poem: limping to the narrow gate of Eternal Life

poem: limping to the narrow gate
of Eternal Life

this morning, awakening
under a blanket of ice,
more sub-freezing and ice
coming, and then the big snow

covid continues nipping our heels
in a world of political turmoil
and nations divided with
endemic injustice holding steady

in this deep freeze season,
society fragile under cultural dominance
in an era far from the divine consciousness
besieged from all sides

limping into forty days of Lent,
smack in the face of our hubris, conceit,
and sentimentality, reflecting and praying
the plank be removed from our eyes

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
February 15, 2021

photos by Herb Stone
‘Pure Ice with Snow to Come’

 

 

 

poem: one can not serve two masters

poem: one can not serve two masters

to what dominant influence
are you captive
to what master has your life
become like chattel

is your master
fear, greed, envy,
pride, desire, wrath,
power, control, domination

or is your master
grace, love, Self truth,
wholeness, mutuality, healing,
belonging, Cosmic consciousness

who are we,
what is our purpose,
what is our life’s meaning,
what is it we intend to create here

mind your surroundings,
what are you receiving
with open hands and
on what do you stand

truth, beauty, and goodness
or falsity, repulsiveness, and depravity,
what is it you intend to create
on this Earth with this one, wild life

that which is not transformative
for the personal and collective good
is transmitted as suffering from
person to person and generation to generation

choose to be the change
the world needs and
apply yourself through
disciplined practice benefiting all beings

dedicate yourself to
creative expression which
sets all free, liberates, and
connects all in kinship and belonging

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
February 4, 2021

Art images:

1) Harry Sternberg, ‘Fascism’

2) Kate Deciccio, ‘Amanda Gorman, American Poet’

(reader’s note: gratitude to those who have
influenced me and whose influence is
flowing through this poem: Jesus, the Christ,
from his sermon on the mound found in the Gospel
of Mark, Gary Zukav, Mary Oliver, Richard Rohr,
Maya Angelo, and Mark Nepo)

Reflection: The foundation of my Spiritual being

Reflection: The foundation of my Spiritual being

The two quotes below are foundational to my understanding of God and Christ consciousness, by whatever names, and to the spiritual practice of my daily life. While the quotes are from the Judeo-Christian tradition perspective, my study of other traditions supports that these perspectives are represented in them as well thus they are universal in their applicability.

The first quote is from Marcus Borg, a New Testament theologian and author. And the second quote is from Walter Brueggemann, an Old Testament theologian and author. Both are highly respected scholars and teachers in their fields and have written prodigiously.

Both quotes below address the non-partisan aspect of the political nature of Jesus’ Way and ancient Israel’s resistance to the dominant imperial Empires. They are political because they affect the way in which we live together in community. Their practice in our personal and collective lives includes resistance to the imperial accounts of reality grounded in power, control, and violence and the advocacy of alternative realities grounded in radical grace and radical love of authentic communities of belonging.

“The way of Jesus was both personal and political. It was about personal transformation. And it was political, a path of [nonviolent] resistance to the domination system and advocacy of an alternative vision of life together under God.”

—Marcus Borg

“….the tradition of emancipatory covenant making….affirms human agents who have the capacity and responsibility to act transformatively for the well-being of the human community and the ecology of creation. All of that pertains to the ancient context wherein the subversive narrative of Israel lived in ongoing tension with imperial accounts of reality, and amid that tension resisted imperial accounts while proposing alternatives.”

-Walter Brueggemann- “God, Neighbor, Empire”

And so we see that our struggles today against the imperialistic Empire’s accounts of reality (i.e., our resistance to insurrectionists attacking our democracy) in their dominant power, control, and violence are age old in their tensions between violent domination vis-a-vis liberation and freedom to live together in alternative communities of the Truth of Self and the authenticity of belonging. Until all are free none are free. The suffering of the other is also my suffering. So we resist and dream our dreams and see our visions of a better way together for which we must never stop working.

Tat tvam asi. That I am.

Shanti, shalom, peace dear Beloveds.

poem: writing it down for healing

poem: writing it down for healing

trying to figure things out
finding my psyche and soul
greatly wearied and in mourning
in the postmortem of the culture wars
and efforts to destroy our nation’s democracy

and so I write it down, it is what I do,
until I grow in understanding and feel
I can authentically express myself
as to my witness and truth,
then searching for the right words and
moving them around on the page in composition

while some may be ready to move
beyond these atrocities in triumphalism, I sit here,
on a foggy mid-winter morn during the pandemic,
observing the suffering and waste and contemplating
the challenges, preparing for the work ahead
in the slow recovery from our collective trauma

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
January 25, 2021

photo by Herb Stone
“On a foggy mid-winter morn during the pandemic”

(reader’s note: Richard Rohr teaches: “If we do not
transform our pain, we will transmit it.” )

poem: ode to our nation on inauguration day 2021

 

poem: ode to our nation on inauguration day 2021

today our nation
inaugurates our 46th.
president and vice president
Joe and Kamala
who feel like family
Papa and Auntie

after the past four years
of a president and his administration
bullying its’ citizens
undermining our rights
eroding our democracy
empowering domestic terrorist
cutting off world allies
causing death and confusion in a pandemic
and leading an insurrection
we citizens of good conscience
find some relief and optimism again

fellow Americans
let us come together
in confession, repentance, and reconciliation
healing one another and our nation
that we will finally do the hard work
of forming a more perfect union together

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
January 20, 2021
Inauguration Day

Photo credits: Vox, AP, AFP

poem: savasana

poem: savasana

gonna take a little
rest today
from the resistance

living in times
of injustice, pandemic, and insurrection
is taxing

keeping up the good trouble
is demanding
body, mind, and spirit

in this age
adrift so far from God
can be dispiriting

gonna rest up
binding up wounds
find my repose

the activist
the bodhisattva
the wounded healer

shall return
re-energized
warriors of the heart
Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
January 17, 2021

art image ‘Savasana Chakra
Garden’ by Kimberly Russick

(reader’s note: Savasana is the ‘corpse
pose’ in yoga which is traditionally
used as the last pose of a class and is
a state of deep relaxation also used to
relieve stress and trauma. Combined with
yoga nidra meditation we enter a state of
consciousness between waking and sleeping
in which we are deeply relaxed while
fully conscious. Namaste!)