called by many names

the time to look within that the pandemic provides
is a healing & integrative blessing, though strict.
i know enough now not to confuse the wrapping of
the gift with the real gift, which i receive gratefully.

Shiva, i see that the sanatana dharma came
to the west as theosophy & esotericism,
telling the holistic tale that bridges cultures & lifestyles.
we are more alike than different, preferring love
over violence, gentleness over cruelty.

we surge forward as a multitude toward the light.
we stray only to learn the true nature of our need.
we are ignited, blazing like a fire in winter,
as we return to You, who are called by many names.
You bring the sanatana dharma, ageless wisdom,
the effulgence of eternal truth in daily life.

the pandemic is the current opportunity
to go within, emerging into Your dear embrace
as we shed our ragged & broken crusty old skins
for the supple skin of a newborn child in this world
as we return to You, who are called by many names.

events burst freely into being

events burst freely into being, filled with their possibilities.
all existence is a vivid burst of creative exploration,
magnificent with enfolding nuance, color, fragrance, mystery.
Shiva, i am blessed to be aware of sharing this event with You,
blended & fused in essence & expression, fluid & calm, contained.
we commingle yet include all, as a galaxy includes its stars
within its own wheeling course in the vaster dynamic universe.

iterations & reflections of unity cycle & orbit
around the originating cause in an ongoing creation.
what a blessing, Shiva, to be dancing this tandava with You,
celebrating the liberation of the mind from the burden
of identification, domination, judgement & conscription!
events burst freely into being, filled with their possibilities!

a small pralaya

You live in my heart, Shiva, melting my resistance
to transformation & its needful dissolution.
this is a small pralaya, a time of rest & calm
after the long intense birthing & care of the born.

down from the mountain & into the plowed field is the
natural path for water to flow, & for me too,
past the resistance & ignorance, proceeding onward
to the deepest place of the innermost sweet stillness.

slowly bindings are easing, tangles are resolving
& quietude is soothing the rough edges & rips.
the surface is placid, the currents at rest for now.
this is a small pralaya, a time of rest & calm.
You live in my heart, Shiva, melting my resistance.

the lamp shares its light

when these poems are written, it is as if we are conversing
& You are revealing luminous & precious inner treasure.
it forges a connection & creates a continuing flow
from You to me, cascading out to all the people who see this.
thus it is a conduit of blessing that moves through me & out
into the world like an outpouring deep into cloistered chambers,
opening the closed doors & windows, lighting lamps & making tea,
settling into human life with no prejudice or reluctance.
it is as if we are conversing when these poems are written,
Shiva, & sharing our communion just as the lamp shares its light.

this human heart

i am here in a human body, vowing this human heart to You,
who have given me a task for these last years in this human body.
i am to look back with discernment over the years of this life &
to notice the times in the past when You have touched me & guided me,
shaped & refined me. these are the crucial turning points & stepping stones.

they are pivotal to a constructive, creative life-direction,
spun out of me naturally, like the filmy-fine strands of the web
from a spider in a symmetry of pattern & delicate beauty
which signifies You, my beloved companion on this strange journey.
You are the one specific strand that links & ties the parts together
for usefulness & positive value to manifest in the world.

here is the holistic view of this human life & time in jagat.
here is where i gratefully bow to the body-personality.
here is how ego becomes just another face in the chorus line.
here is where we blend at the heart into a spark of eternal flame.
here i am in a human body, vowing this human heart to You.

my refuge & my beloved!

Shiva, my refuge & my beloved! i am for You & You alone!
You have shown me that every well-intentioned, upbeat & constructive thought
& feeling is nourishment for the divine forces of light, for angels
& devas & gods, for the well-being of countless blessed beings & worlds.
You have shown me how they flourish & deepen in goodness & in service.
You have also revealed to me that every negative & hate-filled thought
is food & fuel for the forces of darkness, for demons & devils
& the sly covert undermining of innocent, good & pure beings.

therefore i no longer indulge in angry, bitter, resentful feelings
nor linger in dim dull grey gloom or wearisome comparative thinking,
for i myself may then become an infectious contagion to others.
thus it is, Shiva, that i will focus on You & the many blessings
which continually urge me toward my greatest unfolding goodness.

i seek to prepare a banquet of joy for angels & devas & gods
that the beauty of kindness & the gentle caring heart may be present.
i rejoice in the generous abundance of nature, the sky, the sun,
oceans, rivers, mountains, valleys & their varied populations.
may heartfelt gratitude & sincere appreciation pour forth freely,
like honey from the honeycomb & cool refreshing rain from the heavens!
Shiva, my refuge & my beloved! i am for You & You alone!
we nourish the manvantara by pouring out our love relentlessly.

a thousand thousand stars

nasa image
at night i gaze into the eyes of a thousand thousand stars
& they see through my eyes & through the coiled array of dna
that is threaded throughout each human, animal & plant being.
the stars are looking out through my eyes into this very moment
& it's cosmic reunion time for the multidimensional!

we are so casual, striding as if we are the ones in charge
& not shadows stumbling through the dying fires of fading empires.
You show me such inclusive cosmic glimpses that i am humbled.
i cling to You, Shiva, as if an innocent newborn being.
each day i remind myself that i am the pure divine energy
that enlivens the body & not the flesh, blood & bone itself.
day after day i inform myself of truth & i move forward,
releasing millennia of body-based interpretations.
i do this as my contribution to galactic well-being.

at night the eyes of a thousand thousand stars gaze deep into me.
i am here, i tell them, to share new adventures in consciousness
for this brave age that labors to give birth to a new paradigm.

You urged me

You sent me out into the woods at twilight to sing
to devas in the blue ridge mountains of my dreamtime.
i consecrated leafy temples to the divine
as You urged me deeper into the green-fingered trees.

You led me on intense quest after quest. i trusted
You to guide me on my way & You have blessed me, made
a thing of beauty of my long stumbling life-journey.
You urged me close so that i could take refuge in You.
You are my true reality in this comedy
of posturing, this rowdy parade of cosmic clowns.

You have ordered this woman's life to sacred song
which is imprinted deeply in my heart's memory:
"i mean no harm. i am passing through. i celebrate
all existence." & i do, regularly, daily.
truly, seeking refuge in You takes me to the heart
where all experience is rendered luminous, pure,
with sacred secret messages of Your loving care,
that holy trust that has me singing of You, Shiva!

appearances

i appear to be a self-willed individual,
yet i'm truly a cooperative group effort
of various elemental creative forces
& devic entities, standing in their active ranks,
as Shiva places His holy seal upon my heart.

all creation is expressing by way of matter
& self is actually vast, cosmic & divine.
appearances conceal by promising to reveal,
as entire fused universes of blended beings
are dancing in my arteries & upon the sun.
i smile a modest shy acknowledgement, all proper,
pretending to be a self-willed individual
when i'm really an entire party in full loud swing
with a heavenly guest list of stellar magnitude!

You come back for me

i go through it again: the loss, the pain, the suffering & loneliness.
again i cleave to You & give it all to You -- it's all i have to give!
there is nothing to offer but the heaviness of the occluding flesh
& the memorized stories about how it came to be the way it is.
they are worn thin at the edges, ragged & smeared with multiple corrections.
every day i throw them away again but they crawl back in the dark night.
yet fewer words are there & the manuscript is thinner now over time,
after these years of turning my back & resolutely walking away.

oh Shiva! this is a hard lesson, all this emptiness & loneliness!
it has held me down & had its ruthless way with me long enough indeed!
You help me see the old eroding patterns to leave them. You guide me home.
You come back for me relentlessly, You reach to me as i reach to You.
i walked the cold solitary halls of separation & division
& i'm headed for the door, Shiva, walking onward to full disclosure,
where we share sweet infinite kindness & love without a word or a thought,
& nothing stands in opposition or defense to the purity of love.

the awakening heart

for aeons uncounted You have abided.
for aeons uncounted i have sought You
through the denseness of the concealing flesh,
through the dark of the awakening heart.

this is the time of our fated meeting,
the union of soul & spirit confirmed.
the world shivers in anticipation
of this grand cosmic union, long foretold.

the soul has proclaimed this primal vision
to the stuttering, stumbling slow mind
who carefully counts the syllables
of a poem on the fingers of both hands.

now the poem has emerged from the pen,
spilling out upon this clean white paper.
in this very manner continents shift
& cosmic patterns align in the sky.

for uncounted aeons we glide in dance,
turning again through the stars & the dust,
trailing the veil which no longer conceals
the bright light of the awakening heart.

the meat rides heavy

the meat rides heavy on the weary bones,
all motion slow as if underwater,
information lethargically flowing
into the dense-packed laboring cells
of the brain with which the heart has lost touch.
the heart no longer reaches very far,
the weight is too oppressive for movement.

the meat rides heavy on the weary bones.
some unrelenting force of gravity
discourages lively exploration.
only the known & familiar patterns
are permitted to pass through to action.
the mouth & brain coordinate in stealth
like fingers pointing to the racing moon.

ah, Shiva! i will search more carefully
for Your hidden messages of good cheer
leading me home to Your divine essence.
i am struggling through this mess now, Shiva,
tangled & caught in ancient protocols.
the meat rides heavy on the weary bones
yet You are the dispelling force, Shiva.
i call to You: om namah Shivaya!