Sunday, August 17, 2008

cheap wine and the sands of time

cheap wine always reminds me of churches. everyone i know has always got a bad word about churches, and i agree, for the most part. nobody talks about the spiritual kind of envelopment that happens. i remember being an acolyte, holding the decanters of wine and holy water, and the hush over the procession, stained glass windows scattering winks and blinks of light everywhere, the wooden altar, the creaking chairs. it gave me the kind of awe that i think that i am too jaded to know now, except for rare moments in music. it was transcendent. when you really believe, it's incredible. not that i wish to go back to that, or even to adopt an agnostic standpoint to be able to indulge myself in that holy procession again- it wouldn't work. what's done is done. god does not exist. but when i was a kid, for a little while, i really thought the whole thing was real. you could pray, and your husband could come back to life, the sun could stand still, angels with swords of fire fought the demons of the underworld, and it was ageless. today i still stop and think about those rituals, and the reverence, and its de facto respect. it wasn't something you could or could not take seriously, because it was beyond that. it was a process handed down from generation to generation, and there isn't any of that anymore.
i guess when i think of church as a child it embodies the old traditions that are so rare now- heirlooms, legacies.