Thursday, March 18, 2021

Lightness of Being

 


Dance of the mayfly,

storm of fire ants

beneath the jungle canopy,

thundering herds of wildebeests

across the serengeti,

bones of a stegosaurus

millions of years deceased

in some faraway world

on earth’s perpetual sojourn

around its parent star,

human journey through time

illustrious home of earth

generation upon generation

stretching from tortuous past

into an uncertain future,

star going nova within the

expansive cosmos

engulfing its planets in a

momentous release of enormous energy,

owl beckoning for the

fall of night

to awaken its predatory spirit,

mothers in labor all over the

this wondrous world

on the same day,

destined to perpetuate the species.

 

Life transient

Impermanent

like the passing breath,

like a singular beat of the heart,

gift of existence

exquisitely present,

surprisingly brilliant,

intensely felt,

momentary,

often blinding,

unsettling,

full of sadness

and poignancy

and joy.

 

Life bonded

to emotions,

forged by love,

grounded in consciousness,

imbedded in now,

shaped by myriad experiences,

haunted by shades of past and

shadows of future.

 

Yet, there is an

Intrinsic lightness to being,

that embraces the present,

created and extinguished

moment to moment

within the indefatigable

arc of time.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Holiday Message for the Coming Year - 2021

 The year 2020 has been in many ways disturbing and unsettling.  What, of course, comes to mind almost immediately is the COVID 19 pandemic that has claimed so many lives and has been so economically devastating to many facets of the national economy, and especially for those who have lost their livelihoods and businesses.  Added to this national burden are the deep fractures that have been exposed in regard to a national sense of unity, shared-mission and purpose.

Along with this overwhelming sense of loss, however, is the untold bravery, courage and unwavering energy displayed by so many who have risked their own lives and safety to come to the aid of all of us for the unselfish commitment to the greater good.  These individuals have come from many diverse positions - as doctors, nurses, emergency response teams, members of the police and fire departments and first responders of all kinds.  To this list, we should include all those responsible for providing food; for delivering the mail; for the taxi and bus drivers, train operators and pilots; for the teachers; for all those who care for the elderly and for all those who provide the essential services that we all too often take for granted.

My wish for the New Year (2021) is that we grow wiser from the events that have befallen us and see the future as a time for healing and learning from our collective missteps.  My hope is that the new year will be a time of new beginnings.  My dream is that we will finally come to recognize that regardless of our national origin, religious affiliation, skin color or sexual orientation we are all members of the same species with the same physical bodies, the same architecture of the brain, the same genetic makeup, the same constellation of feelings, of hopes and of dreams.  Each of us is worthy of the same opportunities to grow and develop as sentient beings on this most remarkable planet that also needs our kindness, care, and attention.  Earth is, after all, our only home.

Best Wishes to All

Thursday, August 27, 2020

America 2020

 

America 2020

The national leader

towering epitome of

crazed ambition,

pitiful ignorance

remarkable stupidity,

a hollowed-out spirit

directing a vast army of

the walking dead

with a cacophony of lies and

intentioned misdirections.

 

America 2020

vast homeland

marooned on a ruderless ship

bound for perdition,

blind to the truths

that lie about like

deserted corpses,

blind to its own endemic racism,

its xenophobia,

its homeless and dispossessed,

blind to its blood-soaked history

leaving the insidious remanants of holocausts

around the globe,

blind to its hatreds

its relentless and perpetual violence,

blind to the tattered fabric of its

own brutish past,

blind to the scorched and beleagured planet,

blind to the magnificent beauty of

its very homeland

filled with such wondrous diversity.

 

America 2020

land of the walking dead

fluent in endless praise

of their great country

that they proclaim with

supposed love and reverence,

yet perversity reigns

as poisons are injected with

haphazard indifference into

the sky and water and soil,

as the automobile is held sacred,

oil valued more that the future,

science held suspect

and the health and safety

of the next generations

discarded like an old and battered

pair of jeans.

 

America 2020

citizenry armed and dangerous

the gun  a tool of vigilanty justice

beneath the shadow of the noose

where the spirits of all of those

black souls hung and mutilated

scream out at us as a reminder

of our collective decadence,

law and order the mantra

spoken with eloquence

on the trash heap of battered justice,

prisons filled with the poor and

people of color,

prison cheap labor abudant,

lives emptied of meaning

among the denizens of captivity.

 

America 2020

homeless everywhere,

children with hungry demeanor

plague the streets,

poor and the destitute

queueing up at foodbanks,

bivouaced on parkbenches,

convening makeshift alliances at

bus stations and subway platforms,

crumbs dispensed with fanfare

from lavish banquets where

deals are made

and wealth assured for those

with profit running through their bloodstream.

 

America 2020

nation of sleepwalkers

oblivious to the reality all around them

to the incessant beauty of the

human world,

to the cosmos,

to the striking wonders of the

natural world,

to all the needless suffering,

oblivious to the inherent precious and

transient nature of passing time.

 

America 2020

standing at the abyss

ready to make the plunge

into the swirling vortex of

its own cumulative past,

ready to consign reason

to the graveyard,

ready to dissolve into the chaos

of violence and needless destruction,

ready to surrender freedom to the

vagaries and madness of senseless authority,

ready to consign an extraordinary experiment

that was America into

the unforgiving graveyard and

the future to desolation and regret.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Caravan of Dreams - Introduction


By way of information I was born when the nation was about 157 years old – the US Constitution was signed on Sept. 17, 1787. As nations go, this country was barely out of its nappies. Continuing with this absurd kind of mathematics, at my current age of 75, my life has spanned 32% of the nation’s entire history (as of 2019). That represents a significant part of the American experience. Enfolded within this 75 years there were many wars along with a varied and explosive array of social issues including the atomic bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki near the end of World War II, the anti-Vietnam War era, the Civil Rights Movement and Jim Crow, the Gay Rights Movement, the Anti-Gun Rights Movement spawned by an incessant wave of random mass shootings, the Women’s Movement, the storm of conflict around, the Women’s right to Abortion (Roe v Wade), the horrendous destabilizing period around the destruction of the World Trade Towers in New York (Sept. 11, 2001) and the concomitant war in Afghanistan, the Gulf Wars and on and on it goes.

We are all both the benefactors and victims of the history of our times – this is an inescapable reality. Hopefully, this caravan of dreams will shed some light on all of this especially for those who may read it at some future time when these aspects of history seem so distant that their essential significance becomes muted and seemingly irrelevant.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Bird Song



They capture in their
fleeting presence
a momentary glimpse
of nature’s resilience.

Magnificent eagle effortlessly
riding the air in a pageantry of remarkable grace,
engineering its nest
in liberating spring air.

Evening cry of the owl
perched on a crimson-hued tree
in the light of the waning sun
preparing for the hunt.

Ever-attentive robin
perusing its kingdom
for worm sign.

Sandpipers scurry across the water’s edge in
perpetual motion
forever vigilant and
prepared to take to the air at
any sign of danger.

Brown pelicans
glide across the water’s surface
without any apparent effort
skilled and impeccable fishermen.

In the heart of the forest, bird song
permeates the air
within the timeline of generations
on this most remarkable planet.

Cooper’s hawk
magnificent creature
prepared to fly like the wind
to embrace his victim
within deadly talons

They ensnare a kaleidoscope of color
in their plumage and remind us of the
wonder of life in all its
variety and splendor.

They capture in their
fleeting presence
a momentary glimpse
of nature’s resilience.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Ode to a National Pastime



Young men
tribute to ancient gladiators
fitted with helmets and awesome shoulder pads,
formidable apparitions
built like anvils
torsos hewn from ferocious action,
superb exemplars of manly flesh.

Young men
on the escape route
from poverty’s gnawing
relentless and aching abyss,
adored and maligned by anxious spectators
primed for the adrenalin rush
blood sport of the games.

Young men
readied for combat
relentless drills
blind obeisance to
dictates of savage competition
to make team owners remarkably rich.

Young men
destined to a future
adorned with consequences
battered brains within
assaulted skulls and
thoroughly abused bodies,
such are the hallmarks of
civilization.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Parkland Florida and Beyond



Seventeen dead
senselessly subtracted
from life’s equation
by a young man
captivated by chaotic circuitry
within a storm-tossed brain,
in a culture where
compassion cannot compete with
allure of profit,
where madness has
ready access to murderous weapons
needless death of little consequence,
where mass shootings have
become mere punctuation
in the grammar of the
everyday.