Some Things Are Worth Paying For

I believe that some of the most beautiful and worthwhile things in life cost just a little bit more. Almost always they come with a high price of personal sacrifice and hard work--but sometimes they require a selfless sacrifice from many.
As I heard about all of the tax protests earlier this week, I couldn't help but think of this girl in Ohio and all of the hard work she has put in so that she can have just a little ray of sunshine in her life.
The truth is, our tax dollars often fund the arts. And if we get all bent out of shape over paying taxes and demand cuts--the arts are often the first things to go. The one small piece of beauty in this girl's life will be the first thing to go.
So please, before we all get in a huff about things, let's stop and consider what we'll be losing as a whole, as a society and as a culture, if we allow the selfish demands of our individual pocketbooks to take control.

Watch: Ohio Serenade (come on, it's only eight minutes long)

Your thoughts?
(But please, if you care to comment, at least take the time to watch the short clip in question.)


Dolores lay quietly weeping in bed--her warm tears filled the wrinkled corners of her eyes before cascading down the sides of her face and into her thin white hair matted on the hospital pillow.
An angel had been sent to comfort her, but Dolores continued to feebly press the red call button she held tightly clutched with both hands. She was convinced that the majestically beautiful messenger at her side was yet another one of her frequent hallucinations brought on by advanced dementia.
Often, she knew when she was hallucinating and would quietly close her eyes and hum until the visions departed.
She clicked the red button again.
She was afraid of yielding to the dementia, but seeing that she was alone, she licked her dry lips and ever so softly exhaled the question:
"Why are you here?"
The angel said nothing, but smiled gently and gazed back at her with kind eyes full of understanding. She was surprised to see that the angel was beginning to weep.
"You pressed the call button?" came the reply from the foot of her bed. "What can I help you with?"
It was the nurse. Her cheeks were flushed red after being outside in the cold on her smoke break.
"Is my daughter here yet?" asked Dolores, her eyelashes still wet and glistening.
The nurse only looked puzzled and cleared her throat. Her mouth frowned.

Just after the nurse left, the angel knelt at Dolores' side and whispered something so softly and delicately in her ear that she could scarcely make it out. The tears continued to roll down the sides of her soft leather cheeks and she clutched the red call button with both hands.


Robert grasped the stainless steel railings glimmering in the bright afternoon sun and hoisted himself up onto the diving board. The artificially blue pool water below heaved and rippled as it swallowed the scrawny pink body of the the boy who had just sprung from the low dive beneath him.
Robert remembered how his grandmother had taught him about Jesus--about how he had walked on water. She said he had done all of his miracles by the power of faith.
She drew him up into her arms: "If you believe enough," she had whispered in his ear, "there's nothing you couldn't do."
He took a few steps forward and found himself precariously suspended high above the water, gently bobbing up and down on the warbling tip of the board.
He wondered if he could put one foot in front of the other and walk off the edge without falling.
He closed his eyes; felt the wet grit of the board beneath his feet, the smell of chlorine, and the sound of splashing which seemed so, so far below him.
He stretched his arms, lowered his head, bent his knees, and pressed his all of his meager weight down into the board before allowing it to rebound and return the energy he had lent it. His legs became pistons as they straightened--hips, knees, ankles, arches, toes. Finally, he felt his feet leave the sandpaper surface.
And then there was silence. He hung perfectly suspended between the rippling blue crystal below and the bottomless depth of the sky above. Everything slowed, and for a split second, he understood.
It was only after he opened his eyes again that he realized he had been falling.
He hit the water in a flailing crash before it engulfed and cradled him in it's quiet heavy blueness. It pulled him closer and whispered in his ear. And there beneath the surface he continued to float--suspended between the horizons.


Last night I dreamt I was a ghost inside your house
admiring you invisibly
--unable to speak, feel, touch, or be heard.
But then you noticed the sandy footprints I had tracked inside the house
and threw me out.