Archive | Lesson

The Earth Gods Know. . .

 

I scribe.  The teacher speaks. . . Nature expounds her presence with all.  She ventures to shout her presence.  She sends storms and pestilence and calm days and sunny skies to announce her presence.  She grants to all the balm of her existence.  But she angers and cries .  And in frustration teaches what no other thing or method can.  She is a great lady but given to little patience.  The earth is in dire straits, she says.  She hurts and I cannot let her bleed to death.  So she rages and fumes and she tires.  Will she give up?  The earth gods know.  The earth gods know.

It is a good world.  You had a dream, once.  We watched and talked amongst ourselves whether it was worth it.  And how could you be so intense when none about you were.  They took it but did not see from where they supped.  They drank and they did not see who poured.  The warm milk, the bread, the shot of dry whiskey that burned the fire in their belly. . .

(I say, fire them up.  Teach them all.  The elders their responsibilities as well as their rights.    And the adolescents who have the fire in the belly, to quarter it and contain it and put it all to constructive use.  And to the babies, these who have memories that will not quit, do not let us disappoint them.  For we will have a generation of vipers on hand and we will have done it.  We will have terrorists of the first order and we will have no one else to blame but us  . . . .again, all time is simultaneous.  From a journal of December 6, ’92, valid then and certainly NOW.

For Now. . .

Let your mind answer
your heart’s murmuring,
for in the sanctity of self,
you will see your divinity.

In the august crucible
that is Earth, latticed by clouds
hovering the trees,
you gain your peace.

In the musing of the grass growing
to reach its height and to color
the bare earth with a carpet
you feel the hallowed crest. . .

In all, gently tend
the heart’s rending and choose
the teachers who match
the performance. . . .

of your innate goodness. . . .

poem written
August 9, 1985

photo by
Kathy Rybacki Qualiana

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Depends On How High Up You Reach. . . .

 

Hardest Lesson. . .

They don’t know yet,
the ones closest to me. . .
friends and all. . .
why I do things the way I do.

It is because I know
the good in the work
and the beauty in the body
doing what mind tells it to do.

It is a dance,
a mind and body ballet.
It has taken centuries of many lives
to learn and it was no simple matter.

The hardest thing to purge
was thinking I was above
doing such menial work.
While all the time I had to learn

how to be god-enough to do it.

 

No longer is the excuse ‘I’m only human’ valid.  Lest we forget how much depends on us.  There is no refuge in that cliche anymore.  Think seriously on it.  VRH

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Where The Real Money is Counted. . . .

Now, tell me what you think. . . .

Now talk to me,
and tell me what you think.
I want to know the conclusions
you have reached.
Tell me what you know,
not what others have said.

I can read what they have said
about any number of topics.
I want to hear your thoughts,
and how you come by them.
What does this say to you
about how you arrive at this place
in time?

I tire of hearing what the talking heads
have read and tire of hearing variances
of the same story.
I want no quotes.  I want your thought.
You have lived long enough
to have a say, to know your gut feeling.

No time is right anymore for talk.
The devices tell with a click what is
the current thinking.  Of everyone.
I want to know why your heart keeps beating
and you keep on keeping on
when our country totters amidst
constitutional crisis.  And morality changes.
And the Earth’s countries are slugging it out.

But most of all why you think
it is worth a tinker’s damn to care about.
I realize I am only an audience of one,
but I want to know what you know.
I want to burglarize your mental house.

So tell me.  Your thoughts will be original to me
and I will be the richer for them.
I will happily walk to the Memory Bank with them.

It is there I have an open account.

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The Old Country. . .

 

 

Home of One’s Soul. . .

The Teachers Speak. . . Every so often, out of one’s domain, there is an isolation that swamps one. It is difficult to shake, and yet there it is, evidence that this is not home. There is a portion or many portions appealing to one, yet basically, the at home feeling begins to leave.   This is when one digs in and brings to light all those things that brighten the soul. Dig into your handiwork, give yourself some leeway but stay with the program, stay with the route. You will find that the isolation will fade somewhat and again you will regain your sense of belonging. But do not distress yourself about it.   It is a pure longing for the home of one’s soul. It will come about in its own good time and the journey will have been worth the while. And what is gained along the way will add simply more weight to the gems in your pockets. (scribed November of ’94)

Across the Mind’s Eye. . .

Laying like whipped icing
on the wedding cake,
the drifts of snow across the mind’s eye
left a clear path to the heart’s memory
of the other winters when love
closed the doors of the world
and cherished me.

What were the winters like
when the snow stood high
and like lover’s swords sliced a path

and found where I was?

poem written Nov , 2011

 

Deep within are memories brought forth for a reason indecipherable.  Simply as the poem says, across the mind’s eye.  Yet sweeping the body, finds the knees weak and my heart laboring.  One wonders then from where comes the love, the cherishing.  It is deep within but the source cannot be brought to mind. Still the feeling is unmistakable. And the knowledge stays that somewhere that world is intact.  And a matter of time only, time as it is known where I am, folds unto itself and puts me back into the ‘old country.’

One then does not argue with this because it is not belief, but knowledge.  And it was yesterday though a lifetime has been lived since.  Puzzle?  No, because we learn that linear time belongs to Earth but confirming that all time is simultaneous.  (April, 2018)

photo by Joe Hallissey sr.

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Emma E. . . A song of joy. . . and Magic. . .

Song of Joy. . .

My joy is great in presenting this heartfelt bundle in her run for the roses.  She does nicely with wonderful parents and grandparents ready with arms open.  And uncles and aunts by relation and a hundred cousins and others by adoption.

She has reason to smile broadly and wink in secret.  She knows, of course, she knows what the secret is and who holds the keys.  We all wish we had arrived with such welcome and so much love.  We think what wonders could have been wrought, but we know now what we can give to each other.

And with open arms greet each other to assure a welcome when we meet.  Emma E. has already taught us all much.  She knows who holds the sparklers and knows also,  in her heart,  that she is one of the ones who holds that bit of magic out to us.

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Ripped, Severed, Broken. . . .

Times Such As These. . .

I lock up the room
and pocket the last remnants
of words laying about
unattended.

Fearful that pieces of my heart
may be found
scattered among them.
And why not?

Times such as these
leave us with little salve
to heal the open wounds
which once were hearts.

For whom do we weep?
The children whose siblings
will no longer come to the table
to convey with no doubt
the events which took their innocence?

Or the parents whose hearts
were transplanted
when word came that
these unspent stars were already
breathing the rarified air
as heaven’s most blessed?

Look at us here.
Pleading that our children
will be safe as they try to understand
what we in our dotage
have not learned.
To resort to arms

means death in any country.

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Conversations: World Creation. . .

 

Conversations:  World Creation . . .

If it were not for the fact that our David came home for chemo treatment on a regular basis and he and I had dinner together at home, I would never have had the mind bending conversations we did.

It was then I learned of world creation for the first time when he said in an unrecognizable voice, ‘ by damn, if anyone could create a world, you can.’  It was a possibility discussed in his major which was Philosophy.

I did not come across the creation theory until years later when studying Robert Nozick’s book, The Examined Life.  He said before his untimely death that he thought possibly that humans were in the creation business, in training for world building.  And here David and I were discussing this years earlier at the dinner table.  (I have had some very good teachers?)

The following was from a journal entry of November 8, 1983 and I scribed the teacher’s words.

When your actions are such that no ill will is intended then acceptance of a decision need not destroy you.  It is part of growth which allows a future to be decided.  You have spent a large time thinking that a decision has been made before your heart knows that decision.

We do not take lightly a deference to opinions.  Your philosophy shows already what happens to choices in a world of  worlds.  Yet you think a forced decision is no decision.  You have already taken into consideration possibilities.

If possibilities are probable, then we have already built worlds.  No need now to hesitate.  No need now to reconsider what is already imprinted in a world somewhere.

We need to take all probabilities and let them fall where they may.  Now we know that all things are considered at some level.  Now we know there is a somewhere and a somewhen for all things.

Let the answers be what they may and you build your world with the intentions which come from your heart.

(if there is energy left I may do a small volume on world building with the Given poetry on worlds through this lifetime.  Right now though after much time trying to choose a short poem on decisions,  my thoughts lead me to choosing a heart theme,  with the words of the last line from the entry.  ‘You build your world with the intentions which come from your heart.’  So close to Valentine’s Day and within a short time that my elder will be ready to give the word on The Psalms of Love,  I chose the following.  In journeying what one wishes is not what one thinks is priority but what one gets, IS.  Not up front at first,  but in the final analysis,  it Is.)

Not Wished but Needed. . .

It is a heart
full blown
inclined to burst.

But for now
it beats its song
too sweet not to hear. . .

Why, can it not be
forever inclined
in a direction of choice?

Instead fully charged
toward what is not wished. . .

but needed. . .

 

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A Lesson In Strawberries. . . .

A Lesson In Strawberries. . .

( I awakened one recent morning in conference with someone who said it was again time for the article on the lesson in strawberries.  Several years ago it was printed in The Detroit Free Press and has since been reprinted several times.  A man appeared at my door the first time with a quart of strawberries from his garden and several stories to tell about his mother and her philosophy.  It is with wonder that some ideas will strike a warm bed of memory and spill its essence.  I cannot bring to mind to whom I was talking when awakened but no doubt a classroom again.  I think I am nighttime’s perennial student.) 

I was a young girl, about 12.   It was our first summer on The Farm and it was a hard one.   But it also was filled with good food straight from the warm earth.  My mother had a talent for growing things in the city despite its polluted air; even 70 years ago people knew to be unhealthy.   But in the clear air of the country, in the soil of her loam filled garden, her talents blossomed as did her crops.

We were getting produce ready for the stand down near the road.   As we were preparing the fruits and vegetables, selling them as fast as we put them out, friends from the city were arriving.  They were diverse characters.  Some were people in her circumstances with many children and little money.  A few were wealthy but the outstanding characteristic of all these relationships was mutual respect.

Toward the late afternoon, I was tired and whiny.   The source of my irritation was the fact that my mother was giving to her friends, without charge, the best and finest of what we were putting out.   A bushel of potatoes here, quarts of strawberries there, a basket of fresh vegetables here.

But the strawberries were my argument.  I loved them and the ones she grew were the reddest, juiciest and largest I had ever seen.   They were sweet clear through and the dream stuff of that first June on The Farm.  With the heavy cream separated from the rich milk the excellent cows gave, these were mine she was giving away.  The strawberries summed up my resentment.

“You can’t keep giving away our profits,” I said.  “you have given away half of all the produce!”

She turned to me in a voice I have not forgotten and a lesson that has stayed with me.

“These are mine,” she said.  “I will do with them what I please.  These are for me to give away if I want to.  No one can tell me who to give to.  My friends may never do anything for me, but if one of them does something for my children or my grandchildren, then that will be payment for me.”

I have thought often of that lesson in gift giving.  In giving what is yours.   In the course of my days, when someone did something for me I did not expect, there was the lesson in strawberries.  When so much has been done for our children by their friends and ours, the lesson in strawberries comes up.

When time, whole weekends of time, have been given to sit with a sick child, to listen to an impoverished spirit, to make dinner when the task seems insurmountable and appetite non-existent, to do any of these when time has become our most precious commodity, it is a gift of Spirit.  When a check arrived unexpectedly from someone whose only reason was “I remember how I would have felt to have received this” or the someones who oftentimes helped our children through school because “it was done for me.”

I thought of the lesson in strawberries.

As I review a life where so much has been done for me and mine, from sources unexpected, I am grateful for the lesson in strawberries.   My mother gave what was hers to give, what she worked for and gave freely.  She was paying it forward long before the idea became novel.  I do not forget.

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The Past Is Still Happening. . .

Journal entry of November 3, 1983—(keep in mind I work with all time is simultaneous, a quantum premise, though I did not know it at the time when 35 years ago I was into black holes and white holes where this entry picks up) . . I scribed. . .It is no small thing when we start commenting on the universes within universes, penetrating and interpenetrating, we then go into which had its beginning, yet when?

It is still happening you were told.  The past is still happening and the future has already happened.  Take your pencil and make circles extending even further and further out.  You will find that the circles become interlocked and in them you are, picking up material for a book, for living, for a problem which yet is not solved.  We like to see material stretched and the mind boggled.

(I did what you see here and then the teachers comment).  The interlocking circles show the universes.  That is as good as it goes.  From your I Am you then project into an I Will Be and then the will be will show your then I Am.  Following this procedure you see where the reverse will also be true.  Your I Am falls into the I Was interlocking and in the I Was is the center of the I Am and it is still happening.  The past is never finished, never done.  It is in progress.

When you looked upon the Amish material simulating the book cover, it peeled your hide back again.  You found a tugging to where your present I am is still a part of that present.  This is what does the arc angle in people’s heads.  They don’t know why they are drawn, but that part of them that still yields to that present,  the past present is where the turn of events draws them.

Your Circa 1840 speaks to a time of a woman and family.  She lives yet and draws on you.  And you on her.  Your feelings surmount the time element and give to her the needed support.  Her lack of knowing circumscribes her knowing.  Both of you are in the process of requesting a greater something and you think you knew it from a somewhen.  What somewhen?  The somewhen is in your memory bank and you knew of it and wore it with splendor.  Where did you come from?

Circa 1840:  Revisited

She could say in reverent tone,
I love you.
I polished the hearth and
set the bread to rise.
While her heart cried silently,
do you love me?

The children came, one by one.
She loved them, each and everyone.
They were good.  She said I love you.
I’ve borne you sons
and taught them how to pray.
I’ve polished the hearth
and set the bread to rise.
While her heart cried silently,
do you love me?

The sons grew up and one by one
they went away.  He never knew why.
He never knew that they too, said,
I’ve fed the chicks and bedded the calves
and got a perfect score in sums.
While their hearts fairly burst,
do we please thee?

He accepted the polished hearth,
the risen bread, the handsome sons
who tried so hard to please
as that which was his due.

One day the hearth no longer shone,
no longer was the bread set to rise,
no handsome sons to plead
with eyes that tore her heart apart.

‘You do not love me!’ he angrily shouted.
Wearily she turned away.
Did you not see the polished hearth,
the bread set to rise,
the sons who tried so hard to please

and love that died?

 

(click on illustration for details)

 

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An Evergreen For Your Heart. . .

(I falter dreadfully.  There was more violence in a school this week.  I say that I will make another ocean with tears that do not stop.  I cannot write nor put up a heart with a rip up the middle again. Cannot sew it up again. Then I read that someone pulled up a bygone post and needed the words and I hear my Teacher say would you deny another day to one who needs the words that have been given to you?  When I needed just one more day I was given the words.  Can I do less?  They were remembered and are needed again.  My readers oftentimes write my essays by their need. Today I wish to plant an Evergreen in your heart.) 

(Posted Oct 2, 2015)  We are told that hearing you will hear and not understand and seeing you will see and not perceive.  Simple words meaning simple things?  But of course you see and of course you hear unless physical impairments prevent us.  But it is even more than that.  In the process there are the cries in crisis and there are the tears that are not seen.

The father asked his son at breakfast,  ‘are you not speaking?’  And  the son answered ‘I  spoke yesterday.’  They were across the table from each other but worlds apart.  The father was asking why are you silent.  And the son was already mentally in school and  gave his oral report yesterday.

The daughter was hurting and gathered courage to tell her emotionally distant mother why she ached inside only to find later her brother coming  into the house mimicking her talk with her mother, laughing.  The daughter shared her heart and her mother not knowing the place her daughter was speaking from, dismissed it as a nothing.

Neither parent heard nor saw what the child’s body language, words or eyes were conveying.  The Master said, ‘hearing you shall hear and not understand and seeing you shall see and not perceive.’  How much are we missing?  We should at least be wondering.  What is more to hear than what we hear or see what we see?   When the process begins, the pain will be poignant but welcome it.  It will mean that you and your god are in conference.

Times Such As These. . .

I lock up the room
and pocket the last remnants
of words laying about unattended.

Fearful that pieces of my heart
may be found
scattered among them.
And why not?

Times such as these
leave us with little salve
to heal the open wounds
which once were hearts.

For whom do we weep?
The children whose siblings
will no longer come to the table
to convey with no doubt
the events which took their innocence?

Or the parents
whose hearts were transplanted
when word came
that these unspent stars
were already breathing the rarified air
as heaven’s most blessed?

Look at us here.
Pleading that our children
will be safe as they try to understand
what we in our dotage
have not learned.
To resort to arms

means death in any country.                                                    

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