Archive | Poetry

Under The Wings. . . .

 

Psychic phenomena is truly memory.  It is memory from another time and place.  When my mentor, the Nazarene, spoke of talents and told multitudes to increase those, to me he spoke of being open and working with what was within.  He also spoke of what moth and rust do not destroy which are things of the mind.

Not material things, but ideas, things learned that hold us in good stead for worlds we will enter.  Man was closer to his Source  than he would ever be again.  There were things man did easily and with no hesitancy because it was commonplace to do them.  To some, things were magic but to others it was simply a knowledge of principles at work.

To turn water into wine, to walk on water, or to be able to feed multitudes with scarcity of bread are discredited by those as a turn of phrase.  That there are principles of illusion at work or the knowledge of them, are quickly dismissed.  But there are worlds where these principles are at work and those who come to birth in Earth soon learn to hesitate in using them.

The fear of ridicule is great and history of our own Salem, MA is still uppermost in the memory of the most vulnerable.  There are others who do not relish the intent of memory.  That they are painful and confronting means immense work.  They simply are not cognizant of the rewards.  Yet memory is what composes us all.

In order for no rip or dichotomy in us, there must be a sifting and sorting to gain courage to stand and say what we remember.  We are recognized by a parent or both that we are different.  And most of us were told by parents or by the church that to dabble in spirits is the work of the devil.  And Salem took care of those we learned.

Hard going for those of us who could not silence the memories or the remembering.  Labeled too smart for your own good, or worse, who do you think you are, are levelers of the soul.   The sadness lies in the fact of innocence and naivete, in the not knowing that these are gifts of supreme talent and high caliber.

Levelers are employed to keep one in place.  This too, we learn and carry with us and make better choices.

Consider This. . . 

What makes you think we do not use
a worker who thinks and injects
new thought in old ways?

What makes you think we would let loose
the likes of you in a world for frolic,
for nothing more than waste?

We look for farmers for the vineyards,
for the fields needing seed,
for feed, for thought, for starving minds
as well as bodies.

Where we put you is in a place of value,
of your talents, of your loves, of your
sweet thoughts feeding the children of all ages.

How else to sweep clean the Father’s house?

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Time To Love One Another. . .

 

Since the beginning of December, we have been on a fast track.  Upcoming was a family vacation away for the son and in law daughter  I live with and their family and me on the premises here in California having my elder son and in law daughter visiting, keeping watch.  They worked things out pretty neatly.  I am fortunate.

And the visiting watch keepers went home to Chicago and the vacationers returned for Grandson Josh and son John to tear out the kitchen to be remodeled.  Except it included building out a wall to the house and tearing down inside walls and ravaging.

I complicated matters by coming down with my yearly bronchial cough making me sound the ever coalminer.  I sought refuge in my room because truly the cough took whatever energy I had to care whether school kept.  I did not care one iota.

We are nearing departure for Josh with the end results of remodeling to be finished by son John.  I could not conceptualize the ending result because it was so outside my frame of reference.  I am more comfortable with worlds at large and their space in mind.  More comfortable also with yarn and fabric in a wall quilt and Scandia hat.  How I supervised the addition of rooms to a previous house we lived in I do not know.

It proves to me that if one by intention shows up for work, heaven takes that as a good to go sign and shows how.  Workers have always been scarce. Just remember the vineyards that lay waiting even with the promise of all the wine on the vine!

Now that the holidays are over and everyone can relax or recover their normality, or perhaps the time this year for your family was good, we simply begin again.  I take you back to a time before the devices starting eating up our time together.

Maybe we could try to bring back some of it by looking at each other whom we know and love and caring less about the likes of those we don’t even know!

I Take Your Hand. . .

Come, I take your hand.  We go to
places where our hearts share dreams.

Sometime back, in our histories
having no years, we trod places
where paths had not been worn.

It was a good time, seeing how
we formed lives with no lesson plans,
loved with no time and lived fully aware.

We remember now when the hands
of the clocks tell us we have only so much time;
only so much time to check emails, to see
bank statements, and to note how many Likes
from those we don’t know.

And only so much time before
the next commercial break and then

we might have time to love one another?

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I Cherish A Good Hope. . .

 

Machiavelli’s letter to Vettori. . . .

In the Vettori letter, Machiavelli had written the following,  “The evening being come, I return home and go to my study; at the entrance I pull off my peasant clothes, covered with dust and dirt and put on my noble court dress and thus becomingly reclothed,  I pass into ancient courts of the men of old, where being lovingly received by them, I am fed with that food which is mine alone; where I do not hesitate to speak with them and to ask for the reason of their actions and they in their benignity answer me and for four hours I feel no weariness, I forget every trouble, poverty does not dismay, death does not terrify me; I am possessed entirely by those great men.”

(I have said so often to those who care about me, that when my evening comes and my world sleeps, I get a second wind and take to my books.  And it is within the solitude of my self,  I have the conversations and learn of great things that I, in this very humble human body,  have not been able to afford either the lessons or time  to dedicate my life to.  It is only within the dark ending hours of the day that time is mine and my advocates take me into their charmed circle and from them come the arguments and chants of lifetimes of learning.  These are served to me on dishes of great beauty and is the food which feeds the starving mind.  It is a charmed circle I enter and I am a cherished participant.  I could not write these words and mean them if they were not true and if this had not been my life. It would be impossible for me to conjure this scene unless I was part of it.

There will be those who ask what is it she smokes?  And I only smoked the legal stuff when I smoked until my heart stopped twice and then I stopped.  I do not drink so my writing is sober.  But when I write it is with a heart beating to full capacity and words spilling onto the paper that I find compelling.  They have been faithful friends through my years and here I am at the closing hours of a lifetime grateful for so many good things.  And with gratitude that lessons were taught that have stood me in good stead when things were not good to my thinking.  I pause and let the poetry speak.)

(excerpted from The Ancestor . . )

Mine (world) is shadowed by memories,
searching for a haunting place.
I make room for memories. They will live and move
and have their being in me.
They may forget my name but somewhere in time,
a memory will rise and a child will make room for me.
I will welcome her and assure her that I live

and that life is everlasting.

(excerpted from We Can Go Home Again. .)

I’ve taken the long way home and
nearing the gate, please catch me, I say
and pull me on through.
I will answer c’est moi, it is I,

to prove we can go home again and again.

Plato pronounced two thousand years ago,  the reply he puts into the mouth of Socrates while waiting to drink the Hemlock.   “I would not positively assert that I shall join the company of those good men who have already departed from this life; but I cherish a good hope.”

I cherish a good hope that I will be allowed to sit and listen and learn.  I cherish a good hope. veronica                                                                                             

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An Argument Still. . . .

 

My mentor, the Nazarene  said,  seeing you will not see and hearing you will not hear.  Why is it when we profess to be followers and even from the pulpits, do not venture to ask,  what did Jesus mean when he said those words?  We think because we see what we see, it is all that there is to see!  And hear what there is to hear!

As humans all, if we do not even hear or see the cry in Crisis,  we are in peril.

An Argument. . . 

It was an argument
persisting its stuff as
all of them do.

 

I say. . .
the camera portrays
what the photographer perceives.

And he insisted. . .
that the camera sees
the fact in nature
and records it as such.

I say. . .
a fact in nature changes
as the person perceives it.

What do we do. . . .
if what we see is not
what the photographer sees?

I say. . .
get thee to an altar and pray.
Rightly so.
Go find an altar and pray.
So that what is perceived
as beautiful, as poignant
or a crime to humanity
is what we see.

Quickly. . . .
Go find an altar to pray
for your heart is in imminent danger.

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Sometimes, more than cola. . . of course with hot tea. . . .

 

With all that is happening on our national scene and our global scenes, we all need something that will settle the dyspepsia.  It seems I have run out of tonic water and cola so a good stiff drink of something we should find, with hot tea, of course.

I was again reminded that heavy thought like continued heavy dinner fare soon brings on cardiac problems to the neophyte.  Those in my peer group have time given in survival techniques using some long tested straight shots of oblivion.

I scribed the following in 2016 and the requests have been heartwarming.  Even the Sages took issue with my discipline of ‘serious business’ as you see with the poem’s tone.  But are we not again in the midst of serious business and needing a touch of levity?

And this soul of no fun at all. . . had to laugh.

Around The Bend. . .

I was told you have stretched
your boundaries as far as you can and the rest
will require another world.

You work too hard at this, he said.
Break the pattern, because you do not need
more information to underscore what you already know.

What good to understand worm holes and
black holes, white holes and time warps.
You work with them every night when
you flutter in and out of worlds, and
know your way around the bends of light.
You don’t need anything more.

You need a good stiff drink of more than cola.
Love, take a bender.  You need rye, straight.

I say, around the bend
there will be a hand;
someone to pull me up. . .

around the bend will be a someone
to pull me up. . . . .I know.

2

Enter Ye, Cautiously. . . .

 

Enter Ye, Cautiously. . .

‘May I enter your house?’ I asked
and  you answered, ‘yes, but cautiously.
You must discard all pretense, assume the mantle
of charity and hold high the torch of love.’

‘Ahhh,’ I said, ‘but would I qualify?
‘This house I see has a green carpet
with blue ceiling, mystically supporting
poufs of cotton, shadowing and lined with sparklers.
It has spheres of light masking the dark outlines
of animation, movement in forms
different than my own.’

‘I have lived in this house and participated
in celebrations of great sorrows, have laughed in truth
and wept with joy.  I have danced in funerals
and in great succession marched words through
battles of mind and spirit.’

‘I have accused myself and have hung by fingertips
grown numb and identified the faults of Others
only because I identified my own.
I loved and continued  to love in the face of contradictions
because I did not know what else to do.
There is nothing left now, so I ask,
may I enter your house?’

‘What have you described?’ you chide as I stand astonished.
What else is there I wonder and
what is to be exchanged.

‘I hang a star,’ you say, ‘midst the night sky,
and in the quality of your God you will build
your world.  It will not be mine but yours.
And when you leave the spot holding you hostage,
you will take your world and those becoming to it will enter.
But entering also will be the dark angels,
but with premises swept clean,
they will delay littering.  But once established
the land will become familiar and they again litter
and your sights will be pinned on Me.’

‘And I will hear you ask again,
may I enter?  And I will say, all ye who enter here,
discard pretense, assume the mantle of charity and
hold high the torch of love.’

‘I see,’ I said
‘and then the Father’s House will be swept clean.’

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Straight on Through. . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Emile. . . . 

‘Do come in,’ she motioned to the visitor.
‘Things are not straightened, but they will be shortly.’

The large home had seen numbers of people
marching through the hall; booming voices, woman whispers,
babies’ tears baptizing the walls and christening the marble.

The gentle woman swished quietly to lead the way;
her skirt evenly hemmed and velvet ribbon
threaded through  the eyelet collar.
Her hair glistened with care and was piled
neatly in waves as gentle as she was.

‘Come this way,’ she said as they moved through
a group of people murmuring importantly.
‘They will be going shortly,’ she said.
‘These people won’t be here long.  We will take
the table in the corner.’

And they made their way to the table
and looked at each other for the first time.
In her eyes she hoped the pity would not be evident.
Within a moment the guest knew it was.  But Emile,
true to the cut of her coat, rejected and dismissed
what she saw.

‘The people here are not for long,’ Emile said.
‘The family has so many parties I cannot keep up.  The house
is hardly large enough anymore to hold them all.  But soon
it will be quiet.  It is getting late and time for them to go.’

The rest of the visit was not a replay of times long gone;
no memory of dreams dreamed or books discussed.  No
memory of philosophical turbulence enjoyed.
The guest in time stood up to leave.

‘Emile, it has been a wonderful visit.  But I must get home
and see to dinner.  We will do this more often.
With so much to do each day, we seldom have time to visit.’

And Emile led the way to the door, rounding the tables
like the lady of the house seeing to everyone’s comfort.

At the curb was a car waiting with a grey haired man
standing by.  ‘Hi, Emile!  Hope you and Mother
had a good visit.  Sure do miss Alan and John now
that they’re gone.  We were good buddies.’

Emile waved her hand and puzzled to her guest.
‘He looks familiar, but  who is that old man?  Is he
the grandfather of one of your children’s friends?’
The old friend took Emile’s hand and said,
‘he is my youngest son, Paul.  You remember Paul.’

Emile smiled blankly and withdrew her hand.

‘No ,’ she said.  ‘I only know you.’
And she thanked her friend for coming and
promised a neater home for the next visit.
She then firmly closed the door.
Her friend walked down the stairs.
Emile was right for the guests soon followed.

Paul took his mother’s hand and helped her to the car.
He looked at the imposing Home and whispered,
‘I wish we could afford such a place for you.
The Largess is the best retirement home in the state.
And we can only give you a room in our house.’
Sighing, ‘where to my lady?’

And in a clear voice allowing no nonsense, she roared,
‘home, Paul, home!  To where I am no guest and do not tire
from using energy to keep a dream alive.  Home, Paul, home.’

And the rest of the journey was straight on through.

1

It Is A Gift. . . .

 

‘Each lifetime lived adds to the cumulative sense of loss.’
the teacher

All Who I  Am. . .

I feel the pull of the Polish one bent over her bread board,
pounding, kneading, smoothing the egg dough
into a satiny mound.  Raisins, like eyes, half buried
in the fleshy loaf, stare at me, daring me to absorb
her rhythm into my blood.

Her aching restlessness I breathe already.
Her utter frustration to make new whips me to
a working frenzy, a woman possessed.  She delivers me
to my bed in agony.  With memory splintered, glinting
off the corners of my eyes, I find me.  And awake again
to a morning promising me no relief from her visions.

II

My brow furrows, forming ledges to shield my eyes
from a sun that beats unmercifully.  Sweat pours to drench
my body and nausea routes its way flooding
an overloaded circuitry.

The wandering tribesman leading the camel favors one foot.
Calluses shoot pain into the moon calf of his leg and I limp.
The tart taste of yogurt in his mouth washes clean
the sand out of mine.

Each step becomes a mile in length and his laborious effort
throbs in my temples.  I will be harvest for the flies.
I cannot bear the heat anymore.

 III

The air, sharp as a cut lemon, washes me.  The children race in
their overlarge sweaters with roses painted on their
faces smooth as milk legs.  Lace fringe curtains entertain
the visitors agape at the starkness, the simplicity,
the square picture.  I am at home.

The arctic terrain beats my blood to a froth with exuberance.
My sturdy body matches my earth.  My love shields me,
woos me and I am as cherished as a milk cow in a land
of sparse grasses.  To each other we are the heavy cream
poured on a dish of skyr .

IV

How far back do I dare reach to uncover all who I am?

Is part of me racing, black skinned and hot, basket overflowing,
precariously balanced on my head and heart beating
outside my skin?  My loose breasts clap-clap in pain
against my rib cage as I hurry to make up time spent chatting
with my sisters, fearful of the masculine outrage brewing?

I sit at my desk, surrounded by the present essences of
today’s people, today’s commitments.  The air is spicy with
fomenting earth.  My brow does not furrow from the heat yet.
Summer’s dog days will arrive too soon.

I ‘ve reached backwards and sideways and tasted portions of lives
both palatable and unpalatable.  But altogether rich.  Is my
fatigue of genetic empathy, perhaps imagination gone wild
or an accumulation of too many lives lived, too many
sorrows sorrowed, too many dreams dreamed?

V

The answer will be mine.  With my departure I will take
the sum of my days, the loves loved, the dreams unfulfilled
and all who I am and walk again the cosmos.

And because of my love for me I will create another world.
Due to my cumulative sense of loss. . . .

There will be no more loves aborted.

5

The Farm Woman. . .

 

Someone probably said, considering there is nothing new under the sun, I knew the journey my spirit would take would be the one closest to my heart.  That would be  the earth and sky of course, a farm.  

The details would be only as difficult as I could overcome and not more than I could handle.  I would of course argue that premise.  In retrospect it was the most influential segment of my life. 

Directing and encompassing the who I became to love the Earth Planet as the grandest classroom ever given to viable, developing creatures with potential who worship learning. 

Having said that, my wish is for overwhelming intellects equipped to keep our planet safe and prospering healthily so the young need not worry they will have no dotage. 

It is a beacon to the Universes and we are more than one.  And nowhere are the conditions as ripe for  ideas with materials  becoming expressions as this planet.  Pray that we take only good what moth and rust do not destroy when we terminate our stay, so that we only enhance life elsewhere in whatever form, in gratitude for what we are gifted.

The Farm Woman  . . . 

Woman of the Earth, you are loved.
You gather the fruits of your labors
to your bosom and feed the children.

You’ve inched your way along the
dusty path with back bent in great fatigue
and cultivated rows yielding wise fruit.

You would feed out of your mouth those
you think hungry and then beyond measure.
The fruits are the heart of your labors , the harvest of
your mind’s philosophy, spilling indiscriminately.

Who is left to feed you, farm woman?
What commissary is left open to feed your
hungry soul after hours?  What bookstall will
house the words between stiff covers
to increase your harvest?

Labor, till the sun closes its blinds on the day.
Restless legs will speed you through the night

to find the bins ever full.

2

A Respite. . to walk the fields. . .

The Door Closes . . . 

You say the door closes
behind me and you cannot follow.
I take my place beside the one
who holds my ceded heart in his hands.

All I know is here is the place I belong.
No other place feels right.
Though as I walk in other places,
they seem to be the places needing work.

I miss the belonging that once I had
in the arms tightly holding heart to heart.
It is now an isolation that accompanies my every day
with an emptiness that does not leave.

Nighttime brings my companion
and I to his side.  And I am at home again.
We walk my fields and I do not rush away.
It does not last, for morning

brings to light the day’s increment
of work and commitment.  Time was
when we  wound our arms tightly but Conscience
awakened me to finish a work once begun.

Those arms no longer fit the who I am
so it is my loss and isolation.
Yet that will be remembered always

as the time our arms fit and wound tightly.

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