What December Said to January
Let the record
show I did
not go willingly.
Nor am I impressed
by the ruse you
call “The First,”
which you use
to hide the fact
I passed this way.
I am offended,
Do not forget,
I have frozen ponds
and cast blood-red berries
to the ground; I have
blotted out the sun.
You have crocuses,
I’ll grant you that;
but I have summoned them;
the rest you leave for
spring to solve.
My advice to you?
Take pride in what you do
and never follow suit;
your days are numbered;
be true to them.
From Poems, Slightly Used, by William Michaelian
For all those events, people, and experiences in this life and all others, that have helped me to grow and change and evolve, I give gratitude. Where I am is what I am.
For all of you, your infinite variety, your innate and beautiful diversity, and all that you have taught me, whether joyous or saddening, I give infinite gratitude.
For everything you have ever given me, will give me, or have never and never will give me, I return infinite gratitude. There is no loss, no absence, and nothing missing. Nothing is ever lost.
For everything that challenges me to grow, release, clear, and Just Get Over It, I give endless thanks. For those moments that offer me endless opportunities to clear and release judgments, hatred, and close-mindedness, I give deep and infinite gratitude. For those reflections in the mirrors of xenophobia and self-delusion, I return peace and light. For those victimologies and woundologies projected outwards onto the mirror of the world, I reflect only clear light. The moon reflecting in still water.
For everything that bleeds, infinite peace.
For everyone whose heart has not yet fully opened, because of fear, misunderstanding, hate, or desperation, infinite layers of white light. For every closed mind and closed heart I have ever encountered, infinite layers of the highest form in the Universe of the bright blue light of compassionate lovingkindess.
For every soul whose sacred contracts have not yet been fulfilled, infinite time and infinite patience. From this life, to the next. We journey together. For every kindred soul, born again and again, till we get it right, thanks for playing the Game. You are all expert players, and you all, always, win in the end. We go forward together. For every player of the Game, there are no wrong choices, and we all return to Union, in the end. Not one soul shall be lost. For every bond of karma not yet formed and for every bond already released, infinite learning, infinite grace, infinite love. The Buddha and the Cosmic Christ are not-two.
For every aid and comfort, infinite gratitude. For every act of tough love, infinite gratitude. For every moment of utter goofy hilarity—that laughter which brings us into the Universe of Essences—infinite gratitude. For every mutual shedding of tears, whether from suffering or from laughter, infinite gratitude.
For every pointless moment of ecstasy or despair, infinite gratitude. For every curse and vow and damning, infinite compassion. For every unnecessary lover, infinite transcendence. For every senseless act of beauty, infinite gratitude. For every meaningless suffering caused by lack, infinite abundance. For every random act of kindness, infinite awareness of the larger pattern. For every absurd and illicit and senseless desire, infinite fulfillment. We create our own realities, and so does everyone else.
For every word and world of blessing and hope, infinite gratitude. For every word and world of hurt, infinite gratitude. For every bridge between words and worlds, infinite gratitude. The Way is Light, and Love, and Truth, even when the Way is Dark, and Pain, and Obscure. Guidance comes from inside and from outside, there is no separation. The natural world is the supernatural world.
May we all receive blessings of perfect protection, grace and ease, and Light for the highest good for all concerned!
~~ A personal essay by writer/ artist/ musician Art Durkee, originally posted on December 24, 2006, on his blog Dragoncave.
some trees in my back yard
Blogging this past year has introduced me to a truckload of good writing, a virtual Arena full of fiction, poetry, art and music I might never have discovered were it not for fellow bloggers. I've gained a friendship or two from writerly communications with some of you and have benefited enormously from your occasional feedback, advice and/or encouragement, as well as the random remark here, indelible impression there, and remembered, oft-repeated sayings of what seems to me a summing-up of a worldview with which I find connection--little life mantras as spontaneous affirmations, not merely said, but lived. For example: Art Durkee's "It is what it is" and Bob Arnold's signatory "All's well."
These are not just unconscious sayings. It takes some people years and years to come to the level of acceptance of life as it "is", not how one wishes it to be; to habituate to a view of life that enables you to greet every single setback or hardship or calamity with the attitude that despite everything, life's still "well"--all of it.
I mention this here in detail because these two simple phrases somehow this past year bore themselves into my subconscious, over time replacing a long-ingrained auto-response that always seemed somehow to start with the question "Why?", dwelling too much on life's unfairness, settling for life's limitations instead of imagining its possibilities. But most of all, not understanding its ... Isness. You end up somehow concentrating on the separate parts, the good, the bad, the gray, the inconceivable, not seeing the whole picture, how it all fits together, etc., always trying to make sense of it, never succeeding. And along comes: "It is what it is." Period. And: "All's well." Seven words, from two people I have never met, caught in my consciousness, from fishing the waters of the Internet.
I don't understand the How, and will never probably figure out the Why. Especially the Why. Doesn't mean I intend to stop asking. But it no longer seems important that I KNOW. I still want to. Heck, who wouldn't? But it always seemed somehow so important to arrive at that information before I died. Dying and not knowing--that, for me, was my idea of Hell, the laughing parting gesture of the trickster, the ultimate cruel joke. But now, the sheer thatness of what is, is enough. (Cue from the curtain master: You're readers are squirming.. Wind it up already!).
My year-end gratitudes won't be as eloquent as Art Durkee's above but it seems a fine tradition to emulate. So I thank all the bloggers, writers, poets, artists, truth & justice seekers, animal lovers, free spirits, spiritual soul mates and fellow planet dwellers who have energized and inspired me in this past year--Thanks for making me laugh, for teaching me things, for showing by example how to be a better person, for sharing your thoughts and the wonderful products of your creativity. I won't even attempt to name you all, there are just too too many. I go plunging into the new year with all my hopes and flaws, my verbosity meter furiously clicking away--'keepitshort keepitshort keepitshort Keep-it-SHORT", proving that Awareness by itself is not enough. Another lesson noted.
Goodbye 2010. Hello to Whatever. I'm ready.