- 1.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Home
- 2.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – The Gravity of Relationship
- 3.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Light
- 4.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Beyond Voting: Albert and Kristina
- 5.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – The Energy of Summer
- 6.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Zen Koan
- 7.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Looking at Death
- 8.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – The Last Time
- 9.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Stick-to-it-ive-ness
- 10.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Forces of Nature
- 11.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Courage
- 12.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – September 3rd
- 13.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – The Illusion of Time
- 14.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – Finding Voice
- 15.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – A Talk Amongst Rocks
- 16.Conversations with Dead People: A Series – How to be in Conversation with the Universe
Pen to Paper, 20 Minute Writing
Albert Einstein is collecting eggs. Every day now. He figures out when the chickens lay, and shows up in the early afternoon. Today, I find him just as he cracks open a raw egg into his mouth. He doesn’t see me as I watch him pick up the blue egg from the raised nest, open his mouth, hit the egg on his bottom teeth, and pull the two halves apart, allowing the whole egg to drop into his mouth. I clap.
“You did that beautifully,” I offer, walking deep into the garage.
“Thank you. They really do something for me. I hope you don’t mind. I know with winter here, you aren’t getting as many eggs.”
“If eating raw eggs keeps you popping in regularly, you can eat all my eggs! Besides, you should be asking the chickens, not me.” We both laugh as I pull up a bucket. I’d forgotten why I came into the garage to begin with, but I had a burning question for Albert. “I want to explore stick-to-it-ive-ness with you.”
“Okay,” he says, as he steps out of the coop and into the main garage. I step up and give him a long hug. “I love you Kristina!” He squeezes tight and lets go, then sits on my bucket. “That egg was excellent.”
I pull out the green bucket, sit down, and say, “So, your thoughts on stick-to-it-ive-ness?”
“Ah. First, what is it you want to stick to?”
“Saving the world.”
He laughs. A surge of humiliation overcomes my body, heart, brain – all of me. I close my eyes; such a familiar feeling, I think, but rare to feel with Albert.
“Will you look at me?”
I open one eye and Albert and I crack up. Then I burst into tears. “Albert, I’m serious. Humanity. Save. From. Extinction. From the darkness in each of us. You know, look at what we did with the gift you gave us: dropped atomic bombs on each other, for god’s sake.”
Just at that moment, Rumi, our black and white barred rock chicken, jumps up on Albert’s lap. “She loves you, Albert. I can’t get her to sit on my lap. How do you do it?”
“Stick-to-it-ive-ness,” he replies.
“Ahhh. Stick-to-it-ive-ness with a chicken. Is that scalable?”
“I believe it is, Kristina. Think of it this way: your work with photography, filmography, interviews, and social artistry spaces; your inner work and sharing that with others in a way they can enter it where they are; inviting them to embrace joy and suffering, creation and destruction – inside themselves. This is a new language, a language of consciousness. Just like math. Look at how we physicists have been able to co-create with the Universe, using math, using language. It’s time for the language of consciousness to emerge en masse. Stick to it!”
“I like that, creating new language. Wow! I guess that would take some time. I guess my discouragement is often old discouragement and not an accurate reflection of reality. I can move through it!”
“I’d say so!” Albert scratches Rumi’s head. The hen is literally purring.
“Can we go inside, Albert? It’s freezing!” I stand up, put my bucket away, and turn to Albert. He is gone. Only a chicken sits atop the bucket he had occupied a moment ago.
Conversations with Dead People is a series of stories which show up in my meditative practice, Contemplative Writing. With this practice I sit with pen and paper, twenty minutes, and write to a prompt from a meditative space. I share these stories with minimal edits to share the depth, the directness, the deep body sense, I experience with my teachers.
Albert Einstein pops into my writing often, we hang out, giving us both a direct chance to explore the illusion of time. Albert feeds me tremendous encouragement to trust the irresistible urge I have to grieve, and heal, through death.
We also meet Thomas Merton, Georgia O’Keeffe, Carl Jung, and more through this weekly blog, Conversations with Dead People: A Series. Please join us each week.