dangerous and can change lives in a heartbeat.  And the poet needs to keep stretching the gift…