The following post can be summarized with this poem.
[Close your eyes Fall in love stay there.]
-Claire Michelle from Plantifulsoul
Later into the twilight, past where I usually stop, I ventured into the flow. Being part of that flow, the telling of this story follows the excitement I feel now for the experience I had then.
I was internally shaking my head, though trying not to do so outwardly, at the shear surprise of what had just happened.
Man sits down without saying a word. Not all that unusual. Looks at me, and I him. An intensity in his eyes and softness in his voice. “I’m going to play you my band’s album.”
The wording he used, he did say ALBUM, quickly becomes important. Takes phone out, music starts. Eeeyyaaauuugghhhhh!" da-dum-da-dum” "Crash!" It becomes clear to me this is going to be screamo. No one had ever played music at before, and especially not THIS kind. Aiyeeeee-yeowwww!! Thoughts going through my head, “Oh my god, am I really going to have to listen to this entire album.” I sway my head to the beat trying to focus on the pleasant sounds. Then MORE SCREAMING. Luckily the man with a beard and intense eyes is with a group so he’s encouraged to end the listening session after the song ends. Then he says the only other words I’ll hear him speak. “Thank you.” “You’re welcome.” Walks away.
At this point in the day, and it was still the daytime, Sreamo was the first experience.
Around this time there is a conversation being had, though I didn’t know it. I’d meet both members of this conversation seconds after it ended. The hypothetical conversation, I imagine, went something like this.
“I want to give him a hug,” a girl says to a guy. “So do it,” guy says to girl.
The girl, I’d find out is showing her friend around “the only place she knows” in San Diego, Balboa Park, a place she had not been in ten years. This is a gal would later refer to San Diego as a “town.” I love the transformation of something that seems overwhelmingly big to something quaint by the clever changing of words. What if our cities were “towns.” How would things be different?
Guy and girl were going to stay in her town an hour away but decided to come here instead. The guy, who was visiting, or as it turns our plotting his escape from somewhere in Virginia, had met her in college. It seemed they hadn’t seen it each in a while.
“I don’t know if it’s weird.” “I’ll come with you.” End hypothetical conversation.
Begin actual events.
“Mary” and…? “Frank.” Cool, “Mary and Frank” Hugs initiated and greetings exchanged.
Discussion about how the members of our families have similar names.
A series of curious questions and answers from me to them and them to me.
At some point, after explaining that it might be weird and I should feel free to decline, Mary makes an offering. “Can I pull a card on you?” She explains a little about how she’s been getting back into tarot card reading and she gives me a heart shaped crystal, which she explains is significant because. . .
Me excitedly bouncing around in my seat like a 1st grader, saying “yes, yes, please!”
I shuffled a deck and pulled ten cards that she would arrange in significant order that told her things...
... about me, that would turn out to be potently true.
Into the scene comes Danny, who’s been in the flow for three days since he left Savannah on a one way ticket. He pulled up on his skateboard and sat down on it cross legged like a mediation pillow.
“I saw you and I knew you were my people,” said Danny, who every once in a while would blurt out loud affirmation phrases beginning with I AM . . .
We talked about glitter bombing the most serious people we know. We had a lot of great ideas like these.
Mary pulled cards on Danny as well. It was illuminating to witness what had just happened to me happen to another person. I listened to this reading, and harnessed the phrases and words that stuck with me, and grabbed my yellow pad instinctively, writing these words down in different fonts and arrangements, adding images of stars and big, bold exclamation points, underlining certain words, circling others, and even changing the orientation of the letters in words on the page to create diagonals and zig zags.
Mary asked me to do one of these shape/word drawings in her sacred pages. “I want to see it in there.” How good it felt to be recognized in this way.
“I knew this journal was going to be special when I got it,” Mary said after I relinquished it from the grip of my Namaste hands, having held it to the sky, clutched it against my chest, and then sealed it with a kiss on the embroidered cover.
“Do you want to read it now or later,” i said offering it back to her. “I guess later would be best, right, like you do? She said referring to how I read some of the guest entries in the Free Listening experience log, which is always at the Free Listening display, later after I get home, sometimes days.
In case she hasn’t read it yet but is reading this, i do not want to give away the thoughts inscribed on those journal pages.
I believe, as I kissed that journal, the image I was kissing was a tree, a symbol that came up a few times in our my tarot card reading, which reached in many directions, like branches of a tree.
All these branches of experiences recalled here stemmed from one root. Free Listening.
Before Danny, it was Mary and Frank, who turned out to be middle-namers, those whose Facebook ‘last’ name is really their middle name. You know like that friend who is changes there profile and there name pops up and you’re like “who da f#$% is Katharine Ann….then you see their face and you’re like “who you hiding from?”
After Danny left the situation, following his intuition in another direction, it was again, the three of us.
Earlier in our conversation, I tried explaining to the middle namers, after
Frank asked me the amazing question, “has anything you’ve experienced moved you."
What I said was that I notice that all humans are so similar despite outwardly appearing different.
Like how when you look at one thing long enough, you start to see other things in it, because there are only so many patterns nature and therefore as part of nature, humanity displays.
Basically my biggest takeaway is that we are all one, despite our differences, we have much more in common than we see at first glance. This is why eye-gazing is so amazing, because you will literally fall in love with anyone, if you look into their eyes for 4 minutes without speaking. And the crazy part is, not many people, not even most lovers have tried this.
Being heard is so much bigger than words.
Even though the symbol I put on my free listening sign is an ear, I’m also“hear” for the people who pass by, shooting a smile my way or a laugh or simply giving a mild, if unnoticeable nod. Even if that nod is simply a flicker in their eyes, a slight accentuation of their dimples, a small relaxation in their facial expression, I’m “hear” for them as well.
I’ve learned that heard people are beautiful creatures. I consider my day to be a success if i seldom see a frown.
At free listening you seldom see a frown.
You get a lot of experience though. I know, you’re probably still wondering about enchilada poetry:
Here it is (thank you Sean and to his significant other for the encouragement to share the beautiful gem):
Enchiladas are so nice They have a lot of spice They’re my Dad’s favorite food When he’s in the right mood But with it he’d like some rice.