the river

it happens once that a river bids me to come & lie on its 
long water-smoothed swathes of stone beach & touch its fossil runes &
time-sculpted stone poetry. the wisdom of the heart informs my
fingertips & i am enraptured by the river: its limestone
bluffs, meandering expanses of tactile river-refined stones.

they tell aeonic-long tales of the survival & ascension
of creatures from another geological age than this one.
they move me to my deepest heart & core. here at the core i find
my sincere root connection to this life, this realm wherein i now
find this body. it is embedded in the moment just as the
fossil beings are embedded in stone. i am not separate
from all that surrounds & supports me. i too am an expression
of Shiva here. what a grand dance this truly is: the minerals
in these bones & the dust on the moon, all one big cosmic event!

i tell this to the river as we lie on the stones in the sun,
blessed by the touch of warmth right down to our boulders, pebbles & bones.
i share my last dream, in which the river blesses me with a stone
imprinted with the stylized shape of an eye. this is the potent
dream--my invitation--that brings me here today, down the long rough
country road to the hidden winding path toward the swift river.
this Shiva-blessed river is kin to the great Ganges springing
from snow-melt in the far Himalayan heights half a world away.
i tell this to the river as we lie side by side in the sun.

once again i feel time & space shift & blend inexplicably,
a fresh fossil moment showing its story to be seen & known,
not hidden any more. we have no secrets, stripped down to essence,
to the wholeness of all existence. the river & i, under
the sun & sky: we lie together on the bedrock of it all
& Shiva holds us in the fullness of His pure eternal love.
He is another sun, hidden behind the one we see, concealed
within the mystery of the secret chamber within the heart.

the river knows this mystery too & is smiling in the way
that rivers can: with a thousand thousand bright shining glints of light.
now at my feet i see revealed the sacred stone of my deep dream,
emerging to be my talisman & companion wherever
Shiva sends us, graced with helpful dreams & miracles as we go.
this stone is known as "Shiva's eye," a guardian on my altar.
the river is the buffalo, the first national river park,
protected from development for all its wooded winding length.

Shiva holds us close to Him, me & the buffalo river stone.
we dream together of lessons learned & goodness to be revealed,
& the river flows clear & i rejoice: OM NAMAH SHIVAYA!

this life makes sense

following Your guidance, Shiva, i continue to review
my life story & the blinders placed there by memory &
society, finally revealed & stripped of their power.
You have ripped the bandage from the wound & healed it with Your touch.

You healed it with Your touch, strongly resembling a surgical
procedure, as the whole is freed from the iron grip of the
presumptuous part. i need a new perspective now. it's time.

the upheaval of the quaking earth i long considered firm
beneath my feet has flung me out of my resting place & tossed
me in the air. & that is how i learned to fly & look from
there on high to see the patterns playing out in a vast expanse.
i see the story scrolling by, the hidden now revealed--&
this life makes sense, i can see it now. this life makes sense at last!

this life makes sense at last as the hidden stands revealed,
shaped by Your holy hands to prepare me for the part i play.
all i've learned in the past must now be dropped, must be left behind,
just like the empty chrysalis when the butterfly takes flight
& forgets all that had come before as if it were a dream.

this dream of maya

this dream so grips us that we do not see
we are insubstantial wisps of smoke & bone,
blurred reflections in a dusty mirror.
ah, the beauty of the shifting colors,
the subtle hint of light & shadow glimpsed
beyond the swift moving montage of form!
this dream of maya invokes the senses
with the bright promise of fulfilled desire.
here, rainbows are mystic stringed instruments
in the hands of the heavenly devas.
ah! the beauty of the shifting colors,
swirling in that sweet varied melody!
the dream glows before us enticingly,
enchanting in this lengthy human sleep.

yet i do awaken from the dream's spell
resuming my firm stance, cleaving to You
in sincere sadhana & devotion
far beyond the dream's enticing allure,
to blend my heart & mind with You, Shiva.
again i persevere in Your service
as i have vowed, & so i do remain.
i will stand steadfast with You, dear Shiva,
upon the skyclad heights of Mount Kailash.

a realm of endless mirrors

i dwell in a realm
of endless mirrors,
i myself a dream,
writing a poem
about a woman
who sees that the world
is a dream & she
now writes a poem
about this event.

and next, Lord Shiva
wakes me up with a
bang & a shake &
a warm hearty laugh.
He takes hold of me
& opens my eyes --
& i am at home,
at home, at home now
in Lord Shiva's arms.

we are the people

we are the people
of flesh & smoke,
children of the dream,
shaping our hands
into alphabets
for those who cannot hear.

we cannot hear!

we are the people
of blood & bone,
gathering our food,
protecting it
with swords, hands & words,
urged on by our desire.

we are hungry!

we are the people
of mist & fog
who rise & dissolve--
invisible--
as the sun drinks up
the water of our lives.

we are fleeting!

we are the people
who rise & fall,
a luminous rain
to soak the soil
with blood & blessing,
turning & returning.

we rise & fall!

we are smoke & mist,
drifting in dream
in this reverie,
lovely maya,
sweetly inviting,
shadows urged to action.

we are so dazed!

our hands form the shape
of the word "love".
our hearts demand this.
love gives itself,
offers a place to stand
even in this dream.
although our blossoms fade,

we are fragrant!