Monday, September 6, 2010

A Man of Honor and Dignity

We've all seen the inside, the outside, and the harsh realities of modern life. We can easily find ourselves disconnected from our work, from our families, even from the Earth itself. We have mostly lost the village community that has been our natural heritage ever since that first Sapien rose upright and threw that bone into outer space.

So, we spend our lives trying to counteract the dissolutions of the industrial revolution, the ravages of slavery, the insanity of fascism, the false promises and prophets of capitalism. The natural response is simply to build an extended family that fills the ancient needs, to create something of value that is not connected to a mass marketing strategy or a political agenda, to reach back for something that is already loaded into our souls, a golden thread that keeps our own from drifting into the easy darkness and ties us instead into a human whole that can grow and flourish as we are all meant to do. Any spark can ignite the tender of a community, any art form, any form of reverence, any shared passion can do the trick. For an ever-growing number of souls here in central Kansas, that spark has been any old thing with strings on it, any song, old or new, that tells the truth of our joys and sorrows. And the capitol of that state of bliss, the village square of that ancient town, the glowing hearth of that perfect home is a little pub on North Broadway in Wichita, Kansas with the incongruous name of a vegetable not served on the premises.

But we forgive these shortcomings among family members. We gaze instead into the heart of that hearth, and look around us to see what bits of wood we can bring to the fire.

The blaze will be flaring up from noon to midnight on Saturday, June 5, at the above mentioned iconic sandwich bar. The man behind the bar, as always, will be Patrick Audley. What started out to be a benefit to cover mounting medical expenses has turned out to be a celebration of a man who has put on dozens of benefits for others, who has carefully walked hundreds of troubled young men into adulthood, and who has unfailingly supported any folk musician that has ever made their way to his door. Any follower of this list knows that I occasionally suggest events of special interest, but today I must go beyond suggestion. I must frankly insist that anyone who has ever felt the encompassing glow of that simple room, has ever felt the power and passion of this simply human music, has ever relished a #8 and a "ruby red", is required by the rules of karma to give something back to someone who has given us so much.

How we connect to our passion unites us; how we build our community inspires us; how we support the ones we love defines us.

Bring the love. And your checkbook,

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