Where We Cook The Oatmeal. . .

In the many studies on love and goodness, what appears to be evident is that when one is aware of good and when one comes to the time to do good,  the choices are few to do other than good.  When you become better and better,  your options cease. 

Heaven goes one better.  When approaching sainthood,  the options are not there anymore.  And even if sainthood is not on our conscious agenda,  I clue you that it is somewhere in us.  These they refer as those who have made the light a beacon force in their lives.  And who in their secret thoughts would deny this,  that they would be less than a beacon of light?

When the mind is one with the god mind,  only for that which gives life  (and who would deny otherwise,  no matter the personal consequences?)  humanity’s progression is the only path to take.

Here Is Where We Live. . .

There was a time
when thoughts and desires
were simple and
fleshed out a life.
When rain on the windows
promised a day with a good book.

Commitments came with age
and options few.
A book became a luxury
with sleep non existent and
a nap became the respite.

Fewer options were the result
of choices,  and commitments
took precedent because
other lives were at stake.

Big lessons to teach and
necessary ones,  if the evolution
of humanity was to continue.
A trip to the moon and a jaunt to Mars
will be the children’s dream
but here on Earth is where
we cook the oatmeal

to feed the children’s dreams.

 

Painting by
Claudia Hallissey

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Crowded With Saints. . . invisible

 

When I try to explain what track my thinking has taken in my life,  even as a child or a teenager when a peer said that I talk as if I am reading out of a book,  I am at a loss.  In the following excerpt from The Last Bird Sings,  Marshall,  the student is explaining to his mentor,  Felix,  a feeling he needs explanation for.  He is at the point in the story where having found the brothers  and Felix he feels finally at home, wondering why he feels as he does.   I have edited the segment.

Marshall thought for a moment.  His feelings needed some sorting.  He looked at Felix with intensity.

‘I cannot see it, but can feel it.  I cannot put a name to it but it is real. When I talk to the brothers,  each and together, I get the feeling that I am not just talking to them.  By themselves or altogether.  I get the feeling that there are great ones standing about listening.  I have the feeling that we are in the midst of saints standing.  Even now,  I have the sense that we are not alone.’

‘You are right, Marshall.  We are not alone.  And it is good that you sense this.

For too many people talk as if what they profess to believe has substance and presence and yet act as if it does not.  We would have you act in the knowledge that even the invisible has substance and intelligence.  And to act accordingly.  It would  help man to act to his best capacities and to elevate himself.  He would clean himself of the corrosion that hampers growth, his and all men.

He would open  himself to what is highest and best and be its reflection.  He would be able to judge behavior according to what is highest and best and want nothing less for himself or his brother.  But he must first know who and what he is.  And only in the silence,  Marshall, will man be taught.  He must go into the closet of who he is and listen.

You are right to sense the presence of others.  They are about and we are never alone.  We have not been abandoned.  We have chosen seclusion to accelerate our learning.’

Marshall listened, and tilted his head to catch all of Felix’s words.  Felix knew it took courage for Marshall to choose the route taken and his antennae were pointed to the heavens.

Marshall stood and then spoke.

‘It has all been written, hasn’t it? It was all put down somewhere, sometime.  That is what the brothers read and listen to, isn’t it?’

Felix shook his head yes.  He waited in silence..  There was something going on in this boy and would come forward.

‘There is some thinking I must do,’ Marshall said.  ‘There are questions I must put into words.  For some I know the answers and others I must feel out my answers.’  He turned and was gone.  Felix seated himself and closed his eyes and prayed the prayer of the select few who knew the power of words.

‘To the best and highest within me,  help me to choose the best and highest.  Amen and amen.’

I was fortunate to have a handful of friends in my life who loved me.    One in particular came to my home because she said she loved the feeling she had of being in a crowd of invisible saints. We were 5 in number of regular people  but she saw a roomful of saints.  We do entertain angels unaware, she one of them.    There are copies still available of Last Bird for $20.00 shipping included.

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Thought in Flight. . .

 

 

 

We cherish not the dream or the believer but the  One who sparks the dream.

*****

The bushel is moved and in the space of a candle, the world is lit.

*****

Love ventures into areas where courage falters but the heart makes waves.

*****

The highest framework we can choose is one by which the heart is healed.

*****

Eyes that once are opened will always see and ears that once are opened will always hear.

*****

Those whom we trust, reach out and touch the fear in us and lay Grace to it.

*****

To see through eyes of an Other will put one’s heart into divine orbit.

*****

You wrapped me around your heart and you will have to wear me like a pacemaker.

*****

We plunder our children’s wealth by casting doubt on their veracity and then weighing them down with guilt.

*****

The original meaning of adultery was to bed someone unlike oneself.  Man then made the relationship legal and called it marriage.

*****

Humans dress themselves in expensive clothes to cover their attitudes.

*****

As an alien life form to another world,  I hope I am viewed with compassion.   Your hope too?

 

 

Photo by Diane Rybacki

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In Tribute To A Beloved. . .

To Lift The Plough At Last. . .

 

She said to me that when she felt Spirit ebbing,  she would toss her suitcase in the car and take off for The Farm.  She not only loved those who nurtured her but the Farm itself which somehow fed the city girl.  There, nothing was demanded of one except to discard all pretense, assume the mantle of charity  and hold high the torch of love.  In essence,  it refreshed and renewed.

We give gratitude for having had in our midst our beloved Susan.  It is only time which separates who we are.  In that place of no time, will come the most meaningful celebration.

To Lift The Plough At Last. . .

How great and wonderful
is the borning,
the breaking of dawn
fast in the East.

How blessed is the soul
intent on magnifying its god,
borned in the heart
of many lifetimes’ consciousness.

Naysaying all arguments,
lamenting all laments,
laying aside all agreements,
intent still, but weary.

It is a wondrous effort
the Great God instills in Man,
to plough the furrows of his life,

to lift the plough at last.

 

photo by
Kathy Qualiana

 

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Where Can We Go?. . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where Can We Go? . . .

As the sparrow falls it is noted
and the quality of life
is diminished by one.
Long ago the feathers were counted.
The color of the downy beast
was subtly painted into the rainbow.

A child is born
in the forgotten regions
of a world too busy to take note.
The borning is observed however,
by the cosmic populace.
Its growth watched and shepherded
and when the child cries,
the heavens lament.

There is no least in quality or number.
Each healing heart is calculated
to keep a world intact.
Each blink of an eyelid, reason enough
for the sun to keep itself alive.

The coming together and the going apart
is through a door opening and closing
onto a portion of life, indissoluble.

Now it is here, now gone from here,
now it is here.  Disappearing from
this place, it takes form in another.

The sparrow sings in another tree
and his song is heard by one
who left the here and followed.

Where can we go and not be found?

 

Photo by John Holmes

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Time In The Heart. . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time In The Heart. . .

I was an oppressed people.
I wandered long
and became very tired of wandering.

I hugged the banks
of the green river and
shredded lives of high caliber.

Crying hard and loud
I voiced irritation
that rubbed edges raw.

And soon I walked
into the promised land.
Even before, even before I died.

It was green and fertile
and without enmity.
Without rancor I tended gardens.

And in the wide calm of doing
I knew of Being.
Ah it was so.  It was so.

Tending the cabbages
I found the young fruit sweet.
Tending the orchards, I found the hearts tender.

It was in the doing that I found beauty.
And I know it has never been done this way.
And I have done it before.

Each time fresh, each time new,
but the promise and the land even
more beautiful than I had remembered.
But even now, new eyes approach mine
and I whisper. . . search for it,
search for it.
It is real and when you find it,
you will know it never was a place

but a time in the heart.

 

art by
Claudia Hallissey

 

 

 

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The Lighthouse. . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Welcome. . .

Come, we walk.
Take my hand.
Lean on me for a time
to gain a respite
for a work unending.

I stand by you,
ready to catch you
if you fall.
My arms are steady
and ready.

I will not stumble,
so do not be afraid.
It has been a hard journey
and you tire.

I’ve stood the watch
and marveled
at your tenacity,
your perseverance.
Though you faltered,
you stood upright
without hesitation.

Now breathe easy
for a job well done.
No one could have done it better.
Welcome to the winner’s circle.

It was worth the run, don’t you think?

 

photo by
Joe Hallissey Sr.

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To Richly Endow. . .

To Richly Endow

My head swiveled when I heard the elder blurt out, ‘but you are lucky you like to pull weeds!’  I stared openmouthed because she was serious!  I thought of the past hot week where the sun did not blink and the temperature and humidity hovered at ninety.

Upon her arrival for dinner she marveled at the lush lawn and neat garden.  It wasn’t by magic but by adherence to a vision in my head of other lawns and gardens.  A vision so firmly held that my hands worked while my mind was in dialogue.

Property to me was as far down as I dared to think and as high up as I could see.  Large enough to raise children and then one day too large to keep as I desired.  But that Sunday afternoon the conversation turned to those poor people she said who only had one or two interests.

I ventured to say that was what libraries were for and fields and parks and many things free.  Parents were supposed to expose children to these things so that interests would expand.

‘Not everyone is lucky enough to like to pull weeds’ she reiterated.  Across my mind were the hot summers growing up where our livelihood demanded that we work together to cultivate cucumbers, vegetables weeded if there was to be produce for the market.  And I thought of my mother who listened to us harangue about friends who went to the beach while we worked!

But early on secretly of course,  we enjoyed our siblings.  We learned what it meant to contribute to everyone’s well being; our contribution was meaningful.  We had fun with each other but our hands did something of value.

I followed suit with our children as my siblings did with theirs; an added dimension to life that sustained us all.  Taught we were to learn to do useful things.  Preceding beautiful was useful.  In time we found a certain comfort in what our hands could do.  In trials and crises when Spirit needs comforting, we turn to those things learned with hands that were practical and creative.  Mother’s patience endowed her children to a degree she could not have imagined.

A priceless gift was bestowed.  Our confidence was affirmed though I am sure the initial attempts were more bother for her than help.  She could not foresee the carpentry or the iron sculpting, the artistry in her children’s lives.

Our minds paint pictures for us.  Some dismiss them without thought.  Others of us try to duplicate what we see in our heads.  As I walked and saw early attempts in the first balmy days of spring the efforts to make beautiful,  I wonder the people’s early teachers.  Who loved them enough to stay the early pains to set the example.

The elder relative perhaps was right.  I was lucky I liked to pull weeds.  To go beyond the sweat to see the beauty in labor, the virtue in making beautiful.  I have been lucky to be able to appreciate the wonders of life and the great good luck in helping to keep it beautiful.

 

photo by
Kathy Qualiana

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For you especially. . .

The Roses Are For You. . .

I tell you true.
You were known
before you came here
to this vast land.

A waste for some,
a paradise for others,
for one a dim place and
for another the sun shines.

You took upon your Spirit
a work, a job,
looking to make a difference.
You said to send you
where your heart could
change the world . . .

And you were given
your wish, hard as it seems.

You have not failed.
Your ripples are felt
on unnamed shores
and even the unborn
know your thoughts well. . .

Come, be kind to one
the heavens sing praises for.
Your work is virtuous
and your talents creative.
We make bet on
the one winning the trifecta.

The roses are yours.  For keeps.

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Attitude of Gratitude. . .

 

 

 

Simple Things . . .

There is comfort
in the simple things. . .
the cup of hot coffee
in a favorite cup,
the warm bathrobe,
threadbare though it is,
the slippers, warm and high
around the ankles,
the fire in the grate lit by a device
with a flick of the wrist.

Quickly now,
because energy is at a premium
with appreciation immense;
nothing is taken for granted.

But with gratitude
for the minds at work that make
the gracious present.

Memory serves to enhance
the joy incumbent in the tangible.
What was, once served its purpose

and fleshed out a life or many simply to live.

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