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Out of many, One

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The latest episode of Hampshire Independent's "Independent Full Gospel Hour," narrated by the world's foremost living radical pantheist, a progressive missionary to the conservative heathens in the hills and hollers of Hampshire County, West Virginia.


Yoga class was cancelled yesterday morning due to icy roads. So since I don't have any late-breaking metaphysical bulletins to report, the cosmic clash of East and West, Hindu vs. Radical Pantheist, will give way to perhaps less exotic fare in this installment of "Independent Full Gospel Hour."


(I say "perhaps" because, in all honesty, I never know what fabulous ancient ruins I'll encounter in my splendid little journeys down the paradisial streams of consciousness, delightfully snaking through this errant child of God's mental wilderness. But who knows? It may turn out to be as pedantic as the everyday imperial mindpulp now haunting the cyberlands of our fascist social Matrix. Now that's some boring doodoo--the cheery propaganda pablum of ever-grinning post-ironic imperial broadcast scribes.)


(You can probably tell we don't get cable.)


I actually couldn't go to yoga class anyway, because my cat, Elizabeth, was stuck up in our walnut tree. We had been freaked that, since we hadn't seen her around the night before, her absence at breakfast was bringing reality to the very gates of our worry (I actually get that from my mother; I can be ten minutes late getting to her house and she's already got me with half my fingernails removed by some sadistic Arab somewhere. I'm glad I meditate as compensation. She's a Republican, as if you didn't know).


Anyway, I'm coming in the back door from wandering the spread on my morning chores round, when I hear this plaintive cry, and I know immediately it's Elizabeth. (All the cats have different voices, and each breed its own dialect. But cats rarely will allow a human to hear their real language, which they only speak openly in their own company. I've only overheard it twice in my life (I will never forget the time they suddenly realized I was listening, and they immediately shut up; that was spooky). It is truly a fascinating tongue. You can hear snips of it when they're trying to talk a bird into flying into their mouth, but that's pretty simple stuff, really--equivalent to "Here, birdy, birdy." Their true language is hieroglyphically complex.)


So I hear Elizabeth's cry, and I immediately answer with her name, because I can't tell where the cry came from. I first thought it was under the house. She cried again and I answered again, because now I knew she was outside. She cried a third time and I thought--what the you-know-what?--because this time it sounded like it was coming from midair--which made absolutely zero friggin sense to my customarily Cartesian analytical thought processes. You know what I'm talking about.


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Michael Hasty wrote a column for 7 years at the Hampshire Review, West Virginia's oldest newspaper, named "best column" in 2000 by the WV Press Association. His writings have appeared at hundreds of websites, including Online Journal, Common (more...)

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