SUMMER BY THE SEA
FROM THE DESK OF...
A REMINDER FROM A BUDDHIST FRIEND WHO
Btw, his site, cuke.com, is always an interesting, authoritative saunter! While I'm stretching canvases in prep to paint next week...
One Humorous, Self-effacing Poem- Two Short Episodic Statements (Neither Humorous Nor Modest):
Do-Gooders and Me
THIS is me
Sitting on my bed in boxers and too taut tee-shirt/taut but wrong tissues, wrong places
This is me
The Zinnia on the balcony has mildew
The Rose as well
This is me
Idly watching a late evening British TV detective named Gently
Is that drool congealing around TV remote buttons?
Be careful, this is me
You never know what might flow from an empty mind.
There is an aspect of perception formed by a sense of ‘End Times’ i.e. an apocalyptic end of an age, kalpa, eon; of time, of history, life in general. (I think like that everytime I travel- ...and generally.) What it really reveals is sense of the constant presence of God- Union with which does not require space or time.
III. OFF TO SEE THE WIZARD,
Well, not thee Wizard. Call it magic if you like or Shamanism- white, green, brown or black sorcery; Maha Yoga, (The Great Vehicle), or the way of the Christian Thaumaturge (for whom the Christ is paradigm). It is certain states of awareness operating therein that I explore. “WHAT?!” you might say. ‘The distribution of charity is the proper task for a priest—But that is not as clear and clean as it might seem on the surface. Yes, ‘do-gooding’ sometimes does good. Is there less suffering in the world in the last 2000 years since the Lord Christ? 2500 since the Lord Buddha? 500 since the Scientific Revolution? No! There is more suffering! Doing good can have terrible results- Hitler was educated by the gentle Benedictines. One can’t know all the effects of action. Do-gooding can also provide cover for egotism, ambition, political and social manipulation to beat all. One must approach Charity with ‘fear and trembling-’ at least a sense of humor about one’s effectiveness and necessity.
The Sacred Scriptures also advise one to ‘know yourself.’ Thus, my interest in ‘states of awareness, or consciousness’ within a wide and colorful swatch of prayer! I believe such leads to a current in the Sea of Grace that provides both beggar and provider- leads to what’s necessary in both for Charity.
First, re #III above: Still, for me, the best, strongest, most beautiful people I’ve known were ones devoted to the life evoked by Charity, prayer and or meditation. But they also knew the politics, cultures, ecologies of the do-gooding they attempted- and themselves critically, honestly.
Second: Last week’s rant- “I don’t give a damn about Abstinence, but Chastity is absolute.” Obviously, the discipline and self-control of abstinence is important. But after a certain point of such personal and communal formation, one must face the powers of the world naked- so to speak. The drive to propagate one’s species and the need for others is only one such power and must be responded to in context. As St. Augustine said, “Love and do what you will.” But to love implies everything, including kenosis.
For my old friend, 'Sean,' who like several on my list, curtly
brushes away his fallen feathers...
loath to linger long with any single bloom- its of an age- and
It’s curious since your intell
is the sort both professional and academic
circles turn giddy
have always enthused over a garden's artistic produce
but resist urges to probe deeply the nature of nature and
hover now as
your feathers turn from iridescent to grey or fall out for good
A collection's rose gone woody, brittle and curled
stands bravely thus
its purpose past.
Can you summon the charge
for one last charge in this long battle?
For the nectar of the Heaven?
once it’s determined and
Feast of St. John the Baptist
First poem of summer '14
...black cormorants up from their dives, gape full.
Is it a new patron I sense, new interest in old topics. worthy to inspire practice. drawing requires practice. Eye hand coordination, precise muscle building in one's digits. I would have to massage those long round muscles, this time, prod every depression and knot. elbow deep and what would be the happy ending when one's only adequate lover is Godhead. the only lover who knows you, all of you, in absolute intimacy. and still wants you. what is enough- solitude, silence, stillness, patronage, acknowledgement, payment in full? long solitude allows actual memory- some deep. remembering familiarizes. Familiar does not surprise or shock. Allows one to admit, release, protective judgments-- Compassion, even for oneself.
LAGUNA NIGUEL/PALM SPRINGS
Mother’s Day ‘14
The Godhead might be likened to a mother wolf with adolescent cubs.
Wandering as I was prone,
I saw down the wild hill, a head sized block of broken statue,
A Grecian remnant perhaps, the Romans were all engineering and lust.
Hell of a climb down to discover a broken bit of plaster, construction discard.
Harder climb to discover what a Grecian Urn might contain,
Even the 'Empty Vase' quickens beyond imagination...
Godhead might snarl as any mother might in defense of her young.
Fangs enameled in stillness and silence. Enough to stiffen any dark fear that dares creation.
She's patient with play and learning, tolerant of husband/fathers who- after all
have both X and Y chromosomes, and thus prone to forage more selfishly.
Culture weaves a different pattern. But just enough- then so much more.
Best to run with the Gods, like the Nagas.
What was met in darkest night
Storm-laden and fragrant
Without benefit of light,
Rain to beat all,
Two storms in a desert drought
No time to whine or pout.
To ‘be gods ourselves’
Run the Fall
And hope the last content from the demon box
Will be enough when all is All.
dark night wet with creosote and sage
gravel soaked to flash...
Belie a faint but perfect gasp
For the last
was golden light.
And found in the dark- as before—twittering joy
And relieving stars that bedeck
A negligee of night.
In the land where river met sea,
A teacher met students of Vishnu, Chango and Alcibiades...
Together they wove there, spells becoming
Until, teacher was forced to withdraw
In flight, he took refuge with the Blessed Mother along Green River, above
Deep gorges and obscure ocher plains, dreaming now
Yellow leaved poplars- cottonwoods streaked with red.
...he walked the beach today and felt such delight and humor with life, its contents
It’s been said.