just reminding me

A thought went up my mind to-day 
by Emily Dickinson

A thought went up my mind to-day 
That I have had before, 
But did not finish,–some way back, 
I could not fix the year, 

Nor where it went, nor why it came 
The second time to me, 
Nor definitely what it was, 
Have I the art to say. 

But somewhere in my soul, I know 
I’ve met the thing before; 
It just reminded me–‘t was all– 
And came my way no more. 

the center of everything

Where Does the Dance Begin, Where Does It End?

Don’t call this world adorable, or useful, that’s not it.

It’s frisky, and a theater for more than fair winds.
The eyelash of lightning is neither good nor evil.
The struck tree burns like a pillar of gold.

But the blue rain sinks, straight to the white
feet of the trees
whose mouths open.
Doesn’t the wind, turning in circles, invent the dance?
Haven’t the flowers moved, slowly, across Asia, then Europe,
until at last, now, they shine
in your own yard?

Don’t call this world an explanation, or even an education.

When the Sufi poet whirled, was he looking
outward, to the mountains so solidly there
in a white-capped ring, or was he looking
to the center of everything: the seed, the egg, the idea
that was also there,
beautiful as a thumb
curved and touching the finger, tenderly,
little love-ring,

 as he whirled,
oh jug of breath,
in the garden of dust? 

Mary Oliver, from Why I Wake Early (2004)

when grace carries you to higher ground

“Allow”  by Dana Faulds

There is no controlling life.
Try corralling a lightening bolt,
containing a tornado. Dam a
stream and it will create a new
channel.

Resist, and the tide
will sweep you off your feet.
Allow, and grace will carry
you to higher ground.

The only
safety lies in letting it all in –
the wild and the weak; fear,
fantasies, failures and success.
When loss rips off the doors of
the heart, or sadness veils your
vision with despair, practice
becomes simply bearing the truth.

In the choice to let go of your
known way of being, the whole
world is revealed to your new eyes.

born of non-doing

Perfect Joy

Here is how I sum it up:

Heaven does nothing: its non-doing is its serenity.
Earth does nothing: its non-doing is its rest.
From the union of these two non-doings
All actions proceed.
All things are made.
How vast, how invisible
This coming-to-be!
All things come from nowhere!
How vast, how invisible
No way to explain it!
All beings in their perfection
Are born of non-doing.
Hence it is said:
“Heaven and earth do nothing
Yet there is nothing they do not do.”

Where is the man who can attain
To this non-doing?

Chuang Tzu

reckless hearts


On foot

I had to walk through the solar systems,
before I found the first thread of my red dress.
Already, I sense myself.
Somewhere in space hangs my heart,
sparks fly from it, shaking the air,
to other reckless hearts

Edith Sodergran

transl. by Stina Katchadourian
in {Risking Everything} – 110 Poems of Love and Revelation, edited by Roger Housden 

what a gift it has been

Two poems by Rumi

This is love: to fly toward a secret sky,
to cause a hundred veils to fall each moment.
First, to let go of life.
In the end, to take a step without feet;
to regard this world as invisible,
and to disregard what appears to be the self.

Heart, I said, what a gift it has been
to enter this circle of lovers,
to see beyond seeing itself,
to reach and feel within the breast.

 The Divani Shamsi Tabriz, XIII

Love is reckless; not reason.
Reason seeks a profit.
Love comes on strong,
consuming herself, unabashed.

Yet, in the midst of suffering,
Love proceeds like a millstone,
hard surfaced and straightforward.

Having died of self-interest,
she risks everything and asks for nothing.
Love gambles away every gift God bestows.

Without cause God gave us Being;
without cause, give it back again.

 Mathnawi VI, 1967-1974