Sunday, August 31, 2014

Al-Khafid: Diminishment, Divine Depression

You cannot shy away from this,
how drawing yourself into a corner,
arms around legs,
head on knees,
merely compacts the pain
in a smaller space.

Then, the hiding has to explode into
or running
or fighting.

Choose the one that moves energy
the most effortlessly. No.
I cannot tell you which one it is,
only that
when you finally act,
you will not lie.

A single leaf trembles,
and I wonder,
what does the tree feel?


Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

Saturday, August 30, 2014

he will not write

he will not write,
not today or tomorrow
and I hold the tatters of words
like the body of a hummingbird.
i wanted him to fly
to dip his head to poem and paragraph,
but perhaps there was not enough
to feed him there.
Three times his body weight a day,
to keep such wings in motion,
but I seldom talk of sugar and red water.

i cannot make sense
of the way the sun rises,
over and over
north to south to north again
even behind the clouds.
i cannot make sense
of how fog can wisp
the deepest greens
billowing a moment
with the hawk’s passing.
i cannot make sense
of one in-breath and then
one out-breath,
hello, goodbye,
here, gone.

spiral fossils cannot hold
a living snail,
but I could still smell the ancient ocean,
skeletons in stone,
still taste the salt.
And that is what breaks me over and over,
and makes me dream 
no, makes me begin to long
three pounds of ash.



Al Qadar:  Holding the Center

You said it felt like a hurricane,
like folding your arms around the Beloved
and then having it all ripped away,
sheeting rain,
punishing wind,
and something in you that loves
beaches and water and sky
But don’t you see now?
The eye of the storm is passing overhead
a shaft of light on your upturned face.
Grace could not be grace without
our cries to heaven.
Brace for the next bands,
they will come as long as you are alive,
but don’t miss the deep floating stillness
when everything familiar has been wiped away
and the beach is littered with treasure from the Deep.


Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at


Al-Mu’id:  Reviving What is Worn Down

They laugh when I bring CDs instead of MP3s,
setting the tone for yoga class
but it is gently done.
I needed to chuckle with them,
watch how they shake rain off their coats
and out of gray hair,
how they fold themselves onto the mats
not like dancers, no,
more like boulders and tree roots
and all things substantial. 

I ache with the fine, light drops today,
even though my body is more limber
than it has been in months,
and in child pose, I whisper Ya Mu’id,
more a cry than a word of praise,
more a breathing out, hoping
they won’t see the tears
when we rock back on our heels.

A body folded over mind
will squeeze such things out.
I want you to see it,
two damp streaks,
as if you were crouched right beside me.

It’s hard when I don’t know if
I am struggling to revive a corpse,
or simply
clearing out weeds and folding in compost
with nothing in mind to plant just yet.
Revivals sound like blue grass
and strong, peaked EKG graphs.
I’m happy enough
enough, enough, enough,
today with qigong circles,
eddying their way
through hatha yoga’s thicker lines.


Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Kneel Here

Beyond the wilted flowers that no one watered,
my garden is in shambles,
the dogwood broken,
the expensive bowl hasta churned into
volcanic earth.
A front end loader perches where the fox gloves bloomed
this early spring,
just dirt now, gray in the gray morning.
They left the labyrinth I had built by hand
found rock by found rock,
but it looks stark now,
You cannot see the prison bars unless
you kneel here with me
in mourning,
how they frame off everything creative I try,
and make it
so much earth and tire tracks.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Crack

Harder to leave in sunshine,
the shaft of light catching the pink Miracle Lilly,
the good-bye gift of a Blue Jay feather dropping
dart-like into the thunderstorm-watered grass.
The breeze is pressings its face against the screen
and I want nothing more than to launch
a small blue kayak in the Thunder Bay river,
spy on the swans floating there.
The metal bird will swallow me whole, though,
wing over a tapestry of lakes and deep green
three hours now to keeping calendars and schedules,
but it’s hard to glue such a bowl back together
once it has cracked

in the hot sun.


Friday, August 22, 2014

The Queen of Red Ants

Do vows teach you not to feel
the edgy loneliness?
I rest my chin on my folded hands,
the empty yard rolled out,
it's ancient oaks gone, 
four at a time to root wilt.

The grass is thin and brown
and when I do qigong,
the moss holds the arches of my feet.

Red ants swarm, lifting their new queens
to the sky on delicate veined wings.
One lands on the screen, 
her antennae poking through for a moment,
then whisks away, 
mostly wind-driven.

I know she will fall to ground,
shed her wings and settle in.

Not so easy this warm summer day,
with winter hinting only--
back to school advertisements
and wood-filled trucks
heading home.


Coffee, Salmon and Quinoa

Warmth brings out the pine,
the incense buzzing
with yellow jacket

Fairest breeze speaks the maple,
its red-tinged leaves
like the rising prelude
to red noses and cheeks.

The fan whirls, too,
airing front to back,
TV to greenhouse,
blended just so.

In a while,
coffee, salmon, quinoa--
like strangers meeting
in a wooden canoe--

simple life.
simply life.


Alpena's Boardwalk

Slow curve in concrete, 
mirror of the river's undulation
but frozen in fake boardwalk finery,
we promenade.
I used to puff to keep up with him,
but now,
we can walk a little more together,
he's taller but my legs are longer.

He talks about how the road used to 
slide down on gravel to the edge,
and all was stone and weeds,
and fisher-folks could sit six at a time on a side
and never see each other,
just lines and bobbers in the current.

Now the flowers are bordered,
the black bridge arching splendid and
fleshly painted,
and soon a hotel will rise
in a spot where, 
today at least,
I can still find fossils.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Icon

Needlepoint warmth,
runs along bone,
opens the metal door,
and I slam it tight,
lean my back against it,
left heel planted.

Corivan is my newest character’s name
(stranger names have happened)
he could not heal
the wound of his falling ship/companion--
I’ll send you the story sometime safe
when the end has become the beginning again.

Relieving to feel your melancholy,
right through your hands,
the foggy land wrapping
and the sense you could settle your back against
a great tree—
that would be your icon today.
I understand; that’s where I write from,
where giggles don’t bubble up
and make a lonely space around me,
where nothing tries to mirror
and rain, like honest tears,
doesn't distort.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

How do you hold fear?

How do you hold fear?
Kitten-like, cuddled and purring in your heart
or bird-like fluttering in your belly?
How do you know when to put the feline down,
to open the cage and urge the avian
out into air and space?
What catnip do you use,
what light do you shine?

And when the heart and belly
have more space,
how has your face in the mirror changed?

It's not that fear cannot feel
gentle and light sometimes,
it's just that we cannot hug another 
fur and claws and purrs
nor can we lay down at night
when the mind flutters, and beats at the window.

Awful, how being full
can leave us
so alone.


Friday, August 15, 2014

Folds of the Script is now in Audio!

Just wanted to let folks know that 
Folds of the Script
(one of my mainstream science fiction novels)
is now available
from, and iTunes
as a fully produced audio program.

The narrator is Gregory Peyton, an up and coming voice actor--
I am sooo pleased to have found him 
before the really well-known authors
gobble him up.  :-)

I sure hope you will at least listen to the sample--I think you'll be hooked both with the story and with Gregory's sensitive and inspired reading of it.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

The Non-Dual Gospel of Matthew: 10:41


“The one who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and the one who receives a righteous person because he is a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward.”

It’s so easy to heed the strident voice,
the voice that says it is right,
the charismatic powerful ones.
But what is the reward of such things?
Change the world,
have a tribe,
the giddy and inflexible belief
that you, in turn, must be
correct, holy and perfect?
Prophets and the righteous
are only at their best
when they point back to God
and let you walk

If you never stumble or err,
you’re probably doing it wrong.


The Non-Dual Gospel of Matthew: 10:40


“Whoever receives you receives me and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

Out beyond this gently wrinkling skin,
the cosmos waits to hold hands,
to look into your eye like a lover,
to fan the sweaty threads of you hair from your forehead.
We might spend our lives
looking for the Beloved,
but really,
you just passed your credit card
to the gas attendant
and missed
the nail-holes in

her hands.