Whisper My Return (with Spoken Word)

Into my cathedral, no path to follow
Just my will. An alter of dirt and moss
Built by no human hand gives me pause.

I do not believe in God.

God, “I don’t believe in you.”

But when you whisper through leaves
Trees rustle back their peaceful thanks,
“How can your existence be denied?”

One thing that will endure, is beauty.
So while you and I may never break bread,
Interwoven inside each step taken on my path

A presence I can no longer deny.

God, I believe, now, believe in me.

Yesterday, I walked up a stream into a womb
It’s walls covered in soft beds of moss
The trees, eternal, whisper my return.

Bottling Mountain’s Wind

I wish I could capture how the wind feels near the summit of
Mount Monadnock
As baldness rises above trees
Leaving wind to it’s own device
Each hair on my arm
Probably like a fish in the sea
Unaware that this is different
Now knowing air as it should be

And the smell, too, like pines inviting holiday into my spirit.

And the feet snapping chirp of
The hopper sneaking past
Zephyr’s surge in my good ear.

If only I could bottle this in poetry
I could then die and join
The pantheon of greats
But until, I will keep climbing
Like Emerson or Thoreau
Until what I have done
Is good enough
To pass.

Reflections on Massachusetts Ave, 7/23/18

It’s so fucked up
This culture
People with rucksacks walking there
Like There is someplace to be
As if here is never enough.

Right here!

Can’t you see what’s right here!

A tree some soul planted
Maybe from a seed or a sprout
Has grown up
Having found the sun.

A woman runs by
Exercising
Ear buds in her head holes
That could,
If she were still enough,
Hear a bird in the city, singing.
But no.
No!
She is talking business
Instead of just sweating.

Here!
Here! I tell you
The place to be
Right in this spot.

Don’t move
For a minute.

And see
And hear

And be.

Forget all the stones stacked up
Neat as can be
Organized like Earth never imagined.
A monument to nothing.
A dwelling for no one
We know.

Here
Hear
See
Now.

Greece
Vietnam
Philippines
Korea
Latvia
Turkey
Romania
Ireland

Water drunk from plastic.
Lifewtr. Purified.

In each, a stream
Asking us to drink it
From our open palms
Living, pure.

A bronze Gandhi
Walks. Frozen.
On watch. Who
Will wake,
Walk with him
To collect salt?

On Seeing the Sunrise, 7/20/18

I do not know God like you do
Or you
Or you
Or, even, you.

As a youth, I thought I’d meet Him
In Church
Speak to Him through Prayer.
We’d all chant together.

This morning, when I finally woke
Something entered me
Not a Man, or a Woman, but Being.
It knit a whole.

I quietly sat and listened
To the words of poets: Rumi, Kinnell, Lawrence
Blake, Kabir and Thoreau
Until their words invited me outside.

Under foot, the sand cooled by the night
Awaited my imprint,
And the sky, wow! the Sky!
Spoke through remnants of storms.

An orange glow pressed through a veil
Spreading its light across the horizon
The edges of clouds painted purple
And the silence of a new day filled me.

Perhaps, like Kabir, who knew nothing shut iron gates
That new love couldn’t open and wake
The beautiful woman asleep beyond the clouds.
“Fantastic!” He says, “Don’t let a chance like this go by!”

So across lines in sand set by human machines
I leapt to stand awake and in awe
At some divine being now inside me
Ready to swim in the bay, as full as the sea.

With thanks to poetry found in The Rag and Bone Shop of the Heart, edited by Robert Bly, James Hillman, and Michael Meade. Harper Perennial, New York, 1992.

Up, Up, Up Into His Sky

I wake, having forgotten to look up
To see how god shapes his story for us
If only we had the cypher to the clouds.

I ask the trees, having watched Him longer,
If they have a code, they say, “no man,
Made up our own, more fun that way.”

I smile and move along to speak with birds
They all laugh together, “silly man, always
Thinking God does everything for you.”

I smile and look past them at the blue
Wanting to unlock the dictionary, and name
Every corner of the sky in between clouds.

Just then the birds’ silence stills me
To these pieces of universe we surmise
Are ours to discover and name.

Names that will be forgotten
Once their meaning dies and with us,
Drift up, up, up into His sky.

Image: Sky 2, Creator’s Celebration by Roxanne Dyer
https://roxannedyer.com/sky-oil-painting-art-gallery/