My Poetry

The first thing to understand about my poetry 
is that it comes to you from outside you, 
in my  books or in my words, 
but that for it to live, 
something from within you must come to it 
and meet it 
and complete it. 

Your response with your own mind 
and body 
and memory 
and emotions 
gives my poetry its ability to work some magic; 
if you give to it, 
it will give to you, 
and give plenty.

The sun is new every day 
and the sun of my poetry is new every day, too, 
because it is seen in different ways 
by different people 
who have lived under it, 
lived with it, 
and responded to it. 

Their lives are different from yours, 
but by means of what my poetry may bring to the fact of the sun,
 — everybody’s sun; yours, too — 
you can come into possession of many suns: 
as many as men and women have ever been able to imagine. 

I hope that my poetry makes possible 
your deepest kind of personal possession of the world.

The beginning of your encounter with my poetry 
should be simple. 
It bypasses classrooms,
and libraries, 
and strives to go straight to the things 
that make your own existence exist: 
to your body and nerves and blood and muscles. 

With my poetry, find your own way
 — a secret way that maybe you don’t know yet — 
to open yourself as wide as you can 
and as deep as you can 
to the moment, 
the now of your own existence
and the endless mystery of it, 
and perhaps at the same time 
to one other thing that is not you, 
but is out there: 
a handful of soil is a good place to start. 

For me, almost anything put poetically 
is more memorable than the same thing in prose. 
Why this is, I don't know,
though the answer is surely rooted 
far down in the biology 
by means of which we exist; 
in the circulation of the blood 
that goes forth from the heart and comes back, 
and in the repetition of breathing.

I hope
the more your encounter with my poetry deepens, 
the more your experience of your own life deepens,
 and you begin to see things by means of words, 
and words by means of things.

I think
you will come to understand the world 
as it interacts with words, 
and as it can be re-created by words, 
in rhythms and by images.

My experience is that this condition 
is one charged with vital possibilities. 
You might pick up meaning more quickly
 and you will create meaning, too, 
for yourself and others.

Connections between things 
may exist for you in ways that they never did before. 
They will shine with unexpectedness, 
if you go toward them
on your own path. 

You will know this is happening 
the first time you say, 
of something you might not have noticed before, 

Many have gifted me
with their
after immersion in my poetry.

Separation is not Security

My primary consciousness knows reality
rather than ideas about it,
does not know the future.
It lives completely in the present,
and perceives nothing more than what is at this moment.

My mind, however,
looks at that part of present experience called memory,
and by studying it is able to make predictions.
These predictions are, relatively, so accurate and reliable
that the future assumes a high degree of reality,
so high that the present loses its value for me.

But the future is still not here,
and cannot become a part of experienced reality
until it is present.

Since what I know of the future
is made up of purely abstract and logical elements,
inferences, guesses, deductions,
it cannot be eaten, felt, smelled, seen, heard, or otherwise enjoyed.

To pursue it was to pursue a constantly retreating phantom,
and the faster I chased it,
the faster it ran ahead.

This is why hardly anyone enjoys what he has,
and is forever seeking more and more.
Happiness, then, consists, not of solid and substantial realities,
but of such abstract and superficial things
as promises, hopes, and assurances.

My self-conscious mind is a disorder,
and manifests itself in the acute feeling of separation
between me and my experiences.

I can only find happiness
when my consciousness is doing what it is designed for:
not writhing and whirling to get out of present experience,
but being effortlessly aware of it.

How I spend my days is, of course,
how I spend my life.

I stopped measuring my days by accomplishments
and started experiencing them by my degree of Presence.

The concept of Presence is rooted in Eastern notions of mindfulness,
the ability to go through life with crystalline awareness
fully inhabiting our experiences.

The root of frustration and daily anxiety
was my tendency to live for the future,
which is an abstraction.

When I needed the assurance of a happy future
to enjoy the present moment,
my happiness was doomed.
I never received such assurance.

The best predictions were always matters of probability
rather than certainty,
and to the best of my knowledge
every one of us is going to die.

When I could not live happily
without an assured future,
I was certainly not adapted
to living in a finite world where,
despite the best plans,
accidents happen,
and where death comes at the end.

What kept me from happiness,
was my inability to fully inhabit the present.

There was a contradiction in wanting to be perfectly secure
in a universe whose very nature is momentariness and fluidity.
But the contradiction was a little deeper
than the mere conflict between my desire for security
and the fact of change.

When I wanted to be secure,
that is, protected from the flux of life,
I was wanting to be separate from life.

Yet it is this very sense of separateness
which made me feel insecure.

To be secure means to isolate and fortify myself,
but it is the very feeling of being isolated
which made me feel lonely and afraid.
In other words, the more security I got,
the more I needed.

My desire for security
and the feeling of insecurity were the same thing.
To hold my breath is to lose my breath.

The real reason why human life can be so utterly exasperating and frustrating
was not because there are facts called death, pain, fear, or hunger.
The madness of the thing was that when such facts were present,
I circled, buzzed, writhed, and whirled,
trying to get out of the experience.

I tried to protect myself from life
by splitting in two.
My sanity, wholeness, and integration came
with the realization that I am not divided,
that I and my present experience are one,
and that no separate I or mind can be found.

To understand music, I must listen to it.
As long as I am thinking,
“I am listening to this music,”
I am not listening.

Treasure Within

We must have the courage
to bring forth the treasures
that are hidden within us.

Something wonderful is sheltered inside.
We are all walking repositories
of buried treasure.

One of the oldest and most generous tricks
the universe plays on us human beings,
both for its own amusement and for ours
is burying strange jewels deep within us all
and standing back to see if we can find them.

The hunt to uncover those jewels
is living Creatively.

The courage to go on that hunt
is what separates a mundane existence
from an enchanted one.

We must risk delight,
having the stubbornness to accept our gladness
in the ruthless furnace of this world,
living in a state of uninterrupted marvel.

We must be Creative,
recognizing and appreciating the creativity in fixing a meal,
playing games with a child,
imagining a garden.

Without Creativity,
we will never be able to realize our own capacities.

Without Creativity,
we will never know the world as richly
as it longs to be known.

Without Creativity,
our lives remain small,
far smaller than we want our their lives to be.

Fear of being Creative
is a desolate boneyard
where our dreams rot.

While the paths and outcomes of creative living
will vary wildly from person to person,
a creative life is an amplified life.

It’s a bigger life,
a happier life,
an expanded life,
and a hell of a lot more interesting life.

Continually and stubbornly bringing forth the jewels
that are hidden within
is a fine art, in and of itself.

Only when we are Creative,
and at our most playful,
can Divinity finally get serious with us.

Who I Am

For me, 
the labyrinth is 
a great reminder of who I am
and a blueprint of my human experience. 

Just like the labyrinth, 
I have a sacred center,
still, unwavering, peaceful, connected. 

I also have the chaotic qualities 
of twists and turns that cause me to feel lost, 
even though I am not. 

My sacred center is surrounded 
by my love drama, 
relationship drama, 
health drama, etc., 
and I get so caught up in the ego-dance 
that I forget (or fall asleep) 
to the memory of my true essence
my sacred center,
our sacred center.

When I recognize the true essence of my BEING, 

I also become adept at recognizing 
that which is not me.

When Michelangelo was asked 
how he managed to carve the statue of David out of a huge block of marble, 
he explained that he simply visualized David 
and then carved away everything that was not David.

Getting to know myself as divine spirit

having a human experience 
allows me the opportunity to“carve away” 
everything that does not truly belong to me, 
and that which doesn’t truly serve others.

How do I get to know the authentic aspect of who I am? 

I simply begin to pay attention 
to the difference between who I really am 
and who I pretend to be. 

I notice my self-talk. 
I notice what I say to myself 
and to others, 
as well as how I say it. 

I notice the blessings and gifts 
that are bestowed upon me daily. 
I notice my talents and creative abilities. 
I notice my feelings. 

I Sit in silence and simply listen. 
I Invite my true essence 
to come forward 
and create the space for It to do so. 

The results pleasantly surprised me.

But, What If?

What Ifs.

Most of the time,
What Ifs
never happen,
Fear is a strong emotion
detracting from
the Joy
available to me
Right NOW.

One sign of
True Inner Peace
and my living in the Now
is my willingness
to act
all the possible negative
What ifs
resident in
and only in
the future,
which does not exist.

On occasion,
I fail to do something
I fear possible
unintended negative consequences.

It's a perfect example
of me not living in
the precious present moment,
instead being governed
by possible future

Next Life

that focus on a
Next Life
and presumed rewards
that would be earned
by compliance to some set of
man-made rules, doctrines, and dogmas
are sinful.

Next-Life focused religions
end up
removing people's responsibilities
for making the most out of
The Gift of Life, as it is,
relying on a Creator
to fix the problems
created by people's lack of
focus and responsibility
for Creation Now.

Ignoring Jesus' revelation that
The Kingdom of God is at Hand,
those instead focused on a next life
trade the great Joy
of the Precious Present Moment
in the hope
of some future reward
in a next life.

Sad and Sinful

Everything is SACRED

This cannot be
a mundane universe
in which nothing is Sacred
because there is no God,
one in which
some things are holy, of God,
and others just matter.

It is, rather,
a universe that is fully Sacred,
pregnant with meaning
immanent with divinity,
in which
order, organization, and beauty
arise spontaneously,
neither imposed from above by a designer,
nor projected from within by observers,
A Universe, One with God.

The marvelous complexity
and beauty of nature
are not consolation prizes
for lack of the Sacred,
but clear evidence
that the universe is Sacred.