Silent Emptiness

Last night I fell in a hole
It just got deeper and deeper
There was no way out
And suddenly I was faced with a choice

Either keep on struggling
Or surrender the fight
What a dilemma…

If I struggled on
It would be pointless
But at least there was hope
Even if it was illusory
There was some reason to keep going
However desperate

If I surrendered maybe it was resignation
I would have to stop running
And face the horror
The pain, the sorrow, the truth
Who would I be if I gave up completely?
I would be entirely alone

Realizing the futility of struggling
I surrendered the fighter to the darkness
Oh did I fall!
As though into eternity
Seeing the ground disappear as I dropped
Deeper and deeper
I left myself behind
I left everything known
Somewhere up above

And I came upon emptiness
A profound silence overwhelmed me
And in that empty silence
There was something new and different
A presence of unconditional acceptance
That filled everything, including me
It seemed to touch the very fibers of me
And I came to know myself as that
Silent emptiness

By and by, the hole, the struggle
The fear, the doubt and confusion
Dissolved

I returned to the world
Subtly, profoundly, quietly changed
Filled with gratitude and awe
For all I do not know.

The Razor’s Edge

To walk through
The valley of darkness
With awareness
Placing one foot
Softly after the other
In tenderness and resolve
Holding fear lightly
Allowing the waves of emotion
To rise and fall
This is the razor’s edge

It is called the razor’s edge
Because it cuts through duality.

Let’s Build a Fire

Come my friend
Let us build a fire
Far away from everyone
In the wild somewhere
Somewhere we cannot be found
You can bring it all
Your sorrow, fear and pain
All that pent up anger
All the times you have turned away
And bitten your tongue
All the heartbreak and heartache
The shame and the guilt
Even the hope, the prayers and the blind faith

You can bring it all
And we can burn it
All night long
And watch it all turn to flickering ash
Rising up to the stars
Disappearing into the void

And as dawn arrives
We can sing a sweet song
Of love’s tender freedom
As we make our way
Back to the hubbub of the market place
There may even be
A lightness in our step
And a crafty smile
Upon our lips

They will be curious
And ask why we smell
Of woodsmoke
But I will not share our secret with them.

Into the Unknown

Don’t try and catch me
When I fall
I’m falling by choice
But you might get hurt when you land,’ you said
Don’t worry, I replied, there is no ground
This falling is without end
Falling itself is the only ground

Choosing the unknown
Turning away from mind’s constant need to know
Mind’s constant reassurance
And our addiction to certainty
Sends us into a tail spin
Even a panic

What happens if I let go completely!’ you scream,
Will I die?’ you beg

Try it and find out
Give up your knowledge for a moment
Turn away from your certainty
Fall into doubt
But you must do it fully
Fall into the unknown, keep your hands by your side,
And don’t clutch to anything
If you land somewhere
Some ledge of certainty
You have probably grasped at some false hope
Jump again!

There is no ground friend
And the unknown is your liberation
But on the way down
Your mind’s tyrannous nature
Will beg and scream and cry and threaten
And that’s where your work is
Right there on the ragged edge
As you fall
It’s a beautiful death.

The Song of Humanity

There is only one true poem
It tells the story
Of innocence lost
Abandoned to shame
Blame and guilt

It speaks of the human journey
In the wilderness
Lost in drama
And righteousness
Desperate for meaning

It is an enduring and heart breaking tale
Of unimaginable suffering
Of man against man
Man against woman
True nature forgotten
A tale of greed and avarice
Of idols and false gods
Of confusion and chaos

Ah! But here is the thing
This great poem
Speaks to each of us
For this is the poem
Of you and me

The innocence lost is yours and mine
Can we find it again?

The struggle in the wilderness
Lost in drama
Desperate for meaning
Is our struggle
Can we find the light of love in this darkness?

Each of us carries the song of humanity
Within us
Each one of us
Is a reflection of the whole
And when one of us
Finds the light within the darkness
So a little part of everyone else lights up
For everything is contained within everything else

And that is why I keep my light burning.

Photo by Evgeni Tcherkasski on Unsplash

Born for Simple Joy

You can only
Cover over the cracks
For so long
Before what is hidden
Behind those cracks
Starts seeping through
And breaking into
Any intimate or vulnerable
Part of your life.

The cover over the cracks
Was only there as a temporary measure
A form of protection
Necessary at the time
But now become an old and tired habit
With no purpose left
And thus it torments you
To let it go

Uncover the cracks
And let the light shine in
And out

We must carry our defensive strategies
Only as long as absolutely necessary
But the wise one
Knows when this time is
And will choose, at some point,
To put down his, or her, arms
And meet the rest of life
With open hands

The alternative is life as a prisoner
Held captive in a bar-less jail

Come, throw off your old cloak of fears
And run free into the fields of joy
Jump, shake, scream and howl
Let it all go in a great dance of abandon
You will find this freedom
Has been inside you all the time
Waiting for the right moment
To reveal itself.

You were born for the simple joy of freedom
Don’t settle for anything less.

Photo by Ahmad Odeh on Unsplash