It’s been a while since I thought seriously about “spiritual discipline.”  I’ve been so preoccupied by Marshall’s and my interactions, attitudes, and needs … and by the demands of school … and the management of my own insecurities.  Quite.  So much of my life has seen this pattern: my need for peace and wisdom finally breaking the surface tension of all those other concerns and reticences, and I get over myself and my million anxieties, and I become still.  And this stillness is like water for someone dying of thirst.  Sometimes (like this morning, and yesterday afternoon) I hold myself as still on the couch as I can, the gentle rigidity of my spine releasing other branching muscles, letting them billow in some imaginary wind like scarves.

After reading Franz Wright’s line, “Are we beheld?” and tumbling off some kind of solitary tower, realizing that I have been living as if I am not beheld, realizing that every one of my motions this semester has been seen by God, I’ve been progressing.

Progressing.  Knowing — believing — that God considers me with affection and attentiveness makes all the difference, for me.  One of my “defining wounds,” if I can use another odd Christianese expression, is abandonment, and my huge and enveloping fear of abandonment by friends often moves itself on into the future by trying to preclude that possibility.  Marshall and I were talking about this last night.  This means I don’t get close to new friends, I don’t forgive the ones that hung me out to dry, and I also go on to shoring up my heart/mind in case God also shrinks into a cool distance.  In retrospect, it seems kind of like prettying up a cellar bomb shelter.  Hanging out in there inordinate amounts of time.  Putting up drywall, stockpiling gallon jugs of water.  And this is all subconscious you know.  But learning (again) that I’m befriended by God — anyway.  This is the only revelation that can draw me out of my cave, and I’m working on believing it more often, more fully.

In other news, I tried P90X yoga for the first time yesterday, and I mostly got through the first thirty minutes.  Problem: my left hand.  I’ve had some kind of joint issue somewhere in that knot of carpals or metacarpals for a couple of years, now, but I so rarely have to flex my left hand backward that it’s never seemed to be a big deal.  Only when I want to do yoga is it a big deal.  And I so want to do this yoga video throughout the winter and get really good.

In more news, Christmas.  Christmas Day will be the half-year mark for me and Marshall, and I have to say, a six-month anniversary celebration no longer seems like a dumb thing to do.  Being married for six months is a big deal.  When I was in college, and somewhat after, the vastness of staying married seemed too huge a weight for most people to hold.  That vastness has shrunk a little, since I’ve begun that journey of staying married, myself, and that’s both a relief and a warning: to be aware, be mindful, be careful with love.  We hope, and tend our garden, and hope more.  The raveled ends of relationships surround us, right now, and we allow those griefs to change us.  At any rate, I’m writing poems about us, now, about our gestures toward each other, our intimacies in arguments and in sex, and I’m so glad that they are finally coming.  I tried to write in those first couple months and — maybe that was too soon, anyway — nothing really came.  The words are now coming.  I so wish I could post here this one amazing (if I say so myself) poem I wrote this week — aughh it’s so good!! — but it’s a little too explicit for this forum.  Man, but I am so proud of it.  Although usually the poems I’m really proud of initially turn into lumps of mud when I reread them six months later.  Well.