- How It Is With God - Inside
This Vase - Judgement - Lost
At Last - For Adam
No Fear - Recipe
For The World - II - Separated
From The Beloved - Swimming
The God I Want - The
Hunt - You Saw Her - The
Reminders - How Love
The Leap - In
a Perfect World - The Serpent
I can taste the ocean in my tears
sitting in this leaking boat,
bailing furiously --
cursing the Fates for this fate.
am afraid of drowning.
waves are rocking me,
upsetting my balance.
I could only remember: the ocean refuses no river.
I could become the ocean,
my fears would disappear,
and I would be doing the swallowing
instead of being swallowed.
am at the edge of my endurance --
resisting this falling,
fighting the inevitable.…
I am engulfed by water.
Fear turns to Panic --
Then all is quiet.
am huge and silent.
Filled with life.
Profound and encompassing.
is I who refuses no river.
is space here.
am seeing with millions of eyes,
swimming and flying and crawling.
I am waving at a thousand shores.
I am oceanic. Ecstatic.
… Drown in my love.
it is with God
is how it is with God.
hesitate, and the drawbridge closes.
Defend, and the walls rise around you.
Judge, and the wall falls down on top of you.
you relax into knowing, the walls disappear completely.
the view is terrifying --
seeing through God’s eyes overwhelms those who are unready.
you shut those God eyes tight and hide behind comfortable limitations?
you think you are is dense, gray rock.
And your beliefs are mortar holding those stones in place.
are the stonemason, building the tower around yourself.
moment you’re on automatic, your hands place another block
into place, further obscuring the view, keeping you apart from
both invisible enemies and your closest neighbors.
built your own prison. And your beloved is outside the prison
walls, calling your name.
forgotten doors and windows, but high above you the sky is still
has this work cost you? Only your freedom and your life.
be free, give up this stonemason’s job. Put away the trowel.
up a sledgehammer and break down the walls of separation.
beloved awaits your freedom.
this deep blue vase are two snakes --
connects the sun to the earth
one flies between the stars,
holding space and time together.
they mate, they give birth to the whole world --
to feathers and bones;
ivory carvings and
arrows made of wood and stone;
the soft warmth of flesh;
the ending of hunger and war;
and the laughter of love.
are inside, and so is the one who holds this pen.
the mystery. The ever-present mystery.
When you want to leave the vase, just smile.
breath will carry you home.
you will have left your image indelibly etched
on the inside.
walking around in judgment
offering my opinion to all those around me
whether they want to hear about it or not.
is crowded in here
amongst all the points of view
attempting to express themselves.
too fat!" says one.
Another chides "Yes, but they carry themselves well for all
A third interrupts: "It's not their bodies, it' their slovenly
And a fourth: "That's unkind -- I thought you were enlightened!"
arguments go on all night, leaving me drained and exhausted.
I wake up, it is quiet.
I look around cautiously.
they sleeping nearby?
If I get up slowly, perhaps they will remain asleep.
afraid that the merest sound will wake up the chorus,
and they will once again begin their incessant chattering.
this precious moment, I can see clearly.
Objects are objects. Spaces are spaces.
Events have no weight of opinion pressing down on them.
feel alive, fresh.
The entire world seems to have come to life.
My impressions are child-like, unfiltered and clear.
What are you doing! Adults don't do that!"
This critic has broken my precious concentration
and stolen the quiet moment away.
there something you're supposed to be doing?" chimes in another.
waters of opinion rise, engulfing me.
I go on, fighting my way through the loud voices,
Trying to remember who I am, and why.
am lost at last
caught up in sounds surrounding me.
and thoughts of other places –
palaces, deserts, cruise ships, encampments…
taste of dry air is on my tongue –
strange foods, exotic spices…
have never been here before.
My body is moved to African rhythms,
shimmering starlight above me,
red earth below.
feet touch earth warmed by the sun,
then cooled by night winds…
I take my stand –
look into the flickering fire for some trace of stability.
fire laughs and offers me charcoal.
The flickering says, "Draw your dreams here, in the shifting
But quickly – because all will change."
from the smoke emerges a clue
shaped like a song inviting me to dance again.
I enter the circle,
jumping from one foot to the other,
hands clenched around my old ideas,
holding tightly to what I have believed.
I fall to the ground, exhausted.
My eyes open, fill with stars.
My arms fall open to embrace the sky,
and I am filled with space from all directions.
am opened – like a cereal box,
like an oven,
like a Christmas present …
little self tumbles out.
is placed on the mantel above the fireplace
like a well-intentioned gift from a visiting relative.
I am the fire,
and the space that holds them.
longer the innkeeper –
I am the inn itself, and the entire mountainside.
am no longer a woman,
but the Goddess enfleshed –
the form which form desires to become.
am not a breath,
but life being breathed,
space between thoughts,
the molecular dance,
and the moving trance,
the whirling winds,
a million suns,
and the reason why
the rivers run.
is a magic trick --
out of a black top hat.
stare up, wide-eyed,
at the colored patterns on the
life is stretched, slowly, into adulthood,
like knotted scarves pulled out of a pocket
too small to contain them.
pours out of an empty jar like water --
it is emptied, then made full, emptied
once again, then overflows.
POOF! A sudden finale,
as the magician himself disappears
up the shirtsleeve of God.
sun emits no fear of ever running out of light.
moon reflects no fear of darkness in the cool of night.
are not afraid of losing some or all their leaves,
in the flow of nature’s generosity.
do not obsess about the things they have to do.
don’t concern themselves with running out of food.
ocean gives itself to sky, no fear of running dry –
is it then that I'm afraid? How different am I?
for the World
World is made of our assumptions.
Create it yourself…
with raw belief,
mix carefully with old ideas of how and should and must.
Add a sprinkling of supposed to, a jigger of always has, a flight
of ought and a thimble full of never has been before.
slowly at just right for forever and a day.
from oven. Present it on a silver tray for their approval,
cut into tiny consecutive moments of now, and pass it out to waiting
taste it tastefully, checking to see if and when and how much
was allowed, if rules were followed, traditions kept,
and the limits set for rising made it rise just the right amount.
itself is set atop the cake,
an icing full of righteous indignation
that Pride itself could be proud of.
can we have our cake and freedom too?
every morsel be just so?
lies creative license,
wild and crazy half measures
and frivolous additions?
open the hidden vault where love-crazed recipes are kept –
the ones that crazy wisdom loves –
where cakes fall into lovely tumbles,
themes are badly out of tune,
and adjustments are made to this here and now.
cook has our permission to just go nuts –
new configurations never been thought
drip wild ideas to splash among the tasters –
whose ravenous eyes crave new sensations
not satisfied with always was and never has been before.
former boundaries into flame,
set ancient patterns aside, asunder,
burst forth new colors never seen,
let frenzied freedom have its way,
and this dish begins to taste even better.
kitchen’s a mess.
boy, have we had fun!
from the Beloved
ego storm blew in last night –
driving rain pulled me apart from you.
winds scattered my attention across the landscape
so I'm not able to concentrate on the task ahead.
tracks have been obliterated by the sands.
I can't find my way home by walking backwards.
storm has soaked my memories –
once clear pictures are smeared, running down pages.
I could only remember your face,
I could smell my way back –
crawling on my belly,
tracking my footsteps by your scent.
am swimming in the ocean of gratitude,
salt tears falling into salt sea,
minerals in water into minerals in water.
have lost the boundary between my skin
and the warm liquid.
sting I feel is the shock of recognition --
How long have I been asleep?
And what is it that keeps awakening me?
clouds above have merged with sky --
No delineation, no distinctions.
horizon has faded in a rainbow of haze
and I am comfortable not knowing
where I am
nor how distant the shore.
lay back, the sea supporting me,
filling my ears with the sound of the world.
feel quiet, peaceful.
My tears fill the ocean,
and the ocean fills my heart
am alone no more.
My self is everywhere I look.
forgetting. Not two.
One body, one perception.
It seeing itself.
water, sky, self.
Tears and ocean.
God I Want
want a convenient God.
One that’s open 24 hours a day, and doesn’t close
want a God that can satisfy every hunger and
give me comfort in an attractive take-home package.
want a convenient God that offers off-street parking;
a God that counts out my change accurately
in a charming foreign accent.
want a God that will shape itself to my opinions,
encourage me gently in the direction that I’m already going,
and offer an understanding ear and a “There, there, Dear”
when I’m feeling troubled.
want a God that will leave me alone,
yet is always available when I feel needy;
but never makes me feel needy or alone.
want a God with shelves stacked high
with everything I might need,
but never tries to convince me to buy anything in particular.
One that gives me plenty of time to browse,
even read the newspaper
without getting crabby or impatient.
want a God that will serve as a reference point, an obvious place
to turn right or left, and gives me directions when I’m
A place where I’ll feel normal, yet special;
different, but not too different.
want a God just around the corner.
One that never closes – full of comfort.
One that makes me feel welcomed 24 hours a day.
wolf is pacing,
tracing the scent,
scanning the terrain for signs of this life --
the trail of blood that will feed this hunger.
eyes, seeking every sign on the path of prey.
Soft pads on paws silently pressing the earth,
a quiet approach --
this hard work, tracking.
now, the creature comes into view.
calculations begin. Distance. Approach. Route. Speed.
How stealthily can I approach?
Does the prey perceive me?
What is her most likely response? Her escape route?
I spring forward, calculating while moving,
watching, running, shifting positions -- left, right, forward.
The prey, alert, perceives my approach,
springs forward, dodging --
watching me with one eye, her escape with the other.
power is strong, my muscles at their peak.
I will win this one.
My distance closes.
No way this one will escape.
teeth sinking into flesh,
she is knocked off her feet,
looks up at me with a mixture of fear, relief,
and the ecstasy of being taken.
feast. Her eyes roll back.
We are both satisfied by this blood lust passion,
as we become one body, one life, one self.
saw her, and it was something –
something about her shape –
the curve of her waist as it became her hip,
or her mouth when she laughed – a smiling melody.
it was the shape suggested by shadows
on her midnight silk blouse
rippling beneath the surface as she turned away.
fire begins with one match –
or a spark –
or the heat of two objects rubbing together.
image arose as you imagined the two of you connected,
the sound of silk as it floats through the air to the ground,
the first sight of shapes in flesh,
wildfire eyes, hungry and burning.
you noticed the way she was standing, close and comfortable
with the woman who touched her like a champion show-dog,
stroking the long fur of her hennaed hair.
fall of possibility reminded you of the falling silk
hitting the ground with inevitable slowness
and landing, crumpled, on top of itself.
early evening moon,
a ghostly ball in the bright blue sky,
reminded me to be grateful today.
it was the sparkle of the sun
on the surface of the water.
nights ago, it was a glimpse of a mouse as it scurried beneath
the kitchen cabinet.
it was the memory of my daughter at age four
when she first made up that word.
am full of gratitude at these moments, as if a bell had chimed,
reminding me to breathe, quieting my mind for that long pregnant
reach up with my mind and Spirit, call to the Creator, open my
awareness to all things and beings, and cry out
Thank you for this moment of remembering where I come from and
where I am going! Thank you for everything alive and everything
that comes from you, Source of All!”
moment passes; I get back to my busyness, and patiently wait for
the next reminder.
is how love opens –
A rose in the sun, releasing its fragrance.
is how love grows –
A child at play, learning how the world works.
is how love expands –
Space and time, the speed of light.
is how love looks –
Your being here, now, before me, as myself.
is how love feels –
Immense weightlessness, floating in warm water.
is how love desires –
The desert wanting rain, the cloud wanting release.
is how love tastes –
Parsnip soup, foia gras, champagne, your tongue.
is how love sounds –
A diva singing “la Wally,” Scarlatti’s concerto,
is how love smells –
Your hair, your skin, bread baking in a warm kitchen,
the rose opening in the sun.
off the edge of the cliff –
to angelic forces
by none other than Desire –
blind in her advice to me:
I will always be here!”
sound of rushing wind
awakens me to notice that Desire spoke true:
remains at the top of the cliff,
observing my fall....
a Perfect World
is light inside all matter
and dark space inside all light.
you step up to the precipice,
you must be prepared to jump.
joy fills you, shout!
this moment with full frontal certainty.
A partial explanation will not satisfy the judge.
She measures you by your truth,
not your story about it.
you are clinging to life,
it is the same as clinging to death.
And seek clues among those who have come to celebrate with you.
the King dies, many struggle for power.
If the King had never been born, would the struggle cease?
a perfect world,
the avocado would have a pit the size of an almond.
cherries would have none at all.
it was the woman who started all the trouble.
him into the tree,
pull the cloak of mystery
around me like a shroud
hear a slithering
in the long grass
behind my steps.