Thursday, June 11, 2009

Beyond Empty

I could imagine calling out
Into a gap between
The seen and the heard -
Feeling nothing more than emptiness.
I could wish for an invigorating rush-
A flash of trembling light held, not crushed
In the palms of my sweating hands.

I could even close my eyes to see
A whisper of a wish taking shape,
Floating on two wings, then four- and away.
But drained of wishes,
What do I have to hold
Other than two hands
Curled into fists.

So there is that one time when
I heard a monk's sermon on countless wants-
Of man after man climbing to his own peak
Topping out on a chorus of shouted ambitions.
The monk also spoke the existence
That hides behind the grasping words,
That wants nothing but more of itself.

If I could swallow sharp edges,
If, by degrees, the clenching eased -
Do you have a few words
That speak to how to be alive in grace?
Would you lay your hands over my ears
And bring a peace
That flows from base of my spine?

Or would you ask why
I make victories contingent on someone else?
Would you assure me
That I may have enough to love what is -
Would you coach me
To entertain a hopeful doubt
And breathe in and out to invite the calm?

Yesterday and tomorrow do not need to match
And even for a scientist,
They do not exist.
I could step forward
Though halting through the newness
If I ask how I might have it some other way
Might you say that today could be the day.

June 11, 2009

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