PEERING OUT OF TUNNELS

Why worry about what one “looks like”
When peering through cloudbursts of love?

How give up one’s “self” in order to look through God’s eyes –
Or take a “perfect shot” without aiming –
In other words, how act in this world?

How will we achieve the spontaneity of no ego – like children do –
Or be impervious as a flower taking its own beauty for granted?

And why spend life peering out of tunnels
To see whether you’re loved or threatened?

What God is, is fearless – like water –
A being who’s no “thing” – but radiates love –
Without, however, being interested in the images created inside our heads –
As opposed to what we’re actually doing.

God appears wherever nothing else can be seen –
Beyond the self – even any “God” self –
That is, a selfless “self” who sees – but can’t be seen –
Because God never appears outside “spirit,”
That is, “love,” truth,” “justice,” or “beauty,”
And why the “you,” yearning to model yourself on God,
Are unafraid of dying –
Because there, you’re actually not there –
Even though, up to now, you’ve been busily completing a spiritual self
Inside time!

 

THINKING IS A TOOL

Thinking is good – perhaps even better than knowing –
Because thinking is a tool – like a knife is for cutting –

And cutting is important to distinguish one thing from another.

For most human beings, thinking is an outward-facing tool –
Rarely used for cutting the cutter.

People make exquisitely fine cuts
Truly accurate dissections of others –
But, ordinarily, fail to address themselves.

Someone able to use a knife on herself
Is able to open eyes all over her body
To see through time and space.

If she keeps cutting, she’ll end up with nothing –
Which is a result God encourages – ultimate freedom!
The place where the universe begins and ends –
Where love, truth, justice, beauty, and freedom
Constitute points from which everything else bursts into being –
Where spirit touches the material world –
After taking a long path from material to spirit –
And then repeating itself
Over and over again.

BEAUTY (for Mary)

Isn’t it true that capitalism has been the death of beauty
Since as soon as anyone tries to buy beauty –
It crumbles, turns to dust, and slips out of one’s grasp.

Beauty must always be a gift, acquired solely through thoughts of love –
The kind of gift you hold onto until the end –
First, in your room, then in your chest of jewels,
And, finally, clasped in your dying hand.

This gift is one of pure joy, made solely for you.

A great deal of thought, patience, and passion went into this gift –
No one else in the world has anything like it.
It’s the first and last thought of an invisible American poet
Who nobody knows the name of.

Beauty is a spiritual light that makes the eyes shine –
Beauty is falling in love by accident – that is, “out of the blue” –
Beauty is holy lovemaking that, one night, created you, you, you!

Dear heart, only one,
You’re my beautiful true life-partner!

GOD SINGS IN COLORS

Traditional English poets were primitive
Because you could hear the “beat” but not actually “see” much of anything.

When your heart echoes that beat and starts becoming giddy –
Your eyes will still be saying you have no idea where you really are!

A poet of fountains hears cool splashing –
A poet of the mind occasionally knows what he’s talking about –
But a poet that “sees” the world – as it is –
Is the poet God listens to.

God sings all the time –
Not always in melodies, that’s true,
But listen – God’s singing right now
About a direction in which to go and friends we might want to listen to!

God also sings in colors –
But only mystics are able to see this beauty
And only mystics have a good idea what God’s been talking about –
Generally, love, truth, justice, or beauty –
Directing these holy conversations straight through our hearts.

CHRISTIAN CAPITALISM

Poets of “the spirit,” to some, may appear un-American
Because “America” stands for a boyish “toughness” –
For men pursuing women with showers of strength
And women carrying out the role of store-window mannequins of beauty.

However, the spirit, in essence, is beautiful by itself!
Which is why it’s so unknown in all 50 states –
After all, people didn’t come here for beauty
They came for money
And, for some at least, there’s been plenty of that.

There’s a surplus of energy banging around in the good ol’ U.S. of A. –
Lots of striving to make “big house” dreams come true
Culminating in hierarchies of unequals – originally imported from the Old World
But, more recently, branded “Christian Capitalism”
Worshipped by cold and intolerant Evangelical hearts
Without the necessity of any spiritual foundation whatsoever.

It’s a mystery why beauty never became more important in America –
Perhaps it’s our dedication to “first things first”
Or that we simply never got around to fully appreciating it.

Treating “beauty” in this way, however –
Imagine how unlikely we’re ever going to view “love” or “truth” –
Much less “God” in a serious manner either.

A WORLD OF SPLINTERED MINDS

The poet “drowns” himself in beauty –
But this can never happen in the West – in the land of logical thinking.

The poet greets a flower on the dining room table
Which his wife placed there that morning – just before he arose.

The internet, on the other hand, never contains actual beauty
Because whatever’s there –
Isn’t real
And, since only the real is vulnerable to dying, only the real can truly be beautiful.

So, wake up – put down your iPhone –
Beauty, as the essence of God, is waiting everywhere – just for you.

Like I said, wake up, little one –
Then, wake up again!
Because beauty resides only in that second awakening.

The poet has “drowned” himself in beauty –
But, unfortunately, he’s asleep – and completely unaware of it –
This kind of “waking sleep” constitutes normal quotidian activity –
A mental “mirror” reflecting infinite numbers of digital mirrors –
But never, ever, an actual flower!

So, this all-encompassing electronic world, completely empty of natural beauty,
Will always be a world of splintered minds.

A BEAUTY WE HAVEN’T BEEN ABLE TO IMAGINE

First, there’s the “self” our mother celebrates –
A mother who loves her child –
This self is like a hard rubber ball
Rolling and bouncing around borderline realities.

Next is an incipient “God” self – which is aspirational –
The person we would like to become –
Prayers floating out ahead of us
Accompanied by whispered dreams – nearly coming true –
Which culminates in the “beloved” – essentially, your “true self.”

Then, finally, one day, we might even begin thinking about attempting the ultimate goal –
A no-thing who’s equally a non-persona –
More beautiful than beauty –
So much so that it stuns our eyes.

In this experience, we discover the kind of joy
Allowing us to forget who we are – or, even, who we ever were –
Revealing a beauty we haven’t been able to imagine –
A beauty we might actually achieve if we were “God”
Or, perhaps even, “God’s” God.

WHEN MEN ARE FREE TO BE BEAUTIFUL

When men are free to be beautiful
And women become inspired by the bravery of Alexander –

When men start reflecting on the beauty of their surroundings
And women train night and day for competitive contests –

When men write poetry about their love of the natural world
And women burn with desire for stellar accomplishments –

Is the time when men and women will start switching roles –
And, then, switching back again –
Especially since such roles will no longer exist –
Nor the traditional hierarchies either –
And people’s historically stubborn egos will disappear forever.

When everyone becomes free enough to be their “true self”
They’ll also be free to ask what God would do – and then, actually, do it!

This is the spiritual space Jesus embodied himself,
Then perfected, and, subsequently, died for!

Now, two millennia later, it’s become somewhat easier to achieve –
Not, of course, a “gimme” –
But, certainly, more possible
Now than then!

GOD IS FREEDOM

God is not power or any variant of power –
Instead, God is freedom –
Because without freedom, there’d be no point to power –
Which is why the weakest and most vulnerable human being on earth
Is more godly than the most powerful –
Provided, of course, that she’s also more free.

Each individual human being is born free –
And then goes on to develop into a “someone” or “something” –
Usually an ego playing out a role –
But, in spite of reaching worldly success, fame, or riches
If one lacks freedom, then such goals will amount to “nothing” – in any true spiritual sense.

So, given that we’re born free
And life’s ultimate goal is to return to that original freedom –
Letting go of our roles in order to become a holy “nobody”
Is how, finally, we’ll be able to achieve total freedom –
Maybe even becoming as free as God is free.

Freedom is the precondition to any spiritual gifts –
Whether love, truth, justice, or beauty –
Because, without freedom, none of these is possible.

Ultimate freedom, of course, comes with freedom from the terrors of death –
Because if one is free to die, certainly one will also be free to live.

Jesus understood this – along, of course, with everything else!

MEMORIES LIKE MOUNTAINS

Joy jumps up – almost out of nothing –
Hope also arrives from nothing.

Nothing is eternal as love –
And nothing is as unbreakable as truth.

All night long, beauty remains a dark One –
Until morning, when it shatters into a trillion different colorful images.

As we grow older, memories become like mountains –
Mainly lying behind us –
While ahead only a few sparkling streams remain to cross.

While still young, though, Nature called out to us like the children we were –
Bursting with life – and with love taken for granted.

But as we age, our attention migrates to ever greater abstractions
Which become steadily easier to understand and accept
Than those earlier complex bursts of childish life-love.