Enough Rain Makes a River by Walter Shawlee 20Edited: Dec. 5, 2005   Page 1
CLICKPrevious Page  Next PageCLICK CLICKPrevious Section  Next SectionCLICK CLICKIntroduction  CLICKEnding
WS3.0 pic, Nelson, BC Enough Rain Makes a River

Text (and some pictures) By:
Walter Shawlee 2

Copyright 1967, 1980, 1986, 1988, 1995, 2005.
All rights reserved.

Pictures By:
Walter Shawlee 3.0

Copyright 2004, 2005 All rights reserved.
Sphere Research Corporation, 3394 Sunnyside Rd., Kelowna, B.C.

Enough Rain Makes a River by Walter Shawlee 20Page 2
CLICKPrevious Page  Next PageCLICK CLICKPrevious Section  Next SectionCLICK CLICKIntroduction  CLICKEnding

WS2 pic, Nelson, BC Poetry has certainly fallen on hard times in North America. People used to know Robert Frost, Ogden Nash, Leonard Cohen, e.e. cummings, William Carlos Williams, Rod McKuen, or someone else at least casually.

Today they know the Coke or Pepsi jingle, or possibly have committed the opening lines of Star Trek to memory. This seems like a very poor turn of events to me.

I think that poetry has a special abbreviated power all its own that serves us very well. At this point, however, I certainly wouldn't mind if it was called something else, since it seems to have come into such considerable disfavor with just about everyone. The "Poetry" section in Chapters is one tiny four foot high bookshelf, with hardly anything on it.

People often seem to be deterred from reading poems because they feel (or far worse, are made to feel by others) that they don't really understand what they are reading. This is especially unfortunate because poems only come to life in the light of your own interpretation and experience. There are no larger issues of wrong or right in this material, and the interpretation you find on your own is fine with me, so enjoy yourself here. If you didn't get what I intended, then that was strictly my fault.

My own experience has been that shorter explanations often seem to be better, which is how I came to write in this particular way. If a word like "poem" offends you, or makes you feel less of a man, somewhat effeminate and emasculated, then think of these as very short essays or stories; or possibly as the sound tracks of commercials, if you're not much of a regular reader.

There is a slight chronological order to these, but they are also grouped by related events, if that's any help in their decoding. Actually, now that I think of it, they are really a bit random, time-wise.

Since I ran into quite a few problems, some of which wound up here, you may find something of real use to you personally. Some people find comfort in knowing they are not the only one to have troubles. Frankly, it's hard to be cheered by the knowledge that not only you, but countless unknown others, are going to sink in any given boat. Just keep in mind that God has quite a sense of humor,

Enough Rain Makes a River by Walter Shawlee 20Page 3
CLICKPrevious Page  Next PageCLICK CLICKPrevious Section  Next SectionCLICK CLICKIntroduction  CLICKEnding

if you feel your tenuous perspective slipping away. It's also important to remember that God isn't finished yet.

We are not monolithic and seamless. We show everyone different things, give them more or less access to our hearts and thoughts. We are each a thousand different people, every version tailored for the person we are meeting at the moment, because no other behavior is possible. No matter what we show, other people can only see some things, and never see others, and we reflect that in the same moment. Some see the box, some see the contents, and others worry about how it was made or where it comes from, and see the least of all.

Every so often, we show everything to someone, and they see it all, and return that generosity back. That's the moment, that state of tenderness, that explains what life is for, why we are in it, and what our part is. It's where strength comes from, and what love is built on. The greatest tragedy is that the moment eludes some people all their lives, and they live in the emptiest kind of sadness, unaware how close escape has always been, sometimes only a few words or looks away. We choose everything, but often never realize that it happened.

Most of these are like picture frames, waiting for you to fill them in with your own private thoughts and feelings. I hope they give you some pleasure or pause while you go through them.

Special thanks to my son (Walter Shawlee 3.0) who took many of the photographs (and certainly the best ones) in this book. He has a great eye, and a good heart. And to my daughter Rosanne, who has the best laugh in the world, and always cheers me up.

Walter Shawlee 2

WS2, Kelowna, B.C.

Enough Rain Makes a River by Walter Shawlee 20Page 4
CLICKPrevious Page  Next PageCLICK CLICKPrevious Section  Next SectionCLICK CLICKIntroduction  CLICKEnding

WS2 pic, Nelson, BCThe haiku and other oriental poems reproduced here have come from a variety of translators, Ho-yen's comes from D. T. Suzuki's excellent and extraordinary book "Zen Buddhism". Since I have read at least two differing translations for most of these poems, I hope I have remembered the ones with the best sense of the original author, as I felt it.

The line from J. R. R. Tolkein is from his "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, and is also written in his book as:

"elen sila lumenn omentilmo"

My wife, Suzie, had it inscribed on a ring for me years ago. After 34 years, I still think it's true.

The lines from my father's book (Only Lovers Know) are taken from the poem of the same name, and are the closing five lines of the book.

The quote from Mel Webster is from one of his science classes in the late sixties, which I am sure none of his students ever forgot.

Some people have also had a very great influence on me either personally, or indirectly, and I see traces of them in these pages, my wife's being the deepest.

Robert A. Heinlein, Jerry Severeid, D. T. Suzuki, Taj Mahal, Kim and Alice Badrkhan, D. H. Lawrence, Bonnie Raitt, Hermann Hesse, Eric Frank Russell, Holly Sparks, Gwen Voorhees, Mel Webster, Al Singer, Bob Pitters, Jerry Cutler, Jesse Vasquez, Charmaine Kadley, Rod McKuen, Lois Young, Van Morrison, Danny Leonette, Magan Bensow, Sten Nilsson, Dan Wheeler, Bertil Gustaffson, Keith Laumer, Lasse Smedlund, Jack Hartman, Kahlil Gibran, Ronnie Brittian, Scott and Rena Kaplan, Chris Loelke, Bart Braverman, Eric Nadler, Sandy Bull, Scott and Johnny Davis, all three of my parents , my sister Angela, and especially my uncle Ted, who gave me the best and most important advice of my life.

Thank you all. No matter what any of you imagine, I never forgot any of you, even though we are certainly far apart now.

CLICKPrevious Page  Next PageCLICK CLICKPrevious Section  Next SectionCLICK CLICKIntroduction  CLICKEnding
Text, HTML and some images copyright 1967-2005 by Walter Shawlee 2/Sphere Research Corporation, all rights reserved.
Some images copyright 2004-2005 by Walter Shawlee 3.0/Bridgeworks Photography, all rights reserved.

Download this entire book as a PDF or as a zipped HTML file. Caution, these are very large files, over 25Mb!
The archives do not contain these recursive downloads, they must be downloaded individually to re-assemble the entire site.