Looking out across the lake in early morning,
I thought I saw shimmer of God
Quietly glimmering within reflection of God
Each small gust of wind creating waves
Dissolving God back into God.
I could not take it within,
Too dangerous it seemed, too vivid, too vague.
So I drove to church and sat in a pew,
The one place where I felt safe from God.
My hope– that these thick Christian walls,
Made of dense stone, might protect me,
Save me from an ephemeral, alluring God.
As Larkin once said in a poem:
“Once I am sure there’s nothing going on,
I step inside, letting the door thud shut….
Up at the holy end, the small neat organ;
And a tense, musty, unignorable silence,
Brewed God knows how long.”
Hopefully, here I could be at peace,
Watching the light cross the floor,
This sacred place where birth and death
Were married in an eerie silence.
Here, where so much seems obsolete,
I am surprised by a deep
Hunger to be grave and solemn
In this solitary, soft moment of quiet.
Whispering within my mind, I heard
“Here endth the reading of these holy words….”
Scripture seemed written upon my heart—
A pilgrim’s progress, if you will, smoldering,
Burning deeper, alive and distinct from my own will.
Why, I wondered, did Nietzsche say:
“It is indecent to be a Christian….”
I sat, as Buddha sat, in lotus fashion
Upon cold stone, close to weeping,
Close to praying, slowly breathing,
Raised from death into enlightened spaciousness,
Sitting in this House I did not build,
Yet here, at last, finding myself at Home.
Meister Eckhart said it this way:
“Man’s last and highest parting
Is when for God’s sake,
He takes leave of God.”
This is what Jesus would say:
“Verily, verily I say unto you
Except that a seed of wheat
Fall into the ground and die,
It abides alone,… but if it die,
It brings forth much fruit.”
Only in this moment of dying,
As I let go, do I begin to cross over
Into the vast return to God,
Spiritually naked, yet blessed—
Slowly walking all the way down
Bright Angel Trail, high cliffs
Casting morning shadows
Until I reach what might be
Called the Colorado—
At the bottom of the world it flows.
And here, I kneel and drink.<img