Thursday, January 18, 2018

Climb through the ropes

Climb through the ropes                          

I can almost grasp it in my bound hands.
How the sword must slice itself into pieces.

And blood must be used – to wipe away the blood.
First, you are a boxer in the ring and then,

the referee between the two and then,
an intimate spectator expected to absorb the blows

without wince or cry, bruised and bleeding
at the violent end of a leather glove yet also

from a nosebleed seat just over the county line.
Yes, I can almost grasp it,

as it slips through my gloved hands  
unencumbered of any defensive pose,

facing the impossible with a daunted inadequacy,
rushing forward to catch the punishing blows

and offer a bare, bloodied neck    
to the melded shards of the original sword.

O child of God, to resolve the soul’s intrinsic quandary,
courage and forbearance must climb through the ropes.


Only the witness

Only the witness                                                                                         

Each of us bearing sole witness to our dreams,
often the main character until we awaken and see

we never really were a participant; only the witness. 
As in this waking dream, the Awakener adds.

When roused from sleep, once and forever, says He,
we shall see, we shall see – we never really were

the participant we think we are; only the witness
to an insubstantiality, suffering its illusory bindings

yet removed from any real peril,
having never left our very own beds. 

Only an intimate witness are we
to this waking dream beyond

anyone’s choosing, design and control
with only one dreamed-up character

a willing participant; only one,   
sowing with perfect equanimity

this hardscrabble dreamscape
with the insidious seeds of irrepressible truth.

O child of God, auspicious is your dream.
This time you envisioned the Avatar.


Friday, January 5, 2018

Eyes divine

Eyes divine             

None can see You but with eyes divine –
words orbiting daily through my own

prayerful mortal mouth and ears,
our one true Self apparently gazing through

those eyes, back there somewhere,
within but also in reflected shards before us. 

We are all looking through God’s eyes
which is to say God is looking through our eyes

if only we could climb back
into our original face before it became

encrusted with the journey’s dust.
Everyone we face is Who we are

under the dust-caked makeup
and distinctive harlequin masks –

spooked ghosts treading the boards
rather valiantly in our assigned roles,

looking up rarely from the issued script,
too obliged, too immersed, too stage-frightened

to look beyond each facade or within our own;
nor project ahead to the God-directed,

neatly-tied plot resolutions
and the deep, heavy curtains sliding closed.

O child of God, o stage-struck one, imagine that! 
You are destined to see your Self. 



Divest yourself

Divest yourself                                                                                          

All roads lead to Rome, the saying goes,
making it difficult, back then, to get lost, I suppose,

as long as you knew which side of the city you were on.
All paths lead to God, we are similarly told –

not just the broadly trampled swaths of traditional religions
but the narrow, individual windings through the rocky wilds.

There are as many paths to God,
the Sufis say, as there are the souls of men.

The Zen Buddhists put it more simply –
comparisons are odious.

To look down upon another’s path means only
that you have diverted your eyes from the Goal;

let another soul into your sacred relationship
with the Divine Companion;

assumed a height which you have not attained.
Perhaps, you are looking backwards,

judging your own path –
the bruising episodes, the cowardice,

the sins and betrayals from an authority
and perspective you do not possess;

not from the helplessness and hopelessness
you refuse to acknowledge.

O child of God, to reach the Goal, divest yourself
of everything you once thought you knew.