Two years ago today Steve died.

My antennas are on high alert. During a recent dinner conversation, someone formed his fingers into the shape of a revolver and held it up to his jaw, to illustrate some concept he was talking about. Immediately bright images flashed by my inner eye about Steve’s murder and his last moments. It took the greatest determination not to lose it completely. Two years today it happened: my personal and heartbreaking representation of the evil, sickness, and violence that is alive in the world every single day. 730 days ago.

With Steve, life was filled with laughter, a sense of adventure, companionship, tenderness and love, lots of love. Now, without him, one day at a time I am finding new ways to create these qualities by myself, stepping back further and further from the edge of despair and hopelessness. My personal grief is melting into the ocean of our collective grief for the world.

On this occasion, please take a moment of reflection: the extent of our commonplace figures of speech is confronting, as I write and re-read this, and especially given what happened to Steve two years ago, and just now in Las Vegas, and so many other places everywhere.

Snapshot

The opening shot
A warning shot
Sure as shooting
Shoot from the hip

A shot in the dark
Shoot down someone
Down some shots
Like a shot
Give it a shot

Take a shot of someone
A shot in the dark
Cheap shot
It’s worth a shot

Shooting for gold
Straight shooter
Have a shot at something
Shotgun wedding
Shoot your wad
It’s a long shot

Shot to pieces
Crapshoot
Shot in the foot
Call the shots
Big shot

Shoot off at the mouth
A parting shot
Sure as shooting
Like shooting fish in a barrel

Shoot the bull
Like a shot
The upshot
It’s shot
Hotshot

“You have to learn to live without violence in such a violent world. It is difficult to live sanely in an insane world but that is the only life there is and one has to find one’s way to live through it. All that we can do is to never become violent against violence, because that is not going to help. Have deep compassion. If one has to suffer, one should suffer through compassion.
And people who are violent are completely unaware; they don’t know what they are doing.  […]

So one can pray, one can love, and one can have compassion, but the violence is there. And you cannot change it, because the world is so big; how can you change it? One has to accept it. And you can go on doing whatsoever one can do on one’s own — a little bit, whatsoever one can spread. Spread your love.

The world is like a desert but even if you can sow a single seed and only two flowers come to it, even that is something. In this vast desert land if two flowers or even a single flower comes up, that too is good.” ~Osho, The Open Secret, A Darshan Diary

23 replies
  1. Judy Hancock Holland
    Judy Hancock Holland says:

    These anniversaries are hard. My heart goes out to you, Lokita, in love and admiration for the way you are walking your path. It’s hard for me to believe it’s 2 years since we lost Steve. He’d be so proud of you and how you are taking each new step. Namaste.

    Reply
  2. Celeste
    Celeste says:

    Stunningly eye opening. Thank you Lokita. My mother took her life with a handgun (we were not a gun family) when I was 16 and something in me had hardened off along the way to the reality and horror of gun violence as well as the commonplace vernacular surrounding it. I have certainly been known to use nearly all the colloquialisms you have highlighted here. Today my understanding deepens and my heart opens a little more with your compassionate, non-judgmental writing on this topic.

    Reply
  3. Diane
    Diane says:

    I remember the moment I heard the tragic news. My heart is with you today, Dear Lokita! I continue to admire your courage and healing journey.

    Reply
  4. melantha
    melantha says:

    My heart, love and sweetness are with you today and every day dear Lokita. Thank you, as always, for your thoughts and wisdom. ❤️

    Reply
  5. Emily
    Emily says:

    Thank you.

    As I watch the Blue Angels circle in the sky above the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in Golden Gate Park below I remember the day in October when we lost Steve.

    Tonight the Harvest Moon will shine and again I will think of him. And you.

    Thank you for sharing your journey.

    Reply
  6. Samvada Hilow
    Samvada Hilow says:

    Sending you love and hope that sanity and love will prevail and put an end to this easy access to deadly weapons. 💕🙏

    Reply
  7. Lucy Greenway
    Lucy Greenway says:

    Rest In Peace Steve. We miss you. And thank you Lokita for keeping us grounded and for opening our hearts to the wonders of love and healing.

    Reply
  8. Wahila
    Wahila says:

    The anniversaries are so painful. Reawakening feelings that were partly slumbering. Sending you so much love as you go through these early ones. They are particularly rough. Hoping for you days filled with joy and laughter, a sense of companionship and a longing for the love that will fill your future.

    Reply
  9. Summer
    Summer says:

    Thank you for the reminder of the power of the words we choose to use.

    Loving you, loving Steve, and trying to keep my heart open to others, all others.

    Reply
  10. Triambika
    Triambika says:

    Every time I see a post from you I stop and read it. Because your words take me right to the core of your heart. I feel you so deeply. And my heart wants to leap forward to hold you and to hold all of us who knew and loved Steve. These moments are hard. Thank you for the grace with which you allow us to feel you. Sending much love.

    Reply
  11. Tandy
    Tandy says:

    Lokita,

    Tho you don’t know me, I drive over the every day and believe me, I was thinking of you. I am so proud of you and how far you have come. God Bless you and Coco. We think of you both often and love to see you progress through all you diversities. You my woman are some one we should all look up too.
    love you and keep the post coming

    Reply
  12. Katalina Fisher
    Katalina Fisher says:

    Blessings to you Lokita, as you continue to move forward. Steve is loved and missed by many. It is very appropriate for you to honor him on this second anniversary. My heart and my love are with you. I love you. Take comfort in knowing that we are all still here with you and ready at a moments notice to be present with you in whatever ways you may need. Blessings dear one. <3

    Reply
  13. Danielle Kane
    Danielle Kane says:

    Dear Lokita, Thank you for your words, your decision of kindness, and for understanding how I feel. I often think of you from my healing garden. It has been 5 years since my beautiful son left the physical, a victim of PTSD. The assault of violence, and violent language is still so strong, so I pray and chant and tone for myself and for you and for the One Heart. I wish I had taken you up on your offer for a float in the pool way back. Feeling it now. With love, Danielle

    Reply
  14. lisa
    lisa says:

    Sending you lots of love. Your blogs are very comforting, true they have sadness, but I find the beauty and wisdom in them too!

    Reply
  15. Amy
    Amy says:

    Dearest Lokita,
    Remembering that horrible day with you. Sending prayers and love to your precious heart.
    I posted this beautiful poem on my FB page just a couple days ago:
    Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their great sweetness. Tell yourself – “you tasted as many as you could”.
    Louise Erdrich
    xo

    Reply
  16. Sue Tobias
    Sue Tobias says:

    Lokita- thank you for the reminder that language matters- that living without violence involves how we speak to each other and to ourselves. And such a wonderful happy picture of Steve – emanating such radiance and love!
    Much love and appreciation for sharing your journey, Sue

    Reply
  17. Sara
    Sara says:

    Thank you for this powerful reminder to stay conscious of what we communicate verbally and non-verbally in the company of those for whom it can never be superficial. You are such a brave teacher and Steve would certainly be proud. I’m sure he walks beside you always. Love.

    Reply

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