Life opens to us through simple things. This time a phrase read in a speech. Recently a friend spoke
of being "on this mortal coil" and I looked it up. Looking things up in the twenty first century is easy.
We just pull out phones. We don't even need to spell correctly. "This mortal coil" is, then,
a Shakespearean world of burdens, strife and trouble. According to Wikipedia, while alive we carry or abandon it. At
death we "shuffle [it] off."
But God can't. He's got
the "whole mortal coil in his hands."
I am still pondering how we can
be "on" the coil. It seems we can "carry" it, or, "abandon" it. But to be on it
brings to my mind balancing on a Slinky.
In my church going youth in a small Ohio village, we'd sing a song about God having the whole world in his
hands. My mirthful mind pictured the whole world of people piled together like cheerleaders' pyramids. People of the
"whole world" standing on the shoulders of the next. Although I had only a glimmer of knowledge that there
were "whole worlds of people" of different languages, colors and customs than mine, I imagined piled people from
all over my small classroom's map. God (a slim man with large hands) just languidly balanced us all there. All
of our worldly sniping and snarling at each other--"Hey! Keep yer balance, dammit!"--did not faze God. Now,
because I work as a public middle school counselor, I can almost see God rolling his eyes. He doesn't of course because
he's God. He just patiently carries this mortal coil of his call humanity.
(a corpulent woman with medium sized hands) am not as patient as God. I want to pull my hands in and put them in pockets.
Keep them warm. Get on with helping others with their mortal coils. My children, for example. Spirited
independent children. Their adulthood is just beginning. Please God, don't roll your eyes when I ask that their mortal
coils loosely wrap them!
My cold chapped hands, though, carry an exasperating coil of
mortal workplace harassment. I have frightened educators piled in my hands. I put my virtual hands out through A Piece
Full World (www.apiecefullworld.com) and they piled in. They don't have support from their school districts or their unions.
They're from all over my childhood's classroom map, particularly the United States of America. Many from Florida where
I work in the tip of that sunny peninsula.
But there's an education harassment
hurricane brewing in that sunny place.
"Leave it alone." I've
been told as I look for help with my educator people pile. "Move on. You're safe now. Put your damn hands in your damn
pockets. Keep them warm. You don't owe anyone anything. GO ON A DIET! Take care of yourself. You have no
obligation to that helpless heap. God's got it.
Or just say your abuser's name. Say it to newspapers and TV shows. Now's the time, dear
hard working, honest, corpulent Kim. You need your hands to hold weights instead of piled people. Saying his name might just
release you and them. The time is right. Say it and see. Show someone somewhere all of the disgusting public records.
See what happens to your mortal coil. Maybe you can "shuffle
it off" before you die.
Please God, don't roll your eyes.