Icing That Trigger Finger

“Pistol grip pump on my lap at all times…” ~ Rage Against The Machine

If you tell a toddler, “Don’t slam the door,

their only option is to follow the command.

Do, first, to figure out how to undo.

Of course, their primary obedience

elicits annoyance and frustration on both

sides. How much clearer to say,

Please close the door gently!

Ah, the life lessons a toddler offers.

Today, I shared an insight

from my own healing to my family

of origin, and sneers and jeers

ensued — an invitation to descend

into the nightmare of my childhood

where black was declared white

and every step was perilous.

I refused to go there.

Instead very clearly said, “Then don’t

investigate this technique!”

since I had inadvertently triggered

a two-year-old child parading about

in an adult’s body. Of course, establishing

a boundary is only step one.

I sat and contemplated the tight

feeling of grief in my lungs,

such a familiar pain that I’ve dragged

from the past, so heavy that it blocks

my ability to be here now.

Breathing in to the spaciousness

that is deep within even the most

contracted places of myself,

loving the trigger and the response

and this quiet place where I can observe

the intricate dance of my aliveness,

and honor my own masquerade.

Inspired by the Ragtag Daily Prompt: Nightmare

 

Songs of Praise

I arrive in every second,

in order to laugh and cry…

the rhythm of my heart

is the birth and death of all that are alive.

My joy is like spring

so warm it makes flowers bloom

in my hands.

My pain is like a river

of tears so full it fills up

all the four oceans…

I arrive in every second.

~ from Please Call Me By My True Names ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

As I run beside this two-year-old boy

barefoot and laughing my heart

opens wide, and my own inner

two-year-old peeps out, shy and worried

she’ll do something wrong.

She watches this child who wails 

passionately when I take off his dirty

airplane shirt, only stopping

when he feels his anguish

acknowledged by this deep presence

I bring to him.  We are healing every

two year old, those stuck in the frightful

past, those here right now,

and all the ones to come.  Can you feel

the stirrings of your own heart, no longer

separated by time or space

or any belief of our separation?

My imagination sparks

this innovative human

unrestricted by any need for civilization.

Let his joy welcome every being:

the charmed trash collector, the smiling

gardener waving from a riding

lawn mower, the wagging dogs,

honking geese and rumbling aircraft.

We arrive in this very second

honoring our wildfire passions

united at last on this garden walk,

trampling through the fragrant

flowers to greet every bug

with an exuberant, 

heartfelt, “Hi!”

Inspired by the Rag Tag Prompt: Imagination

(This video of Mirabai Ceiba sets Thich Nhat Hanh’s lyrics to beautiful music.)

 

Inadvertent Seamstress

“The unexamined life is not worth living.” — Socrates

 

I am examining the very fabric of my life

with the help of an exuberant toddler

and recalcitrant octogenarians.

They each give me this gift

through the sharing of DNA

an ancestral thread that weaves

the connections between us,

allows me to assume the posture

of the present as the past unwinds

and the future races before me.

I know this simultaneous blessing

is not bestowed on many in

our fractured crazy-quilt lives.

So often, life has thrust me

into the thick of it, with little time

to catch my breath, let alone

mindfully watch it flow

in and out,

open windows when I cough,

honor a sneeze, that powerful signal.

Instead, I’ve been caught in a windstorm,

blowing past oases

that I only recognize in hindsight.

I have pieced together my life

carelessly, accumulating possessions

that demand more and more care

as the people in my life slip by.

Now, in this precious moment

witnessing the display of patchwork quilts

warming the elders and

swaddling the newly arrived,

I piece together my own patterns,

adjusting the ones I’ve sewn in haste,

taking apart seams painstakingly,

and with a needle threaded

lovingly, begin

to embroider anew.

Inspired by The Daily Word Prompt: fabric