Lord of my heart

when i threw myself headlong & heartshort into the rowdy suffering of the world,
You gave that to me, You allowed me the vividly intense experience i sought.
thank You, Shiva. i learned to endure & to value the kindnesses that kindled my heart.

when i wrapped myself deeply in my personal sorrows, You gave that to me as well.
Your permissions were generous. my greed was strong & omnivorous & relentless.
thank You, Shiva, for allowing me the deepening darkness that urged me to seek the light.

when i called out to You in love & longing, You came to me & held me to Your heart.
You remained with me as i meandered the obscure paths & the hard brightly paved ways.
You turned my life around when You transported me in my car to a different road
than the one i had set out upon. You wonder-bombed me, awed me silent, stunned & still.

You got my attention, enraptured me, woke me up & laid a new path before me.
on this new path we walk together & You teach me, remind me of what i forgot.
You comfort me in the midst of discomfort. You instruct me as guide & companion.

Shiva, for the time of intimacy to come i had to be stripped of my armor,
my shiny conclusions & competence, & brought to the knees of my humility.
it is here that i surrender my love to You & open to Your love beyond words.

so it is that You place me here in Your service within the crucible of Your love.
thank You, Shiva. without You all is hollow, yet dense enough to leave bruises behind.
with You Life is rich & promising like an april sunrise on a sentinel hill
in the pure realm of the devoted heart. i am Yours, Shiva. You are Lord of my heart.

no matter what the outcome

You cannot enter me in Your full potency
for blood & bone are too dense to hold the fullness
& intensity of Your vast power & light.
yet i do sincerely invite You nonetheless.
whether i live or am altogether destroyed
is an empty thought from an old collective dream.
i awaken now. i hear Your resounding call
& seek with all my heart to follow it to You.
no matter what the outcome may be, i am Yours.

touch me now

You meet me formlessly as i reach to You inwardly,
shedding the dense outer form, progressively dropping
identifiers until only beingness remains.
i know You in this world by Your energy signature
absorbed in our formless unions, which continue to bless.

You touch me now as i, in my elderhood, freely yield
myself to You who have blessed this life inexplicably,
enduringly, persistently, for i am slow to wake.
You have remained with me throughout my ignorance, Shiva.
You are the one constant in all this shifting flow of life.
i embrace You in deep devotion & dedication.
absolve me of my ignorance, enfold me in Your love.
You meet me formlessly as i reach to You inwardly.

this burning moment

as i write these words to You on paper, Shiva, i am
inviting You to be near me, to touch me with Your grace,
with Your compassionate way of revealing ageless truths
as if they had grown & blossomed deep within heart & mind
& only now could reveal their shining fragrant presence.

as i write these words to You on paper, Shiva, i find
myself feeling as if i sit by a wood-burning stove
enjoying the heat as wood is sacrificed to the fire.
we all burn with this indescribable divine flame.
it consumes our errors, making ashes of our mistakes.

as i write these words to You on paper, Shiva, i am
asking You to come so close that i lose myself in You,
so close that the meaning of the words "You" & "i" dissolves.
there is no more writing, no more words, no "i" & no "You"--
only now exists, only life, just this burning moment.

love’s nature

i am foolish to speak of You for what can words say of You?
i long to commune soul to soul as we did when You first came
to me years ago. You ignited the flame of love, made it burn.
it has been a beacon throughou the storms & clashes of life.
You marked me for Yourself & i also have vowed my service
from a deep well of recognition & heartfelt commitment.
without You, i am a shadow falling flat upon dark earth.
with You, i am sky, galaxies, dimensions beyond telling.
i am foolish to speak of You, yet i do this very thing!
it is love's nature to be the profoundest of contagions!

like a great bird

i am like a great bird spreading wide wings open full,
swiftly lifting up into the eager energy
of the new morning sky, aiming at the brightest light.
like an arrow tunneling through the air to the sun
is the pull of my heart to the fire of Your presence.
there is no other for me, Shiva. my heart is Yours.

compelled by love, like a fragment of pure forged iron
to a magnet, i move toward that which calls to me.
i rush to respond & embrace my deep destiny.

it feels like coming home after a lengthy journey,
like losing who i thought i was, finding who i am.
as the old ties are tearing apart, falling away,
i rise like a great bird spreading wide wings open full,
like an arrow tunneling through the air to the sun.
there is no other for me, Shiva. my heart is Yours.

You want me

i don't know why You want me here.
i don't know if what i do is
what You actually want from me.

i only know that You want me,
for You branded that deep within
my innermost wordless true self.

hence all my actions are given
to You in hope that i offer
that which is needful as You call
on me now to act in the world.

i use what You give. You give it
to be applied on Your behalf.
in the end, at the completion,
i only return what is Yours.

that You want me, this i do know
& nothing else really matters.

i bow to You

i have been running after knowledge
all of my long inquisitive life.
how like You, Shiva, to come to me
through my heart in the unknowingness
& chaos of shattered strategies!
well played, Beloved, i bow to You!

now that You have plowed my ready field,
plant Your seeds of mantric blessing deep,
to grow in darkness & reach for light
with Your tender care along the way.

all my actions now refer to You.
You demonstrate that heart does rule head
& i bow to You in gratitude.
Well played, Beloved, i bow to You!

pandemic lll

this is a global culling event,
a time of physical alertness,
a time of challenge to compassion.
this is a time when the greater good
for the greatest number is questioned
& ignored by many who value
personal will above group service.

do You call me to You now, Shiva?
am i one of the expendable ones
in this intense global culling time?
i am old, an economic drain,
if the material world counts most.
my offered gifts are not tangible,
nor do they serve current social needs.
Shiva, i am glad You came to me
& i will freely return to You
whenever You call me to come back.

what a drama of the human heart
are these times of global suffering!
it is no doubt a good time to die,
thus i stand with You, at peace myself.
the body is all Yours anyway,
always has been & always will be.
i am content & ready to leave,
to return to You who are my source.
let be what is needful, use me well!
gratitude to You is what remains
& in this world, that is sufficient.

refuge

i'm sharing blessings through poetry, art, stories.
i'm giving all that to You, Shiva, who owns my heart.
You transform the dense substance into the subtle
through our dance together in this rich realm of form.
i am shy to tell You of my love, though You are
the center of my life & my heart melts in You.
You have blessed me far beyond my imagining.
i am Your devotee, Shiva, i am Yours now.
i live my life for You, i give my life to You.
i take refuge in You: hold me deep, deep within!

need

i need to live with You day & night, my Shiva.
i need to wake up & feel You here next to me.
i need to say Your name before anything else.
i need to walk with You down the long wide hallway
& talk with You about things important to me,
like kindness, courage, endurance, respect & love.
i need to tell You what i learn from the Gita
& which part touches me the deepest & the least.
i need to show You my favorite old graveyard
& how peaceful & beautiful the silence is.
i need to walk with You outside in darkest night
& contemplate the stars & sing to them with You.
I need You to be so profoundly within me
that i cannot find who i used to be before
You revealed Your identity, my childhood friend.
i need You like air, water, sun, food & body.
i need to be Your partner, child, servant, vessel.
i need to feel You living deep down within me
as You look upon the world through my open eyes.
i need You like the body needs a beating heart,
so come, Shiva, come to me & be the rhythm
that sends the life pumping through this ready body,
wear me like a second skin, fill me with Your fire!

Shiva

i was wearing my long flannel nightgown,
almost awake in the early morning.
it was the winter of my fourteenth year
in the cold desolation of my wild soul.

You came to me. You came to be the hinge
on the opening door of my young heart.
You folded Yourself around me gently
& drew me close to You, until my breath
was Your breath & the emptiness was gone.
it was filled with Your fragrance & Your taste.
You wrapped Yourself around me, You cherished
me & Your heat melted me, melted me.

Your heat melted me, purified my heart.
You filled me up & burned the past away.
You marked me with Your transcendental love.

please forgive me

if i say that the sky is "my sky,"
i mean my experience of sky.
if i say that the sun is "my sun,"
i mean my experience of sun.
truly, sky & sun belong to all,
neither are they here for any one.
all exists in the purity of
its own essential bright beingness.

therefore, please forgive me when i call
You "my Shiva" in my devotion
to You, seated firmly in my heart.
experience of You in my life
truly is given for a blessing
& to nurture the shy tender heart
in which You dwell, freely spilling out
Your love into arteries & veins
so that You may shine Your light through me.
what am i but Your experience
of this embodied realm known through me?
such varieties of me & mine!
they fly through the clarity of sky
like leaves in turbulent autumn wind!
ah my Shiva! words fail yet again!