FIREFLIES

Fingers intertwined with fingers –

Fireflies in the fir trees –
On fire – but with a “cool” flame.

Legs crossing legs
Turning into afternoon kisses –
The romance of the young
Coming out of the sea.

It’s too soon to know what we need to know –
And by the time we do, it might be all over –
The crowds leaving –
Applause only a memory.

Yes, it’s memory time
But the memories have flown away – like birds –
Migrating –
Flying away like time –
Suddenly and forever.

She said “I love you”
A long time ago
When there was green grass
Open eyes
And breath as sweet as flowers.

Suddenly, a letter arrives, posted long ago –
What does it say?
What could it say?
Given we’re in another place, another time?

 

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TENTATIVE ENCOUNTERS WITH REALITY

Everything – living and nonliving –
Shares, in some way, with God –
Even our sleepy selves.

But this effect tends to disappear
As soon as we experience it –
Yet is the reason it seems so beautiful!

Life appears to be, and is, exquisite
When we experience it slipping through our fingers –

We try our best to hold onto it –
But are able to capture only a few images
In memory or
Imagination.

As we mature, we come to believe
That the mind is “real” –
But this is a lie.

When we dive down into our personal ocean of unreality
Even kisses are only ideas
As we repeatedly lose ourselves in all the infinite dimensions
Of no dimension.

The truth is –

God, and the true self,
May be encountered, only tentatively,
One individual, and one moment,
At a time.

DOWN HERE ON EARTH

If “life” after life were guaranteed
It might be easier to accept wasting this one.

But are we really so different from the leaves
Which bud, sway awhile in the wind,
And, eventually, join an autumnal heap –

Are they also going to heaven?

Or, rocks, which we know eventually turn into dust –
Will they one day find themselves reconstituted as “heavenly” rocks?

Paul tells us that we’ll have a resurrected body, just not our own flesh and bones –
But imperishable, perhaps hard as emerald.

Other people believe they can go on living – at least in memory –
Which is why they spend so much time building monuments to themselves.

But aren’t we all going to “drop” – eventually – just like the leaves?

And should we complain about this –
Given a lifetime of free activity,
And, hopefully, love –
Hasn’t that been a terrific bargain?

If death is real –
Then, logically, each passing moment is a unique miracle –
With the love we experience constituting our only “true heaven” –
And what we should be praying for –

Especially since – after we pass over –
Love will probably be the only gift we’re permitted to retain.

EVERYTHING IN ITS RIGHTFUL PLACE

The trouble with costume parties –
Especially Halloween ones –
Is that we already wear costumes every day.

For us, the world’s a stage –
With set pieces –
Produced for family, work, and friends.

We always play “ourselves” of course,
But, as director, we’re
Capable, at a moment’s notice,
Of changing script, actors, location,
And even meaning.

We do this faster than eye can follow –
Faster than memory encodes –
And it’s a seamless entertainment –
Performed for an audience of one.

We find ourselves living inside our own movie –
A production of hope, pathos and tragedy –

But we can never touch it
Since nothing produced in this manner will ever be fully real.

Instead, we hold life close, like a secret deck of cards,
And postpone true reality
Until the moment after death –

So, for now, everything can appear – so far as the world’s concerned – to be
In its rightful place.