Friday, December 20, 2013

Freedom is not FREE

So. hard. to. be. thankful. for. these. dark. days

telling all
in confident terms
all is well
freedom's at hand!

back inside
there's no escape
a vice-like grip
on heart and mind...
soul like a specter
slipping through
bony, superhuman restraint

resist the urge
resist the urge to scream

focus on the blue sky
thy kingdom come…
in the luminous darkness
i remain

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

necessary subtraction

minus the drama and suffering of fools
take -away nonsense
subtract excess
less pettiness and negativity

plus quiet and
add-in long walks and dog petting
include plenty of  breath
increase yoga connections

inner peace
and equanimity

Saturday, November 16, 2013

everyday warrior

enter the battle alone

two inner worlds collide
is it a duel
or dual?

same story
same lies
hidden wounds  resembling
chalk-scrawl slashed on blackboards

backbone cracking
heart openers
bend and
like poprocks

don't even realize you are at war with yourself
how absurd you are ONE entity
a veiled binary code
full of divide and conquer
or deciphering integration
as pure experience?

clarity rushes in
painting over inner landscape
in sunny yellow strokes
covering the dark gray soot
of deceit

the battle resumes
facing demons
grants secret crevices
to ooze and release their shame

fragments scatter
like decaying autumn leaves
convening for a timberland

the victor birthed it,
vast and boundless
charred and struggling
to fashion the mysterious
and singular

disembodied forested
liberation simply
a semblance of
of equals
parallel yet occasionally
labyrinthian paths

only ever one
the ONE that heals, nourishes and
marches on
and on
AND on...

Thursday, October 10, 2013

first steps- an ode to the women of the Philadelphia FDC

will you think of me
when you first step on the verdant, green earth again
yielding to her rich submersion
enriched by and on  terra firma
with your newly sweetened soul
as if the bees could
gather your nectar into honey

will you think of me
when you greet the starry night
an astral gaze at the clouds worshipping a crescent moon

will you think of me
basking under a blazing sun
allowing its warmth to kindle your inner flame

will you think of me
as you acknowledge the magic in the mist
or the music in the breeze
as you sit and notice the tears pricking your eye
because of your new connectivity

will you think of me
whence the river calls your name
and orates like a sanctuary
overflowing with promise
and curiosity for the next unfolding

will you think of me?
because nature has become your church

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

on being whimsical

i once offered you a pretend ice cream cone
what flavor do you prefer sir?
one scoop or two?
my, oh my, someone has a sweet tooth!!
all the flavors in the world
here for your choosing
behind the bars
where choice is limited
and oh so prized...
take your pick
let your imagination run wild
enjoy the cool, smooth, and creamy
before it melts in the sun, vanishing
before returning to your cell
be momentarily transported
back to an enchanted childhood
that existed in your favorite dream

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Just Call Me Teflon Girl

Just Call Me Teflon Girl

Insults hurled, barbs like arrows gaining speed
Far-flung language and under-handed jabs lobbed my way
Misfires? maybe...
Makes no matter- I am Teflon Girl

The criticisms and hurts are only a mirror if I'm holding one
They no longer represent my Truth
Only That which serves the Highest Good in Me sticks
The oft-reported shortcomings have nowhere to land
Slipping and sliding into oblivion
I am Teflon Girl

Sturdy like armor, protecting what is of value
Preserving and insulating like a chest-full of that stuff
My heart beats on

I am Teflon Girl

Monday, August 5, 2013

My first mixed-race party

It was a poetry slam:
children, young adults and me and Bob
gathered around the yard sharing a bite,
a laugh, a spoken word.

Relaxed, some new faces, a few slowly
becoming friends.
It wasn't until hours after the last
departed that I realized-
This was the first time
blacks and whites had mixed socially in
our home...first embarrassed then excited
as it dawned on me that  this could become
our new
We could actually open our home more often
because I've always enjoyed entertaining.
I liked that my children could see my graciousness and
generosity as genuine for these guests as for
our old friends and family that frequent S. Park Drive.

Seems kind of silly, but it feels like an important moment in
our lives....

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cause I can't change....even if I, wanted to...even if I tried. Badumbadumpadum!!

After a particularly mindful bike ride, one on which I was experiencing the birds chirping and the wind rustling as if for the first time, I sat by the river bed and got still.  In this space I sensed emotions rising up.  I let them flow and cried as I released the pent up desire for perfection. Why wasn't I a more enlightened being after all my hard work, all my attempts to change and grow and raise my consciousness?? After all, I practice yoga most days, have a dedicated meditation practice and read inspirational and mindfulness based essays and poetry. After this self-flagellation, I "heard" in my spirit the song's lyrics return to me. "Cause I can't change...even if I, wanted to...even if I tried".
The words had been in the background of my mind during the bike ride and now they were back again but to teach my something very important.

This message from somewhere in and yet beyond me, was saying I was getting it all wrong if I thought I had to work at change.  God is the only one that can actually effect lasting change in us or else the ego would take the credit! Chuckling at this I continued this mixture of emotions riding the waves of laughter and then tears of relief and deep gratitude.  I could actually let go of the need to be a better me...whew! This is FREAKIN HUGE!!!   My highest self wanted me to know that I could and would be used right now in the midst of my imperfect nature...all I had to do was show up, be willing.  And I had thought that when I better resembled Mother Theresa, the Uni-verse would begin using me in more meaningful ways.  Again, WRONG!

I returned the next Tuesday to teach my weekly meditation class at a local prison and was excited to share this good news.  God wants to use YOU-- right here, right now to spread the message of unconditional love and acceptance.  Our willingness to serve is what will change us in all the important, tranformational ways and it will be painless. Our willingness to commit to the mindfulness practices works the magic because presence cannot be easily defined. According to Father Richard Rohr ' Presence can only be experienced.....True presence to someone or something allows them or it to change me and influence me—before I try to change them or it! Beginner’s mind is pure presence to each moment before I label it, critique it, categorize it, exclude it, or judge it.'

Cue the music, maestro! Love me the genius that is Macklemore.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

shrinking me

you'd have me small, puny even
as if you'd been photoshopped in for me
thinking this enlarges you
removing me from the picture
my confidence somehow
threatens your ability
to know your true magnitude

but there's no use comparing
my shrinking does not serve the uni-verse
my expansion will continue regardless
of your minimizing
i've plugged in

you now must seek out the biggest version of you
stripping away the belief
that little you, is all that you are
the aperture is set
the light floods in a flash

the vastness of your power lies within
within the silent and dark corners
of your soul
only there will you unfurl
only there
can you connect
to the One
responsible for developing your own greatness

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Rumi-esque poem

when a tear pricks your eye
because you hear the rocks calling
out your name,
you recognize
all is God
God is all
there is God
and the need for God
nothing else

Monday, April 22, 2013

fraught with peacefulness

a watershed of tears
for no reason and every reason imaginable
clarity and confusion share gray matter space
while the body sways and rocks
through the cerulean gloom
tempted to dance above the rising pain
arms raised
releasing  the world's anguish
one angry fist and one praise hand at a time

the heart speaks: patience...
slowly, imperceptibly at first
Resplendent Light and space arise
lifting the fog of mourn
resurfacing as a pulsing, enlivened hope

immobility and helplessness
spiral into backbone
erect and courageous
boldly proclaiming

IT as all Bliss

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Deep calls unto Deep

found peace on my board
that sacred space meant to carry both ego and spirit
surfing a life well-lived
just might prove that our humanity is not
the opposite of our divinity but the manifestation of it!

sensing we all might just be royalty after-all
confident in my mission
in my uniqueness
and yours
like a drop of water in the ocean
I am at once an individual
and yet complete and integrated with the whole

I am one with the rolling deep
because deep calls unto deep you know
and the mystery that is profoundly curling in on itself is
undulating out a rhythm in a cadence called Life

surrender to it
and savor
the ultimate in revelatory freedom

Thursday, March 21, 2013

a prisoner's gift

my perspective's changed
don't complain much anymore
what's there to say-
the weather stinks, i have a cold,
my cell phone's dead?
such absurdity!!

the trees' immense reflection in the river
robins chirping
the soft fur of my golden
laughter and eating out
libraries and yoga class
family and friends and comfy beds

the stuff that makes a life

Matthew 25:36 
I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me. Then the righteous will answer him, Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 

i share tools, a simple task
you share all...

Thankfully Luke 6 tells us:
For with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you

Monday, February 25, 2013

Moonbeam repair

broke my own barely-beating heart
went un- noticed
let alone fatal

pain endured then absorbed, changing its shape
until it appeared- a floating disconnect

once full and impervious
two halves forming the whole
self-righteous and solid
closed to the light

suddenly cracked and imperfect, at the ready
for the outpouring of emotion
tumbling through tumult

at the ready for the laser-bright white beam
through half-slit eyes
travels through eternity
to pierce my chest
and fills the cracks like mortar
a healing, translucent balm
and now by osmosis
gives and receives
the blood-red agape love
worthy of the creator
of the moon and stars
and earth and sky

Friday, February 1, 2013

enormous mustard seed

lost and hopeless
in appearance only
impressions are deceiftful
fake countenance!!

your portion
your portion, like an inheritance
overflowing and plentiful
your ways, a mystery

to love
a  simple requirement
but not in my own strength
always yours
Jehovah Jireh--
the Lord who provides
i surrender- again and again
devoting myself to your promises
and your ways, a mystery

you desire each heart
not one is forgotten
i am humbled
by the enormity
the universal complexity
of bonding together
beyond space and time
with great momentum
yet simplicity... for even
me, your servant
your ways, a mystery

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Snowflake Christening

new day beckons
replete with  infinite rebirth
revealed in
alabaster, snow-capped branches
in a bright, sunlit sky

closing eyes
on a quest
to a raw beauty
that mars.
and human scars
recalling torment
and unveiled suffering...
on timber ascending skyward
a different snow-less day

close them to evict
the outside world
gaze inward!

an abandoned cradle
desolate and lifeless
a missing Christ Child
not yet resurrected

and yet,
fall afresh
kissing my face
in a christening
of sorts
immersed and washed clean

a smile emerging
as natural
and miraculous
as baby's arrival
into the naked NOW

Thursday, January 17, 2013

anorexic ego

starve it
weakened, it will whither
cadaverous and gaunt
it hangs around desperate for a scrap
deprived and depressed
demolished into near nothingness

or not

nourished by compassion
fed a tidbit (or a bowl-full) of empathy
space to breathe, a loosening of the belt
ego's ways soften and gracefully recompose
lithesome from sustenance
in search of the last supper
to be in communion with all that is
abundantly light

Monday, January 14, 2013

carve me- the ugly beauty

and i asked Him - cut out the ugly
use a surgeon's precision
remove the selfish, small, petty of me
do not be concerned, it must be done
be swift!!

and He replied, I refuse;
you cannot withstand such harshness
it would bring certain death
I must be gentle and with a delicacy
reserved for my dear ones, I will chip away
the marble
revealing the beauty within

Monday, January 7, 2013

What does it mean that Jesus died for my sins?

I've been pondering the message of the cross lately.  I love some of the motivations Fr. Richard Rohr expresses regarding Jesus death representing the killing of the divisions between peoples of the day.  Galatians 3:28 says 'There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.'  Rohr says He came to destroy the "my group versus your group thinking".  He came to create one new humanity (Ephesians). Doesn't that sound fabulous?  and impossible?

I have started to feel that the concept of Jesus dying for my sins means for me that I do not have to work so hard at eliminating my selfish ego all the while expanding my consciousness; that Him being fully human and fully God blurs the line for us too.  There is such freedom in this grace that's been given.  I can wake up and know that God has control and I can surrender the effort, finding ease.  Once again, I can create space between the one thinking the "less than" thoughts and the ONE watching, not judging.  One of the best ways for me to tune in to my inner divinity is through my yoga and meditation practice- aligning my personality with my soul's purpose.

Jesus may have died so that we don't have to kill off our egos, hating every part of us that isn't creative, inspiring, loving, forgiving, and perfect. Maybe the entire world isn't ready to embrace this new humanity as one, loving, whole, equal species but I am ready to embrace my being that way. We  have God's spirit within each and every one of us and an ego.  Can we make peace between the two, allowing them the space to  co-exist because  Jesus' life tells us that our humanity is not the opposite of our divinity, it  is the manifestation of it!!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

The epiphany station

why all the static
frenzy and commotion
yours are the hands, feet and heart

this path inclusive of all life's lessons
awareness holds the key to learn in this school
you are his body
make the connection
yours are the hands, feet and heart

attune your personality
to the smooth sounds of your soul station
to hear the lovely melody ripple forth
yours are the hands, feet and heart

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Unlikely partner

primal connection magnetized
drawn together in the natural
as energetic symbiosis
inseparable in a painful, blooming knot
of emotion
My Beloved's humor identified
in secrets revealed
a  beautiful, hidden agenda:
the unveiling of the Passiflora