Ghostwriting

 

The longings that a person feels when alive, which remain fixed in his heart, come to mind at the moment of death. ~ Jnaneshwar in Graceful Exits, How Great Beings Die 

Predawn cacophony 

struggles win this time.

In the dark, I’m grudgingly

dressed, writing through 

a thunderstorm and grumbling

intestines. So tired.

I’ve been pondering

how to die well;

I still feel her reaching out

on her frantic

deathbed, like a vicious swipe

from a bear’s claws — 

years of focused hatred

led her right to me, and finally

she made an impact.

 Oh, how my head aches.

Listen to this belly grouching.

I’m present for all of this agony,

chaotic crumbling of an

invisible ancestral pattern, 

bringing it to the light.

Even though my candle today

can barely pierce this murky 

air and the flame

is flickering, I’m holding it up.

I’m holding it high to summon

dark spirits. Show yourselves.

Dance to these

drums you’ve been beating

in me.  Even as the rising

sun reaches through the thick

cloud cover, I’m straining

to hear your muffled voices.

**

So grateful for all of the dark words today: GhostAgony, Grudging, Cacophony, Summon

reconsidering reality

Victims and perpetrators at times share, at a deep soul level, the experience of their shared horror, and subsequent generations may incorporate one or both aspects of that experience. ~ Francesca Mason Boring

A constellation….perspective…can find solutions to the unknown aspects that are holding the problem in place. ~ Diane Hetherington and Elizabeth Hostetler

She is decolonizing reality, brave

heart and I worry, cautious — is my poem itself

appropriation?  You see, I drag

along all of my family trauma

accompanied by my ancestors

white on white

trudging across this societal foundation

of greed.  It reaches far back

with glorified pedigrees, the kind that gloss

over humane treatment.  Freedom dispensed

as long as the state is secured

by spying and infiltrating, peremptory

strikes to protect the bottom line.

 

When I was 13, scornful of my parents’

ill-formed beliefs, searching for truth,

maybe I could have thrown off the shackles

of believing the system is a good one.

Closing the pages of the history that

erased the atrocities, ceasing to

celebrate the discovery of millions

of people alive and well before

being claimed.  But the openings

in those days were LSD trips and the rest

of the journey beyond that gate

lost in grateful dances

with psychedelic deadheads.

 

Still colonized, chanting old lyrics

preformed structures of thought

to preserve the coffers of the very rich

and keep the rest of us enslaved.

And yet, here she is, singing

in fragments and tweets, despite

the brutal erasure of her culture,

her language, her spirit guides.

And I am a grandmother, living

on the unmarked bones of her people

and her guides bring their medicine

daily, singing and hooting and tweeting

and who else is listening?  The dead

 

decolonizing reality, She is

brave and i am finally ready

to erase my claims and reveal

it’s not i did this, i am doing

this journey is our

Reality, she is decoloniZing

you are appRopriately

afraid.  sing bravely, deer heart

Inspired by: Spying, Dispense, Freedom, Humane, Handle

As We Enter Deep Places

So, at a level far below that of language, the feeling meaning of the story goes inside you, into a very deep, dreaming place.  Into the place where your deepest feelings reside.  And there it changes who you are, just as all good stories do. ~ Stephen Buhner, Plant Intelligence

In polite conversation, it’s just not done

to say, “She hated me,” and so I laugh,

as if the emotion has no substance.

Expecting some bland reply, if any —

ah, it’s an enigma

that you feel so blue.

Feel better now.  Is it only

natural to sidestep these deep 

openings? But you love me

and you ask me to embrace

my grief and pain and pure pissed-off

chagrin at her hostility.

You pull me out into the garden

redolent with peppermint and fresh-cut grass

gifts from the breeze

over the spring-fed pond.

The coolness heralding the turning

toward the fall, 

when all things appear 

to die after a blaze of vivid

protest or celebration.

Your hand in mine, my emotions

free to move as we pace

into the unknown places

this moment has revealed.

 

Inspired by: Enigma, SubstanceBlue, Redolent, Natural

Distracted by Niggling Lies

As I write, highly civilized human beings are flying overhead, trying to kill me. ~ George Orwell

I find zest in the early hours

when my narrow mind — having opened

in darkness, is soothed into spaciousness

by dawning meditation.  Insights diving

like swallows gathering insects

to feed demanding nestlings, rich

rewarding as if everyone has left

intricate dreams airing in plain sight

for me to marvel over.

Midmorning is humbled 

by atrocity, the space painted over

deliberately by news reports

parroting subtle lies with so much

gloss and poise — Orwellian doublespeak:

War is peace.  Freedom is slavery.

But love is easy.  It requires

no frames, no jockeying for position,

no branding.  If we can only sit here

in silence — shhh.  Let go

of our stories, the history we’ve

memorized, the right

and the wrong of each other.

Turn off these incessant screens.

Let’s leave the safety

of the porch and walk

barefoot in the grass

and simply breathe.

 

Inspired by: Zest, Love, Atrocity, and Porch

Look Into The Souls

The family is the nucleus of civilization. ~ Will Durant

Who is willing to face this movement?  Who dares to take this path?  I look around and I know myself moved by another power. How are you?  Did you come along with us on the path to success?  Together with many, to the right and to the left of you, and behind you?  And some who walk ahead? ~ Bert Hellinger

The very first time is always

frightening.  Burping and nauseous,

headaches and back spasms,

coughing, breathless: the ancestors

all contact you. A few are jumping in,

waving your hand, choose me!

While others are bowing your

head in shame and silence, covering you

with a shawl in this frigid air

suddenly calling forth goosebumps.

You’ve stepped into the room;

there’s no going back,

and the changes you expect

are miniscule compared to the heart-

wrenching nutcracker experience

that awaits you.  This is a family

constellation, and whether it is yours

or you are standing as a representative,

the issues raised are completely

personal.  They touch you

sometimes like nails screeching 

a chalkboard, or a Tibetan singing

bowl allowed to resonate for long

minutes, dropping deeper

into your cells as you ring

along.  You could feel hands

choking the life out of you.

You may collapse in fear.

Tears or wails or the darkest

silence, all available here.

And embrace it wholeheartedly

but be warned: this is not 

a magic remedy.

The insights here illuminate

the steps you must take

toward your own healing,

sloughing through the muck,

sweat dripping down your face

to mingle with your tears.

It’s never easy, it’s always essential

hard work, but now you know

your ancestors have your back,

gleeful and proud, giving you a push

and cheering you on

past the obstacles that held them

like fossils preserved in sticky resin.

And you walk toward your progeny

with all your amber jewelry a shining

inheritance, the patterns you’ve

uncovered highly polished now

in your daily practice.

Inspired by: Practice, Contact, constellation, expect, nucleus

The Way Is Deep

The increase in complexity includes the generation of millions upon millions of complex forms of life, all with complex behaviors, all tied together through webs of connection and relationship.  All an irremovable part of the web of life.  All of them a part of Gaia, all of them Gaia in one form or another. ~ Stephen Buhner

The healing path can seem torturous

a labyrinth of tree

tunnels with no higher perspective.

My brother says there is no god as his port

is filled with chemo.  He has renounced

religious dogma and its political control.

He scoffs at faith in magic.

I wanted to write a novel

about the spiritual poverty

inherent in my own debilitating illness.

Raise a commotion

about the cause of inflammation.

Add more fuel — such valuable

wood, hand-collected, to the very fire

I wish to comprehend.

The wildfire that swept through

and burned every bit of me.

Going deep into the woods

trudging sometimes alarmed

by the roots that trip, 

the looming shadows, deep

with danger.  For so long, I have

watched the skies, rejoicing

in sun-dappled touches,

light, fleeting.

Seeking illumination as the way out

of here.  Here in the primeval 

forest of fragile beginnings

in the rotting decomposition

the place which the lightseekers

avoid.  I let go of these precious 

bodies I’ve been dragging.  Gaia has been

waiting for me, in me,

where all the adjustments I seek

can be woven.  My colors,

my yarn, my patterns.

Only I can create space to feel

these intricate threads which stretch

vibrating between us in a harmony

I must simply trust 

and allow to unfold.

My essential being opens

in this presence huge

beyond my comprehension. 

Available perhaps only through

transmission.  Every word dripping

in a poem of power

to land its healing vibes

directly into your heart.

 

Inspired by: Debilitate, Commotion, Novel, Poverty

Yes, and…

“We don’t need to change it.  We need to say ‘yes’ to what is.” ~ Nicholas Janni

“Enter the mystery and grace of the present moment.” ~ Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, From Age-ing to Sage-ing

This fly zings past my ear to binoculars

then sunglasses so I must ask:

what is in front of me,

how do I see,

can I witness

from not-knowing?  Too often

I miss the subtle responses

to my questions, because I am utterly

distracted by my own beliefs.

I am so tempted to swat

this pesky bug.  I don’t have time

for this.  And yet, I have learned

that when I ignore the tiny clues,

they grow larger, more demanding,

even ominous.  So this insignificant insect

crawling straight across the thin

blue line of the napkin is a signal

to wake up, receive this

message personally tailored

by the responsive universe who listened

to me praying just half an hour ago.

Can I perceive this 

differently?  Is there a fresh way

to be right now?  The fly stills

and what I had perceived as

cacophony emerges in a non-compete

composition:  the rhythm of the drumlike

tymbals vibrating from cicadas.

The goldfinches’ liquid twittering

and the distant hawk’s kree.

Large truck lumbers by,

windchimes select “A” and “G”.

Poplar leaves rustle

the cool breeze on my skin.

Last night’s rain lingering in the

pleasant petrichor and the subtle

perfume of the Asiatic lilies next door.

Chittering, whistling from the bushes. 

The shivering and waving ferns.

I am rooted in this earth, my dark heart

rich and jewel-like as I open the space

to be with you now, witnessing

all that has not been felt.

Here, finally, to fully face this moment.

 

Inspired by Zing, Compete, and Distract