Saturday, December 3, 2016

The crux of embrace

The crux of embrace

As its fragrance is hidden in the rose,
my Beloved said,
so My presence is hidden in the human heart.

Under our noses, Lord – unobserved
within ourselves and others.

Only faith and desire keep us daring
the crux of embrace.

Yes, the heart gets tipsy at the first nip  
of Your wine -- dances in its cage;      

deeper in the cup, it grows weepy and ponderous.
And when Your fire sweeps through –

first, a searing pain, then ... burned rubble
from which to look out sheepishly upon the world.

But, You promised us ... You promised Your presence  
every moment woven into the heart’s delicate fabric
so pervasively, the rose, having never set
tender foot beyond its vast domain, 
goes about wailing and weeping
at the absence of its own scent.

O child of God, turn from the world’s enticements
to discover within, the fragrance of God.

                            (from A Jewel in the Dust)

Your brush strokes

Your brush strokes

O Beloved, tonight, as these prayers are being said,
looking out upon the bowed heads of Your lovers,

in my heart, also, heads are bowed.
Voices blending in arti; there are voices
          and harmonies within me as well.

And, as I kneel for Your darshan,
in the tomb-shrine of my heart, there is, also, a kneeling.

On this nondescript hill, a small group of Your lovers
has gathered tonight from around the world.

We have come to bow down to the holiest part within us
          and all human beings.
What a long journey to reach this humble abode!

O Beloved, in Your Tomb-Shrine I have found my refuge.
In the shrine of my heart, let me offer You refuge.

Paint the walls within it in Your lovely brush strokes,
scenes from a life of Purity and holy Love.

O child of God, garland the stone of your heart-shrine.
Prepare it lovingly for the arrival of the Guest.

                        (from The Garden of Surrender)

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Toward a rendezvous

Toward a rendezvous                                                                     

Every moment I’m being ushered
into the presence of the King.

Abducted, heavily cloaked –
the horses gallop, the coach hurtles

toward a predestined rendezvous
across the river.

After millenniums, the tide is turning,
gaining momentum, sweeping everything out to sea.

Our gazes meet as the water swirls
urgently around our ankles.

It matters little now if loved ones are
swept beyond arm’s length –

we are bound for the same depths,
our fate sealed, our salvation assured!

In this last measure,
approaching those fabled gates,

I keep them in my heart,
souls interlocked, enfolded ...

into the turbulent embrace
of Arms Everlasting.

O child of God, Love has drenched you to the core.
For such Grace, your life is the only proper barter.

(from A Jewel in the Dust)



Your face everywhere at the Center –
a photograph or painting in every room;

from the ethereal beauty of Your younger days
to the silent majesty of the latter.

Seeing Your face, Lord, let my gaze fall
at Your feet – where it belongs;    

as I must one day – mind, body and spirit –
         fall at Your feet,
to become the dust under Your heels.

Grant me the humility, Lord, to accept myself as I am
by accepting You for Who You are.

Even as my asking is a vain conceit,
I long for the poverty of such humility.

Exhaust my storehouse ... until there’s nothing left
that’s not a gift from You.

Fill my cellar ... with only Your wine –
that I might share a cup with everyone
           who comes to the door.

O child of God, try to love those who you cannot love,
perhaps, beginning with yourself.

(from A Jewel in the Dust)