pulled to surrender

today i will sit quietly

and watch the hummingbirds

buzz busily about

i may do nothing

all day

but sit and wonder

ah! if only this were the truth

instead i am pulled into the world

with its complications and demands

a world that tugs of these emotions

and insecurities

i have never found a better answer

to life’s questions

than surrender.

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the poetry of small things done beautifully

there is a sweetness in simplicity
when you slow down enough
to become present
to each and every action
without distracted mind
without wishing you were some place else
but doing the thing you are doing
fully
i learned this through the great art
of washing up
it brings me such great pleasure
this simple joy
is presence
a communion with life
an undoing doing
i don’t rush
or neglect
neither do i fret
i just pay attention
and allow it to happen
as if by itself
such is
the poetry of small things done beautifully

i pray this secret joy
is not forgotten
in the pursuit
of importance.

Photo by Catt Liu on Unsplash

The Dark Side and Why We Need to Go There

I have often held back from talking about the darker and more difficult areas of life’s rich path, but I’m beginning to see that we need to include the darkness more and more in our relationships with each other and in our conversations. 

It’s not that I’m an unhappy guy. In fact the opposite. I’m pretty easy. I mean, I’m kind of intense but there is no area of life I won’t go to. I include the whole thing. I have had to. I tried to exclude my deepest emotions, my pain and my wounding, traumas carried from formative years, but it didn’t lead to happiness or peace. It just led to misery, addiction and dysfunctional relationships.

So I wised up and, through grace, slowly turned around and faced my demons.

I got sick. I have been real sick in my life with a chronic disease. Housebound for two years with a prognosis from the doctors that I would be on meds for life, probably have to have my colon removed and be sick for ever. None of that happened, and thats partly because I turned around and faced everything that was not whole and healed in my life.

It took me years. I have railed against God, against the world, against my father. I have bawled my eyes out hundreds of times about where it’s all gone wrong, and how life has cheated me. I have hated life itself.

And I have been to the pit of despair.

And all of this has served to cleanse the dust from my eyes, and purify me on the deepest level. It has been a detoxification on the emotional, mental and spiritual levels of my being. It has made me wise and awake.

We ingest and assimilate what we are taught, told and given, when we are young and vulnerable. We have no choice, our very survival depends on those who nurture us. We absorb their values, their beliefs, their opinions, and make them our own. 

But they are not necessarily good for us or right for us. And they are not values, beliefs or opinions independently arrived at. They are handed down through generations unchecked and un-investigated. It is so clear when you see it. Truth, beliefs, values, opinions, when they are not fully known as true through self inquiry and self mastery, are just handed down second hand ideas.

To become rich in heart and mind and spirit, you have to be prepared to become a warrior, one that turns his blade upon himself (or herself). That blade is used to scythe through falseness and cut away what no longer serves love or truth.

And that means being prepared to go to the darkness, for there are the jewels.Being scared of one’s darkness gives one’s darkness more power. It feeds the negativity and perpetuates division and lack.

Is any of this easy?

No. But from what I see, the journey of denial, the journey of trying to keep the mask on is almost agony, and gets harder and harder as we get older. I see it in so many people I meet, trying so hard to pretend that everything is ok when its clearly not. So frightened of falling apart that they are falling apart.

Thus, much as I would like for everything to be sweet and fairytale-like, I’m sorry to say it ain’t like that, and the only real way is be become ‘real’ through diving inside, turning around and beckoning these demons towards you. It’s time, and it’s probably the only thing that will create real and lasting change.

I have said enough. I expected to get up and write a love poem. But it’s 4th July here in USA and apparently it’s Independence Day. And it made me realize just how ridiculously superficial most of life is.

 

Born to Do Nothing

Terrified of meaninglessness
We create ourselves
As the pinnacle of life
We built a world
That uses doing
As being
Because we need meaning
But we were born
To do nothing
Just enjoy existence
And take care of our bodies
And our souls
To look after each other
And to bathe in the innocence
Of love’s sweet fragrance
All this that we have created
We have done in our own image
It is a monster
A machine
That eats everything
And everyone
And deludes us all
Into thinking there is meaning in it

I am so sorry to tell you
There isn’t

To rest as a speck in eternity
Surrounded by forever
Infinite distance and time on all sides
To know this, to feel it and to live it
And to maintain some composure
As the waves of awareness
Flood into and through you
To be innocent
And pure of heart
That is the only meaning
I can find.

surrounded by eternity

last night as i was preparing for bed
i had pause to stop
and in that stopping
a subtle yet strong
awareness came upon me
i realized just how tiny i am
both in terms of size
and in terms of time
i am a breath
surrounded by eternity
and i felt how
exquisite and terrifying that is
and why humans clutch and grasp at power
desperate for meaning
in the vastness
for myself i felt no agony
nor desperation
i just allowed the waves
of awareness
to wash over me

the truth is we can do nothing
but realize it
and embrace it all
the wonder, the horror
the suffering, the joy
the love and the loss
embrace it all
with a tender openness
and let it pierce
our defended hearts and minds
until we see the same dilemma
in each other

love is the only remedy.

Photo by Robson Hatsukami Morgan on Unsplash

Death’s Great Power

In awareness and embracement
Of death’s doorway
We savor the bitter sweet
Experience of life
And celebrate existence itself

In denial and fear
Of death’s finality
We clutch at the illusion
Of power
And build emboldened castles
Even as the tide
Draws inwards

We take nothing with us
But our love
Or our fear
And only love
Opens the secret doorway.

seek no refuge

weary of the incessant prison chatter of the mind

he sought refuge in the ineffable

yet even there he found no peace, just escape

eventually he died to it all

and was resurrected as silence

it had all been a dream

the tale of a vivid imagination

seek no refuge, hide from nothing

but let the world kill you

until there is no more you

for one moment, just stop

for one brief moment
see if it is possible
to stop, without force,
all concern with your seeking activity
just see if you can
let it all just be there
without touching it
or reacting to it
allow everything
to be just the way it is
without wanting it to be any different

if you can do such a thing
even for the briefest moment
you will have touched silence
your true home
and if you can endeavor to move and act
and live
from this silence
it will change everything
within and without
for the rest of your life.

in love with softness

i am in love with the softness that reveals itself

when we let go of any defensiveness

when we open the door

and let everything pour in and out

such exquisite tenderness does not come easily

and so many spend their days struggling to avoid it

yet they miss the taste of love itself

this simple truth is the essence of my poetry and my life.