Greetings to you all. The theme for this month is Journey. I’m reminded of a few things when I think of the word Journey. One of course is the rock band from the decade of the 1980’s, and how in my wife’s and my early life together, we would go with some friends of ours to karaoke every Friday night. The guy who hosted this at our favorite bowling alley was named Ed, and when there was a lull in people who had signed up to sing, he would stand up and belt out a Journey tune, usually the song Separate Ways. I think he especially liked the last word in that song, a long and loud, “NOOOOOOO!!!” I’m also reminded of our wedding, where Helen Boucek, who had worked with Joseph Campbell when he taught in Pittsburgh, read a poem titled Ithaca by C. P. Cavafy. It reads, in part:
Hope your road is a long one.
May there be many summer mornings when,
with what pleasure, what joy,
you enter harbors you’re seeing for the first time;
may you stop at Phoenician trading stations
to buy fine things,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
sensual perfume of every kind—
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
and may you visit many Egyptian cities
to learn and go on learning from their scholars.
How these things relate to each other, I believe, is that sometimes in life, it’s easy to get caught up in the latest political goings on in Washington, or Springfield, or what our latest teams seem to be, or not, doing and lurching ever forward into the next minute without taking some time to put our phones in our pockets, shut off the computers and take a look around at what nature has to offer. It might be hard to appreciate when it’s 10 degrees with a wind chill, but here’s to hoping in the month of March we’ll finally see the snow melt, the sun will feel warm on our faces again, and we’ll be able to stop and bear witness to the earth coming alive again. Even if that means you might have to smack a mosquito or two along the way. Be it through nature, poetry, or music, I hope you all are able to take a few moments on your journey to Ithaca to see the sights along the way.
The Almost Rev. Kevin DeBeck