Last night I woke in eerie light,
Felt called to walk barefoot outside—
Face turned up under full Moon
I heard a nightingale from nearby hill
Sing and sing such lovely tune.
So small a throat! So small a throat!
Yet between gusts of wind
She pitched a sound whose clarity
Flooded this side of sense with grace, elevated common
Earth that was otherwise merely dense.
Was there effort called forth from this bird?
Did she struggle with every breath
To sing beneath Moon’s light to sanctify
Night with soaring sound so clear and fine?
Or was this her sigh of wordless prayer—
Escaped her heart in ways
She could not help nor stop,
Moved to celebrate the shining Light?
Secrets don’t just sit there,
Though they may be silent.
They slither like a garden snake.
Worse are those with venom,
Coiled to strike arching through the air.
Standing by pools of water,
Beware the moccasins ready to seduce,
Rattlers hiding among the stones—
Be careful not to startle
Reptilian fight or flight response.
Then there is the grueling stress of
Pythons wrapped around your lies,
Constricting blood and breath
As they tighten, tighten more—
Serpents sleeping in your past.
Please, do not plead ignorance
Nor split the trembling air with forked tongue.
Pay attention to your dreams,
Spilling grace incarnate from your sleep.
Sit among lanky trees in early morning
As mercurial forms appear within the fog,
Clarifies as Sun burns haze away revealing truth.
Outside, where bitter wind blows hard,
Straight line drawn upon the road.
Beyond is where wild things live,
Roar of hungry beasts heard within the dark.
Inside cold house where hate resides
Other lines from veins are drawn in blood,
By sweep of sword before lined sky,
Screams are heard before they die each day.
Deep inside the Soul a clean line drawn,
Contains a Word where truth breaths free,
In death-still darkness finds a rising Light,
Hope standing strong beside eternal dawn.
All lines drawn upon bare ground
Pass as dust beneath hot Sun,
Divide the One to Two unfound
Till at last a greater Whole becomes.
Walking down to the lake
Late at night in the blue of the dark….
I stood alone on the dock
With full Moon ready to rise.
Moon and I sat there
Facing each other across the water,
Looking into each other’s eyes…
“A lovely night,” I say to the Moon.
He appears to pay no heed at all,
Refuses to budge or turn his head,
A lazy candlelight shifting from red
Like an unwavering spotlight shining there,
Evolving in silence to white, to silver
Unblinking like eternal stars far overhead.
I couldn’t resist his kiss.
Do I hear a whispered word….
A sigh he might be sad or cold?
Suddenly a deer appears from the dark,
Footsteps stop as she turns her head.
She sees the water flowing
And stares at the great white Moon.
Is she also enchanted as I am enchanted,
Opening heart to the world with love?
She lowers her head as though in prayer,
Demurely prods at the ground,
Silently submits to the kiss of the Moon,
Then slowly she moves on.
There is a tender heartbeat deep inside the Earth.
Can you hear it when you listen to stone
Mountains who have their veins deep underground?
Can you hear it in flowing streams that swiftly run,
Join the Ocean spreading out across the world?
Do you sense Earth’s heartbeat reflected in tides
Washing upon every beach to keep
Your footprints there upon the sand,
For not too long and not too deep.
Can you hear the heartbeat of your lover?
Opens, closes in quiet flutter
Inviting you to place of greater tenderness.
Do you see that you are part of Earth?
Take care, my love.
Take care of you and me and Earth
For always we are joined by
Heartbeat, eternal as the Universe.
We have taken the realm of God
Found here on Earth,
Made it a place of exile
Where no one can repose
Except in voyage toward death.
No longer does the Sun
Turn green the royal palms
But bleaches skin to white.
Oceans spawn waves of dark plastic,
Rivers run black with oil.
Day is no longer wholesome;
Stars of night are seldom seen.
No gracious spirit stirs upon the land
And birds of dawn no longer sing.
What have we done with the promise?
There is wind,
But within the wind
Is not heard the Voice of God.
There is fire, but it consumes.
And the fire is not God.
Dedicated to my sister, Jane (1944-2014)— Until that day when we are joined as One.
Come join me in service to the Earth.
Let us woo the nations
Back to sacred relation with the soil,
Floating in clean waters of our senses,
Hands digging in direct contact with the natural world.
Leave behind all that is abstract in your mind.
Where we go we will fall in love
With whole of Nature and Cosmos,
Resting in beginning, ending of each day,
Trusting only what we experience—
Wordlessly in sight, taste and smell.
Let us feel the wind
As it caresses our faces,
Allow the ground to be our ground
That sustains us safely
Through every storm,
Walking slowly, humbly under white clouds,
Cleanse the soul in holy rivers,
Rest in silent stone of sacred mountains
Under canopy of stars of day or night—
Hear the lush but simple melody of Life.
Together— never as one alone,
We will breathe in a world of wordless meaning,
Sleep and wake in a living world
Where violets bloom in spring—
Walk in service to the Way,
Finally find ourselves
Within great shimmering eternal web of Life.