Archive | Poetry

No Space To Grow Bread. . . .

 

No Space To Grow Bread. . .

They are young, you say,
with hormones raging in bodies,
having no desire for libraries and
no entry monies for museums . . .  

In these places, soldiers in perilous times
were forever sowing seeds of freedom,
with farmers tilling soil of rocks and clay
to feed the freedom seekers. . .
and artists seeking to feed Man’s Spirit. . .

Not concerned these young, I say,
while making brothers and sisters
like themselves, for they
are not yet ready for parenting.

Bedroom gymnastics are played
and little discipline practiced
in the games of musical beds
with its consequences.    

We have seen when burgeoning fantasies
take their energies and hormones,
to crash with anger humankind’s masterpieces,
to appease an appetite out of control.

The children of hunger
with bloated stomachs starve to death.
Young girls are ravaged, young boys savaged
while in the lives of their elders,  
there is no hope of place to rest Spirit.

My Earth is in peril and its classroom in jeopardy.
No room for Earth is splitting its seams.
In good conscience, we cannot go forth and multiply.

There is no place and space to grow bread.

 

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Memory Quilt. . . in triumph warmed. . . .

 

Many of us have problems that have no resolution.   Even after doing all the things we have learned and read about and even those things we have invented, there appear no answers on the horizon.   We lose hope and we ourselves are at a loss. 

It seems strange and baffling that nothing is working.   It is then we confront the heavens and with a put up or shut up attitude, bow to a greater strength.   For if we don’t, then we must admit we are the strength for all time and all things.  And find it exhausting.  We may find ourselves powerless, unable.  Often we give up too soon,  never stretching our psychic muscles, so to speak.   And I would venture the great majority never pit themselves against the Great God and that is a pity. 

For regardless who or what it is we worship and revere, that SOMETHING  will pull strength from us when confronted over strongest arguments of whatever nature.   This is good.   For there are few times in the normal course of living where we pit ourselves against pain intentionally, be it emotional, psychological or physical.   We avoid it at all costs.   But when pushed to the wall,  there is that SOMETHING in us required, whether it is heaven’s requisition or our unconscious need to measure ourselves.

It is necessary for us to see how we measure up not only to our own estimation but against our parents and our peers.  And the latter can be so important that we look for arguments that are long and drawn out to see how well we fare in the battle.   This is not only true on a personal,  private level but think how our leaders pride themselves on the greater national and international stages.   And how many wars are fought because of this need to test mettle by those very leaders vowing that this war will end all wars.

 Some of us do this testing early on, setting a new direction and recovering in good health.  The puzzle pieces have a sought for place.   Others in despair require more time because their unresolves are more complex, but even they eventually realize their strength is a dependable strength. 

 Many lives are brought to fruition and our eventualities are all timely. 

Memory Quilt. . .

When it is time I will draw high
my memory quilt to cover shivering bones.

Pictured will be events richly patterned
and pleasing to the soul.

Astonishing not to recall emotions
pressed beyond belief, battles fought
to frightful finishes.

Left like barnacles clinging
to a disabled craft, slippery in substance,
suitable only for discard.

When it is time, the memory quilt drawn
will show kaleidoscoped events
lending warmth to fragile skin,

haunting in their beauty remembered,
while I take flight

in triumph warmed.

 

(The photo is of  my granddaughter’s treasure
of her shirts collected for me to make this quilt
of her young life.)

 

 

         

                   

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Time’s Solace. . . Appreciated. . .

When life generously offers some time to enjoy the last vestiges of breathable air, one guards those hours or days like Midas with his eyes on gold.  It is a gift to one whose head was incompletely closed and whose conscience unequivocally honed to needs of commitments.

So the free time, the private time,  the time given when nothing concrete is expected due to age and frailty of body is luxury seldom cognitively experienced.  The shelter in place edict has been the wish of mine all my life.  Not possible for three quarters of it, but desired.  To slow down and savor the salts used always was a wish.

Now it is life’s generous spirit balancing what was needed for so long.  Living to see, because of technology, the faces of the new babes entering and the love they are welcomed with is a joy. 

Not often is such evidence ours for spiritual solace.  Finding all beloveds nurturing in this sometimes sterile world lets me know that life’s commitment to teaching has been done wisely and well. 

Commitment is accountability for one’s actions.  Some call it a mortgage on one’s life.  It is a consequence of those actions.  We learn there never is a free lunch in town.  Better us to be called to account than for our progeny to hurt. 

There always is a cost and it is dear.   Life’s forgiveness?    Love. . . .

Mortgaged. . .

Our hands brush
the sleeves of our
long coats harnessing
our bodies’ warmth. . .

And meet and twine fingers
giving strength
long lost to the
business of living. . .

the busyness of lives

succumbing to the details
of days usurping
minutes not claimed,

hungry for times floating loose.
Wise is the one hugging closely
as breath to breathe what
surrounds the body as private.

Mine!  the toddler shouts,
as he grasps what is his
loudly with force
to claim ownership.

Mine man whispers as he
clings to the privacy of minutes
not already claimed
by the interminable needs

of the innocent. The
mortgaged soul has
needs to replenish
before offering more

from the well running dry.

 

photo art by 
Claudia Hallissey

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The Simple Often Says It Right. . . .

 

 

The Jenny Genes are rightly sometimes a curse as well as blessing.  It drives this writer to despair when the right word evades and the curse begins its perseverance work on me.  And search I do for the precise word.  For there is of course we think a precise word for everything.  We search through the day and half the night compelling the word appear.  Eventually we give up and lo!  The imprecise simple one is used and the heavens moan in relief.  And so the reader leaves the dictionary lay where it is.  We all take victories where we can. 

The Right Words. . .

She said the right words to the beloved.
Suck the fear out of it; it is the only way to go.

Because every morning throughout the world,
man does his ablutions in the privacy of the bush,
in the privacy of his very expensive room,
or in a modest place wherever he lives.

And hopes he releases his fear before
he appears to face beloveds and the day
overtakes him, leaving him soiled.

He whispered,. . . that is the way it is. . .
suck the fear out of it.

I don’t want a dead bird hanging
around my neck for the rest of eternity.
There is no final place but a place of becoming.

It is life everlasting in all its measures.

 

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Connections I know. . .

And you will know also. . . 

Nine years ago, when I was 80, a grandson said I should do a blog.  Not knowing what a blog was, he proceeded to teach me.   This perennial student did not want to disappoint the good teacher.   Edited here is one of the early posts where I try to explain my views.  For those who missed the first years I hope this helps to understand from where I come.

On Connections

‘This is an idea spoken of since man first began to think about the purpose of life.   Or perhaps his purpose on this planet.   It deals with the idea that every thing is connected throughout the Ethers.   That nothing happens in and of itself but is the result of an action happening because of a previous action elsewhere.   However long ago.   Our purpose,  however wrought with meaning as we think or not,   is the result of perhaps a stone let loose on some distant hill, rolling and crashing onto a field.    The storm in the night is the result perhaps of an argument lamenting the arduous activity of sea lions in some obscure waters.   The idea remains cleverly innate in heads looking for reasons to believe that of itself nothing exists.   We are connected,  one to another and one event tied us tightly to all of life.   It is with this idea in mind that this poem came to be.’

Because I Know. . . . 

I see worlds in motion
taking a portion of each one’s talent
for their own survival.

This is what I do with my hands.
This motion of knitting yarns to form

a piece of world to fit the mind
of an elusive soul.

See here, I, content  in what I do.
I free a soul to do the Great God’s bidding
in keeping a world in motion.

See again. . . I give of my Self in this time,
to free an Other to build what may be
the perfect Universe or many.

So content that this time is mine to see
a great plan, a strategy, yet unheard.
It may not be for centuries that

that my knitting fingers  will alert the senses
of a soul to keep in motion
a Life, a Being, an Idea.

Sit here with me. . .and show my hands
what to do and they will do.  The task so simple
will gather other talents and make for itself
the grand design,  futures down the line.

A bidding, the nature of what 
has never been seen before.
I know it and because I know

you will know it also.

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A divine observation. . . .

 

A divine observation. . .

 You take love
and wear as pearls.

Shiny tears they once were.
Shiny tears,

but they fell
to your breast

and now they are gems. . . .

                                              gems. . . .

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a soft goodnight. . . . .

A soft goodnight . . .

as night arrives and blankets all,
we take rest that is ours
and allow it to heal . . .

for it is no small thing given
but as with all, we use what is ours
and gently put the day to bed .  

the night still arrives on tender paws
to silence even the heart’s beating.
it is a soft bed we enter. . .

the day will have its demands
with another morning borning,
still we use our hearts .  

never to disregard thought,
but hearts must be followed.
so we take the night, love, and

wing it to the place of recovery and,
and bless. . . sometimes it is all we can do . . .  

 

journal entry 6 april, 1989
formatted 6.17.2020

photo Joe Hallissey Sr. 2012

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When You Have The Obligation . . .

 

Living The Martha Mary Story forever it seems. . . . . .

It was the Martha -Mary story which raised the hackles and had me fuming.  Martha wished to sit and listen to her friend and exchange thoughts but Mary of course took the seat.  Mary did not offer to pour milk nor water to the thirsting children and elders so Martha toured with pitcher in hand and fumed.

Jesus was attuned to this and chided,  Martha, Martha why do you fuss so?  Mary is only doing what Mary can do.

I am not really sure that anyone appreciated what Martha did.  Martha also did what only she could do because she saw what needed to be done.  No one else did.  No one.  Only her eyes saw the need.

There would be those who say that Martha chose to pour for the guests.  She could have said no and taken a seat.  But could she?  And did Mary see the need and choose not to service?  Or not eyes open and mind to understand?

I scribed . . .You have the obligation because you have the knowledge.   October 26, 1988

(my thoughts today. . . In other words  when you have the knowledge, you  have the obligation.  Also when knowledge roots and conscience is honed, options are fewer.  In some cases, options close.  (this is how saints are born on the job)

This is anathema to some because choice is a freedom and to say options close takes away that freedom.   Limited knowledge even then gives the favored ones many choices.  And looking at our world especially today, tells us that minorities are stripped of choices every day no matter their high credentials.

When reasons and explanations make the kind of sense that lead to understanding, it becomes knowledge.  Understanding does not necessarily make something easier to live with.  But when it roots and conscience is honed sharply, one sometimes sees an out but it is closed because that same knowledge sometimes presents fallout on innocent shoulders.  Conscience wishes not to wound.

And the only thing one can do is endure.

One is not abandoned because in the knowledge comes enlightenment which grants surcease from what grips in the dilemma.  Sometimes small comfort but in the broadening space given, this becomes the lifebuoy that keeps all afloat.  And in times like ours with so many devices blaring information 24/7 with no letup, a small comfort is acceptable with no argument.  And greedily grasped.

The Godfellows. . .

they crowd him, he who walks
the path like the pied piper.

the youngers follow like
so many puppies.

he bends to whisper the day good
into ears that hear his beating heart.

and their hearts beat with knowledge . . .
that they are both Divine. . . . .

(When it seems I flit with old and recent entries, it is because I finally understand  the quantum theory that all time is simultaneous.  Because I do, it is all happening now.  It is the only way to make sense out of my own why.  Work on it because otherwise the deep waters will entice.)

photo by John S. Hallissey

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Under One Name. . . .

 

 

Under One Name . . .  (Genesis. Chapter 1. Verse 26)

Even the big guys prayed,
the Kings, the Princes, the Presidents
and the Oligarchs with their buying billions,
in that part of the night;

the part that kept them all awake.
In that dark pit when even
the warm bodies beside them with
all the crevices and secret parts

shouting their places of comfort.
But none comfort, not one of them
stem the flow of wet panic
threatening to drown one even,

even with all their victories.
Because in that dark place
of the night when ghosts arise
threatening your extinction, you worry. . .

That not enough good
is in all of your Beings. . .
even parts you do not know who
might welcome you to the place you hunger for.

The place you came from
and have to get back but
do not know how; when we walked
and talked under the one name. . . God.

To become under the one name . . . Man.

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We Will Talk Again. . . .

We Will Talk Again . . .

We will talk of philosophy and
we will talk of poetry again like
. . . .once upon a yesterday. . . . .

We will talk of people and beings
whose lives are woven tapestries
of great wonder. . . .

And we will again grace the lovely work
of the Great God and say. . .

We walk beneath the wings of him
who holds us all together. . . . . .

 

(artwork by Claudia Hallissey)
(poem from journal entry July, 2013
but all time is now)

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