FOOD OF THE GODS
A SLICE OF LIFE
The Family -
around whose tables
rich fare has been offered
- much exchanged.
Allah made poetry a
Cheap thing to buy, and
A simple thing to understand
So that all men might
Profit from it.
For FOOD OF THE GODS
All poetry should be read aloud.
The symbolism and often used poetic license
is solely to emphasise the underlying fact.
It adds poignancy, pungency and
flavour to the dish.
Tell me, wise Counselor
How do I go?
Is my ultimate self
From this frail flesh
Do I dissolve with it
Never to know
Any answer at all
Pass thru the dark hall
Of the ancient mystery
To implacable death
Of either Life Or Death?
Or do I go, Thou Comforter
Conscious of Thee still
And of mine own self
Into that mystery
And with willing heart
Cease to draw breath
Tell me dear Counselor
Make poetry of it - Why not indeed!
Tell me I pray
That I go, not defenseless
Into that last day
That I may go
Singing thy grace
Into the brighter day
So many people see nothing beyond - nothing at all!
As New Zealand poet A.R.D. Fairbairn said -
No doubt with an enigmatic smile
'Life without hope -
If indeed there be nothing on the far side of death - well then -
nothing is lost!; but with faith, the years of waiting are tinged - rose
purple and gold with hope.
But think more deeply on this.
What if the teaching is right - is true?
That the belief itself is a positive mental instrument, that in itself
opens a door; creates a reality. Belief, so much more than words becomes
the open door to immortality - What then indeed!
What if even Belief is not the absolute essential?
What if, as surely Eve plainly saw in the symbolic tale, the immortal
component of the human spirit is our genetic inheritance from her; is the
Thing that is evolving?
Belief, acceptance, understanding - these positive attitudes enable
the immature - still evolving human spirit to better Knowledge of its power,
and is the source of our ofttimes visions of its own immortal capacity.
What if our vision, our will, our own sudden understanding opens
that door into the human mind which gives access to the better life.
What then, indeed.
Listen: the wind in these tall trees
Far inland, sings of distant seas
Loud clear and sweet thru head and heart
Far inland, swells the distant sea
Unseen deep in the heart of me
The slow soft sweep of surf on sand
The strong roar of a rising sea
Surge and flow thru the heart of me
The full tides rage on iron shore
Within I feel the crashing roar
Of deep seas restless waters
Flooding and tearing my spirit
Strong surge and flood of living sea
This song I hear amongst these trees
Strong swelling song of surging sea
Is loud on this deep forest breeze
Dear God, the mighty surge of sea
How these great waves of loved sea sound
Storming the very soul of me
Through mighty forest gird me round
Talking these things over
With the loved one, we see
Most beautiful and clear
The old sweet vision, ever dear
And which men call Eternity
Tis but Creations primal dream
Fulfilled - made perfect clear to me
From Alpha to Omega
The Way, plain, strait and clear to see
Our brief day is spirit singing
The wordless song upon the way
Deep stream of all created things
Rich in bright mists of beauty lay
A blazoned Splendour of the Dream
Revealed the living glory seen
The Work complete perfect and right
Rich in Immortal Dreamers sight
Yea Lord, Thy work complete
All finished and all good.
When in the early dreaming
The sere lands bare
The vast seas empty
No life found there
The creative Thing
With infinite longing
Bethought in the dreaming
A living being
Shaped word in formless time
Visioned purpose in clay
Reshaped some plangent slime
Moulded that clay sublime
Dreamed of a flesh, a frame
To house bright spirit
That in sometime, long visioned
Might share His name
Sing then, thou spirit
That your living clay - the same
He moulded from the dust
Can sing, and live, and rich endowed
With spirit praise His name.
There is, I often see
Another, somewhat wiser self
Lives watchful, seemingly
At some little distance, and
Somewhat apart from me.
Observes all, and often
Speaks a word - unheard
But always understood
And that word
Ever clearly for my good.
Sometimes a warning
No! Not so!
But more often
A clear guidance
Of the way that I should go.
I trust Him
Day after day
He sees - before I do,
The better way.
The Final Solution
My trust is great
But can my trust endure
This pitiless pursuit
This grim remorseless hate?
Can I endure when caught and pent
In brutal ghetto, or death cell
The lash, the pitiless contempt
Of all our human good or ill
The village mayor who trembling calls
The dreaded lists of those to go
Leave all - all love - all life - all dream
How keep my faith in that doomed stream
Oh pity Lord, our dark humanity.
My faith dies: such desolation
I am by my God forsaken
Where, God of Israel
Where God, thy salvation?
Denied all hope
Oh desolate my soul,
Into the mire of shameful death
I trembling walk.
Millions must surely have thus died - bereft of all hope - and despairing
in such extremity crying from the heart, as Christ himself cried upon that
cross 'my God, my God - why hast thou forsaken me'.
Some walked those last few steps still secure in their faith for
faith is greater than death.
And some, knowing neither the despair of faith denied, nor the glory
of constant faith, died without understanding of that mystery, each in
his own way.
The human spirit who departs this life, whatever the way, crying
from the failing heart 'Father into thy hands I Commend my spirit' has
a surety of life still before him.
Here is a vision of the world I see
It treats of all
With equal charity
Sees all mankind
Destined in times to be
But one in all, as one humanity
Sure as the steadfast stars we see above
We vision life, clear with the purpose of
Creations strong and unrelenting love
Tho bright the fires that light the stars above
Fierce dazzling incandescent glows
The pure Shekinah of Creative love.
What mystery that our human eyes can see
Can vision and can dream
Such thoughts of Thee.
Life tells me clear that this can only be
We are all children of God, and it seems possible that we are evolving
toward a clear unambiguous understanding of such kinship- Perhaps, millions
of years, but surely!
Because the thing I am
My spirit Is,
Near Kin to Thee.
Time Was - to be.
Yes, once the thing
That we call Time
Lay dreaming in tomorrow.
From there to bring
The fruits of all our dreams.
And all our sorrow
All that we sowed, so unconcerned
To ripen some tomorrow.
Tis in the fleeting now
We sow the seeds
That flower in tomorrows deeds
Today, the fruit that we enjoy
Or bitterly regret
In our blind human way
For our own good or ill
Into the dim halls of yesterday
Roger Bacon, philosopher of the 14th century, was reputed to have a
'brazen' i.e. brass head, which he consulted for advice. His servant reported
to him one morning that the head had spoken:
Fade those tomorrows
Which for a brief awhile
We called today
But now are gone
Ah God the mystery
Of the transient moments
Which so transform tomorrow
Into this fateful day
Then thru the dreaming nights
With all their joy or sorrow
Just fade away.
'Time is; Time was; Time past' then fell to the floor in fragments
- such a burst of words clearly too much for it.
Fables of such wise heads, and of never failing jugs of wine or milk
or of Genie imprisoned in bottles or lamps were common in those days. Lotto
replaces them in ours!
And humanity still, in spite of 'yesterdays seven thousand years'
of dreadful example, employs the transient moments of today to sow the
seeds of tomorrows tumult and dismay.
Wise the man who seeds his tomorrow with peace and plenty.
What is the radiance we feel
So quiet, so steadfast there
Mystery of love
Such only sensed
In deepest contemplation
And in prayer
Ultimate me -
It speaks most clear
The life we share
In the deep silence
Too often our prayer, our meditations, are of intercession, of pleading
the gift of spirit or our ever present needs.
The pure quiet
Of contemplative prayer.
But It is revealed only in that deep silent rest when the mind is
still; when, without thought we feel the simple unity of all things; in
the calm observation of beauty in its myriad forms; sometimes in the peace
of exhaustion when all our resources are defeated and we rest wordless,
some little place beyond the self.
The Shekinah is forever beyond human comprehension.
The Glory always the Gift of Spirit. Words obscure the vision; thought
clouds the way; ritual is a veil beyond which we cannot see.
Only in the quiet of spirit can we ever perceive that which we are.
The Golden Flower blossoms only in the deep quiet.
It is a great vanity to seek it beyond the self.
The similarities confound!
We were, and not so long ago
Blood brothers to the animals
The difference, is now profound.
Eyes - the same bright knowing eye
A glimpse of brotherhood shines there
We share its magic gift of sight,
Its light of mind, is light we share.
The nose in all, Convenient
Tho size and shape are different
Above the common mouth, and find
The ears are clearly similar
Though oddly modified in kind.
But seen in all with clear intent
The lordly head is patterned plain
In man, ant, ape and elephant.
On land, in air, or in the sea
Insect or fish or bird in flight
There's infinite variety
The wonder ever our delight.
Our feathered friends have modified
Fingers to feathers and fine quills
The ever present useful mouth
Now cleverly designed as bills.
And marvelously different
As by their far ancestral right
Declare their ancient heritage
In the joyous ecstasy of flight.
And the strange sleek fish family
From whence thru time so much has sprung
With diligence transmogrified
The gills to function for the lung.
So beautiful the seas strange life
So rich in bright variety
Such teeming wonder in the life
And death, of His most ancient sea.
With countless kind we share the gut
In every kind its patterned on
The ancient indispensable
So useful common aqueduct.
Life shares the generative parts
But only man transmutes
His generative powers
To foster his creative arts.
But scarcely had one moment passed
On that vast clock that ticks the time
The ages of this worlds slow rhyme
A quantum leap!
And all was changed!
The human race left them behind
Mans old instinctive brain transformed
Into a new creative mind.
It was the forebrain suffered change
A dispensation for new man?
Or a mutation rare and strange
In evolutions ageless plan.
The cortex blossomed - Golden Flower
Reshaped the low browed cranium
Fired the cabined soul of man
With new creative questing power.
And since that far decisive day
Surely in Eden's fabled land
The gifted spirit has with grace
Inspired mans creative hand.
Tis this has made each human being
There is no possible doubt that our bodies have developed through the
long journey of evolution as has all other life.
Surely with deep divine intent
Despite our common heritage
Made man so very different
And separate from them.
The Hebrew creation story is a symbolic revelation, astonishing in
its perception of the emergence of mans creative spiritual consciousness.
As to the thing creation is evolving into in the long quiet reaches
of eternity lying before us - no man knows!
Yet we are ancestor to it.
A vital part of the finished work.
The Immigrant Dreaming
How the heart longs
In these austere brown pastures
To see, to walk, again
Those hills of hearts delight
And sleeps sweet pain
To feel, beneath my feet
The springing turf
Of those far hills again.
Feel the fresh wind that captures
Cold of her deep snows
And stirs the heart to raptures
On the fresh green hills one knows.
Her clear sweet streams
Mind stuff of dreams - of pain
And now - but now - not ever
To be known of me again.
For now, despite such dreams
My restless feet move on
Seek out the red soil plain
The level wide horizon
The living quiet
Lone miles of bush; the benison
Of her velvet silent night.
True that one dreams of home
Move out into the country, and the country either claims one, or drives
one back to the city.
In unguarded hours of night
But through the living day
This dry brown land
Is where I choose to roam
This is my chosen way
This now the deep loved home.
Which is a pity.
There are hundreds of small towns, hamlets scattered through the
agricultural lands of this country and all too many of them are losing
schools, hospitals, post offices, police and a host of other social agencies
as the human numbers dwindle. Yet they offer a very fair lifestyle to the
people of independent outlook.
Of special loss to the country is the closure of rail services -
a veritable life line not only for the people of railway towns but of the
Most of such loss is due to the growing obsolescence of services.
Modernised, and this at no impossible expense the existing rail network
would keep scores of towns alive and attract new residents appreciative
of very low cost homes, low rates and a good safe and quiet lifestyle.
Such the immigrant - he has found the good life indeed.
How we limp upon the way
One crutch - hope
The other - faith
And lo, I find, to my dismay
In the grip of the faithful crutch,
The cause of deep unrest this day.
The man Christ - was carpenter
I should, I guess,
See him about that splinter
And my souls distress.
So often does that silent voice
Grant understanding, ease the pain
And gently smooth the course
Of this days discontent
Grant peace again
And the fullness
Of the moment
I am Me
And through me
Such a glory
That I am
And Thou with me
I well may be
Sum of all time past
And seed of all
The future that may be
The tide is full
Am One with Thee.
The temple bells toll daily
Intone the prayer of ages
Om mane padme hum.
The prayer of all ages rises still
From cottage and cathedral
Peace in our time oh Lord
The cruel hunger of this world
Disease of flesh and spirit
The evil waste and pain
And wars most brutal gain
Mock all our prayers
Neither East nor West are yet
At peace with Thee
Nor mans spirit
The grim years stretch ahead
What hope dear Lord for peace
Until each errant soul seek thee.
Glenwood Oct 94
The walled garden of Zanadu was created by Kublai Khan grandson
of the mighty Mongol conqueror of the 12th century.
Zanadu in a
|Once more in time
The vision gleams
The splendid dreams
The pleasure domes
The caves of ice
The wonders of the Khans devise.
built the famed
|But now tis memory must suffice
Of all that Beauty
All things devised were fair and well
Within the deep romantic spell
Of lovely Zanadu.
|Enchanted land and mystical
Drifts on scented air
A music so divinely fair
As never since was ever played
By troubadour or singing maid.
|The river springs
in full power
|I see it still
The sacred river
Bursting from the secret space
Beneath the hill;
All the wonder, and the thunder
In that sacred holy place
All the turmoil of the fountain
The river, and the holy mountain
|I see as meet
The fabled gardens scented sweet
Great banks of flowers
And flocks of coloured singing birds
Beguile the languid hours
With beauty by the day
|And by night.
||The night bird sings his lay
Thru languorous night
And all these lovely things
Are Kublai Khans delight
||I see the wondrous caves of ice
The meadows rich with herb and spice
The mighty wall he raised
To mark the bounds
Of all his scented flower grounds
The vineyards and the hills
All laved by cooling Rills
|There is a
damsel with a
|Amid the flowering beauty there,
A damsel with a dulcimer
Calling and calling for her lover
He of the flashing, loving eye
He of the floating hair
Her lover, now is lost to her.
|Sad, sad, the damsels song
The hearts of all who heard
Oh desolate that lonely soul
Such was the sad sweet song she played
That all who heard her felt her pain
And sorrowed with the grieving maid.
|Her lover, exiled
to Mt Abora
in Ethiopia on
the far side of the
|To all did her sweet song beget
A vision of her Warrior
On whom her grieving heart is set
Cast out and unforgiven still
Alone on Mount Aboras hill.
|The Warrior -
warn his Khan
of a fate.
|' Twas he cried to the Khan
The tumult of this rushing stream
Portends thy fate!
Portends a knocking at thy gate
That shall diminish Thee
And shall destroy thy dream.
|The man from
|Unknown, from Porlock
Comes the man
Who fated, knocks upon thy door
That knock shall be
Great harm to Thee
Beware - Beware
Thou mighty Kublai Khan.
|The damsel calls
in vain for
|Again I saw
The damsel with her dulcimer
And heard her sad refrain
Loves oldest sweetest song
Pleading and calling in vain
Her lover to her arms again
|The Khan tries
in vain to
For he on swords keen edge hath fed
Fearful the Khan
Has willed him dead.
all its beauty
There be Seven
Shall that lover her surprise
Nor passion kiss her lovely eyes
Nor gentle kiss upon her brow
Nor kiss her gentle loving hand
For he has, proudly, entered now
The Warrior Gate; and stands
At peace, within the Promised Land.
|Now he on honey dew hath fed
And Amaranths immortal flower
And feasting thus this holy hour
Is welcomed into Paradise.
|Fate; in the
person of the
|There beats that fateful KNOCK
This time upon my door.
Again the vision is no more
My spirit turns in sorrow to
My home, again, from Zanadu
And burns with pain.
to the real
|Sore is my souls disquiet
To find, this deep enchanted night
Myself in Porlock once again.
|The greater love,
the greater pain.
|And Zanadu is gone from me
The years have leveled all again
But still my heart is weeping for
The Damsel with the Dulcimer
Singing and calling in her pain
Her lover to her side again
Singing and willing all in vain
To her soft breast again.
||° ° ° ° °
||Why tho, when vision clearly seen
Why, why, do Porlock's little men
Upon the souls most fragile screen
To shatter and destroy
The splendid dream.
His empire extended from the Arctic Sea, throughout almost all Asia,
into Ethiopia, in Northern Africa.
Mount Abora, the place so close to the heart of the damsel with the
dulcimer, was one of the Khan's far flung outposts in Ethiopia.
Zanadu, enclosing several square miles of fertile ground, hill and
dale, river, lakes, forest and verdant fields, were a marvel of the world.
The Khan commanded the services of the best artisans and foresters
of his extensive empire to develop and maintain the great fields of scented
and flowering plants and trees. Birds and animals from many countries were
acclimatised there, architects and builders fashioned beautiful buildings,
chalets, pavilions, museums, all of most beautiful design, and for every
The gardens were walled, one of those characteristic Chinese walls,
beauty and purpose married in delightful harmony, and from within a huge
cave beneath a hill within the garden the great bursting forth of the subterranean
fountain spring, a natural marvel giving birth to the river, which after
flowing through the garden, disappeared into yet another underground cavern.
Marco Polo wrote of having visited the Khan's garden. Several contemporary
travelers also wrote of Zanadu, all speaking in glowing terms of the wonders
It is very likely that Coleridge, had been reading the vivid description
of Zanadu as seen by Chas. Purchase, and, lulled by the spirit of some
companionable laudanum, created his evocative poem, only to be returned
to the humdrum of English country life by that man from Porlock.
Kublai Khan's wonderful garden is now no more, but the site is known
by the huge underground fountain, and the cavern which the flowing waters
have created. Some scholars think that Seneca, the tutor of the Roman Emperor
Nero, referred to the fountain in one of his works, as being a great marvel,
nearly a thousand years before the Khan designed his fabulous gardens around
Always I think of the sea
The roar and the wash of it
And the fierce threat of it
The spray and the spume of it
And the weight of the wind on it
And the flood and the wreck of it
And the power it has over me
The year when the storm drove the sea
Over the dunes and the shore
And its wild ravening calmed
Only at Mothers plea
Right at our door
Lord, how I loved that sea
This, after my birth - was my first miracle.
So great the miracle there
The day, the moment,
That the great sea calmed
At my Mothers prayer
We were on holiday, in a beach "bach" and I a child.
A heavy storm had driven the sea on a high tide over the dunes and
the road. Many homes along the coast had lost their fences and gardens,
but Mother refused to leave, having faith that she would not be harmed.
Mother believed that those who abide in the house of the Lord would dwell
in the shadow of his wing.
And so it was: the sea breached the road and the fence, but stopped
- right at our door.
I well remember the long curds of sea wrack and foam, the damage
and the threat, but above all I remember my Mothers faith greater by far
than the power of the seas.
He who dwells in the sacred place of the Most High shall abide in
the shadow of his wing.
Isn't it Queer
Yes it is Queer
Some of its far away.
Some of it near
Some of its in
Some of its out
Some of it turns
Some twists about
Queer is it not
Some round about
Some upside down
Some inside out
Some of its wriggly
Some topsy turvey
Some of its crinkly
Some of its curly
Some of it jiggles
Some skips all about
Some never stays home
Some never goes out
But this is the queerest
It makes my knees shiver
Is none of us ever,
Ever or Ever
Will EVER be able
To find it out
We never will know
What its all about.
Folly, Frenzy and Fear, those Careless are
The fates that mould our destinies, and shape
The grave dishonesties, deceits, that mar
Our work, our very loves, our art
Stir the dark anxieties, the mortal pains
The dark and deadly pride that stains
The living dying heart.
We mime the random measure of their art
Act out the torment of their aimless play
Suffer all things with numb unfeeling heart
The less their willful torment day by day
Or wanton, toss to waste our life in play.
Only that man,
Who steadfast stands apart
And cries his manhood, cries aloud - I AM
Will be free of such dire fates
Only thus be saved,
Be his own man.
The Myriad Names of God
It has long been said
And they who said - long dead
Those thousand years long gone
Thy names are numberless
And every name
A living song,
Praise of Thee.
Thy names are myriad
As all men image Thee
Each in his love or folly
Each in his own degree.
And as we must have Name
Internationally, the concept of One World, and United Nations, is at
last spoken of, and will one day be realised. And it seems to me that the
concept of One creative spirit is also felt by most of the worlds peoples,
For Saints exultant Joy
Or bitter souls sad shame
How sweet our peace will be
When all the world
Crying the hearts sore need
For all have need of Thee
Thru East and West
All colour and all creed
Cry the One Name "Father"
And all find peace in Thee.
That all should feel the influence of that creative spirit is the
only firm hope - faith in our common humanity, uniting all people and ensuring
the promised one thousand years of peace.
I believe that the race will reach a new level of consciousness in
that thousand years and direct our destiny for aeons of time in a future
so new, so strange so powerful as to indeed 'have dominion over all things';
this including our own psyche and the remarkable - wonderful development
of the presently unrealised capacities of the human mind.
Drought and Rain
It seems not right
That Thy rains fall
These dry days out at sea
Here, where the hot sun sears
Is where the rain should be.
This dry crazed plain
Once fresh, once green
A fruitful field of grain
These thirsting fields cry out
For the good rain again
Thine are the wisdom's
Tis Thou maintain
The fruitful earth
The waters and rain
Teach us thy children Lord
The ways to heal the fruitful plain
To sweetly store the rain
In clear and precious running streams
Restore the waters and the land
To beauty and to health again.
Vain, Vain to strain
After great faith
Such faith is won
Only in deep simplicity
The lesson is so clear
We must indeed
Be as children
That sweet and simple trust
Father, in Thee.
Our children are still fighting an old enemy - the cold spirit, deadened
by intellectual pride.
And a relatively new enemy; the excesses of the age of plenty.
It is easy to say 'We need no faith - no God' - when the belly is
full; Cheerfully killing body and soul with indulgence and excess of every
Easy to say 'No need for God' because some thinkers have some understanding
of some natural laws:
Easy to deny faith when we reflect on the agonised history of religious
All to easy to be swayed by the intellectual hedonism of the Universities
and the mechanistic disciplines of education oriented to commerce and industry.
And yet, millions enrich life with faith
Millions enrich life with spiritual insight
Millions enrich life with responsive prayer
Millions enrich life with meditation
Millions have the wonderful 'Thou and I' experience
Millions see the Way - clear straight and plain
Surely they chose the better way.
Poem oft tells more than poet knew
And time confirms that this is true
Mayhap of all - of me and you
Our visions are but dimly seen
Who can well tell the fleeting dream.
But every soul born to this earth
Has inner sense of his life's worth
This is the artists hidden goal
To make us feel our own true soul.
That each his own true spirit find
Behind every human activity there is a hidden purpose - this beyond
Life itself. To understand that purpose, and to pursue it is the only true
This is the unsearched goal of mind
Of poetry and of all art
All lovely things, life's better part
Teach love - our true our inmost heart.
The Koran teaches well
That there be Seven Doors
That lead men into Hell
Our better self to lose.
Such bitter hells
That we for ourselves
Do obstinately Choose
Seven Deadly sins
Open dark portals wide
To usher in all willing,
The swelling human tide.
The seven are well known
The Seven Deadly Sins. Each has its flourishing branch in the Tree of
Life, as do the Seven Virtues; The seven days of the week, analogue of
the Seven symbolic days of Creation; The Seven Articles of the Lords prayer;
the seven stages in the life of man.
Well loved by man
And each is well defined
And all corrupt
That which He made to be
Our most delicate
Many festivals are orders of seven days and seven Sabbaticals are
celebrated with a year of Jubilee - an ancient custom which we would be
wise to include in our calendar: and special rules for the usage's of the
Seven Names of God; that which the West uses is the modern form of Jehovah,
which has seven letters. Millions of the worlds peoples spoke of God as
'the Seven' rather than profanely use His Name.
And then the Seven Champions of Christendom and the Seven Sisters
- which we call the Pleiades, for centuries, the navigation lights of the
coast hugging ships of the Old World; and of course 'the Seven Seas', and
the Seven Great Continents.
The Koran states that there are Seven Heavens, and Seven Portals
into Hell, and the Revelation of St John; in good company with other Cabalistic
books uses the significant Seven to mark and measure the cosmic events
of the mighty drama of the end of our Times.
And there were (and possibly are still) the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus,
the Seven Wise Masters, and once the Seven Great Avatars, though the New
Age has produced a plethora of Channelled Avatars, and there is a strong
possibility that the divine potency of the modern Avatar has become diluted
amongst such numbers.
Seven is primarily in certain circles composed of four and three,
a powerful combination of two powerful numbers though all have their own
powers, and he is wise who masters the mysteries enshrined in them.
Seven is a prime number, and there are Seven Chakras. There are the
Seven Metals of the Alchemists and the Seven Burghers of Calais. The Japanese
have Seven Gods of Good Fortune and Spanish romantics dream of their fabled
land of the Seven Cities.
And what lover has not experienced that Seventh Heaven of Joy?
And we still speak of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and
undoubtedly there are Seven Wonders of our Modern
World, of which I will nominate Borghum's magnificent sculptures
of the first four presidents of the U.S.A. on the face of Mt Rushmore in
South Dakota as one. Other suggestions welcomed!
Rome is built on The Seven Hills; and the Seven Year Itch is a sad
affliction of all men.
And there are seven basic notes of music and the seven lovely colours
of the rainbow and the Seven Pillars of Wisdom, and, speaking of wisdom
we recall Christ's strong injunction;
'To forgive, not seven times, but seventy.'
And His Seven Utterances whilst on the Cross.
'Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.'
'Today thou shalt be with me in Paradise.'
'Woman behold thy Son, Behold thy Mother.'
'My God, my God why hast thou forsaken me.'
'Father, into thy hand I commend my spirit.'
So what then are these Seven Deadly Sins, known to peoples of every
race and of all times?
They are: Pride; Anger; Envy; Lust; Avarice; Sloth; and Gluttony.
And of them, Pride is the greatest.
Forgive this latest lapse
Attention wanders ofttimes
When the memory returns
So forgive me wandering when
Contemplating the mystery
You find me dreaming
Ofttimes - not of Thee
We - Thou and I
Know well that memory
The hearts deep recollection
Of times bright yesterday
Too often for my peace I find
That dear companion in my mind
Surely not intruding!
All my waking hours
My heart my thought
My very life with Thee.
So, the Fuhrer is gone!
With Goebbels and the rest
And the Duce
And that dark terror
And the ungentle Samurai
Of the Sun empire
Drawn out to soon
From the dark cloud
Of the sad worlds history.
Gone are the packdogs
Of the stormtroopers
And the wolfpacks of the sea
Gone for some restless year
The hound dogs of our dark humanity.
But Mars is not yet dead
The weapons stacked behind the door
The lust for power remains
And snarling and snapping at their chains
The grim dogs of war.
Mars is not gone, not dead
His arms piled deep behind the door
Still snarling and straining on their chains
The savage dogs of war.
Such sobering thought!
At this moment
As I stand,
This is the best
That I will ever be!
In such deep need
All men deserve Thy Grace
Do Thou remember me.
Love and Life are all a dream
- Robert Burns
All things have being in dreams
And dreams of dreams
Flaring in the darkness
Of some ancient drifting mind
Perchance we too but dream
And see all round
The creatures of that dream
Feel the sharp urge of pain
Start, breathless with beauty
Only in visionary dream
Ah God how can I plead
For love and gentleness
From eyes and hearts
Whose essence is my dream
Hear voices sing
Loved songs whose every lilt
And cadence is my own
Created in some mocking world
Within my dark, my restless dream
Oh God, how I escape from me?
Then, if courtesy and gentleness
Be phantom friends
Then will be fear and black despair
But phantom foes?
And all the clear tides that ebb and flow
In the bright life
But flow and ebb
Of the lone dark dreamers dream
What then, if birth and death
Be only phantom cues to mark
Only the dream time
Of we who draw breath
He dreams, we dream, and such
Is the rich mystery of the dream
Ringing the Cosmos
Till heavens brightest stars
Pleiades and the far Pole star
Dim winking in the purple night
Breath sweep revolve and swing
Timeless in deep enchanted dream
Till the bright full round of fancy
And of whim in a vast dreamtime
Till one awakes, and dazed with sleep
Recalls with smiling thought
The mystery and the magic of his dream
Unknowing that his wakening
Has plunged untold hearts
And worlds and times
In Blackest Ruin.
' We are such stuff
As dreams are made on.'
Love is our fullest richest gain
And I would dare this life again
Should such love be granted
Love tempers all loves sorrow
If reincarnation is the thing - we have it seems no choice as to when
where or who we make a replay; If the cozy immortality of the Christian
church is the thing, there will be strange fellow travelers in heaven:
and who know to which of the Seven Heavens he is destined or whether he
will be admitted to Valhalla? All we know is that intimatons of immortality
have enlightened life for countless millions since life began; and that
the soulless intellectualism of our day has deprived millions of the better
life, the life strengthened and enriched by faith.
Only for love will I endure
Another stern tomorrow.
Our choice! But I for one, want nothing of it unless it be tempered
with plain compassionate love.
The voiceless song we hear
It rises strong, serene and clear
Transforms the ordinary day
Through the bright ecstatic year.
There is so much in this rich life!
Birdsong - the sweet wonder of flowers - the patterned beauty of
- the wonder of fresh water - the glory of night skies
- the wonder of the sea - of its infinite moods and movement
- of the fresh wind - of the cool early morning
- the peaceful flow of the great rivers - or their raging might -
the wonder of birth
- the loveliness of babies - the strength of good men and women
- the world is full of beauty and wonder.
Another year - another age
And each I thought the last
To soothe the spirit
To gently ease the past
The memories flare
They never dim
In spite of all my prayer
Remembrance of the happy years
Obscures my vision of
My faith in Him.
Magnolia Street - Southport 1991
Sweet commonsense observes
Where is much faith there is no fear
So in the hope that faith will hold
Through all our grief's
Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are paramount abilities.
The slogan 'Press on' has solved and will always solve the problems
of the human race.
Calvin Coolidge 30th President of the U.S.A.
There is a calm, a low and murmurous surf
Beating and curling on warm and golden sand
Silent and dark the trees that line the turf
Of the low dunes where sage green grasses bend
Sea wears her beautiful blue dress
Displayed in sweetest calm simplicity
And quiet the day and still and quiet the sea
All this for you my dearest love, and me
This surely is the Lotus flower land
To sleep and dream with you on golden sand
To play and rest in peace
To wake, to love, and then to sleep again
Yes there are storm wracked seas
And far and distant strands
Where great ships ply their trades
And many far and foreign lands
And fishing fleets - a fantasy
Of men and boats that throng
Far havens and the sea miles long
And many thousand islands of the sea
And there are great wonders
A bright and teeming life
Rich treasure of caverns
Cliffs and populous plains
Hid in the deep waters
Of the seas great mains
But none, not one of these distress
This gentle seas most beautiful blue dress
Nor the still peace, my dearest love
Which we this day
And in this place possess
Even an Australian may be tempted to say it in Haiku.
True we have no national tradition; but - we are human; we may talk
little of Zen, but - we are on the Way; we too are intrigued by the endless
contradictions of fate; and may be entranced by the endless nuances of
beauty. We too enjoy the natural life about us, and enjoy the endless complexities
of the human condition.
We too have keen eyes for beauty, of form and of character, knowing
well that both life and beauty may sometimes be flawed.
Haiku and our western poetry are one in bringing Order and Beauty
into our literature and thus into our lives.
This the Haiku does most simply yet with delightful art. Be not too
critical of honest endeavour.
Haiku is a traditional art form and uses some chosen fragment of
living experience for its power.
The form uses no rhyme, but a subtle rhythm of meanings, rather than
mere words; some tiny observation of life and our sometimes confusing destinies
and all this contained within a mere seventeen syllables.
As children, Father challenged us to define 'nothing'. The perplexities
challenge me to this day. One of the early associations which have led
me to Eastern meditation and so to Haiku.
° ° ° ° °
In the silence, sought nothing
The Golden Lotus flowered there
° ° ° ° °
Such truth is our real existence
° ° ° ° °
Emptiness is not nothingness
What hard edge
That emptiness implies
° ° ° ° °
How define nothing?
Such is great vanity
He is, His work is all
° ° ° ° °
Even the Cold Garden
Leaves me in doubt of nothing
Nothing! Not there!
° ° ° ° °
I sought to find nothing
Found nothing nowhere
No nothing anywhere
° ° ° ° °
Nothing demands a something
To define it
Full circle - snake eats tail
° ° ° ° °
The gulfs between the stars
Are not nothingness
Are only separation
° ° ° ° °
'It is nothing' she said
'Nothing?' he said
'They talk of nothing' they said
° ° ° ° °
The cold Garden
Is austerely beautiful
No hint of nothing there -
° ° ° ° °
Art has its mission
Making clear to the world
Love, order and beauty
° ° ° ° °
A new Age dawns
New hopes and times await us
But, the same human face
° ° ° ° °
The lark salutes the sun
Singing the sweet joy of life
What shame few hear
° ° ° ° °
We enter life haphazardly
Live so so
Have little choice leaving
° ° ° ° °
The loved one gone
Such unwanted circumstance
What waste of love and joy
° ° ° ° °
They are so young
So beautiful - what pity
The afflictions of age
° ° ° ° °
This old lady alone, man gone
- children scattered far
Love old - love cold
° ° ° ° °
A spring in the desert
Shade and a handful of dates
Ah, these are life
° ° ° ° °
Yes, Life is good
Love savours it
But only faith and toil grant it
° ° ° ° °
Forget your cares
They will scarce survive your fears
Ah, the Moon - the flowers
° ° ° ° °
This age grows old
The new millennium dawns
But the same moon and sun
° ° ° ° °
All gods, ancient or new
Are the same
Are they the vision - or a dream
° ° ° ° °
All humanity exposed
With syllables seventeen
° ° ° ° °
The Zen master cares not
He has Satori
So learn. Its up to you
° ° ° ° °
Cogito ergo sum
Bright dream of this life
But after Death - what then
° ° ° ° °
Shades above, shades below
Shades on the wall
What then of the Fire - of Thee
° ° ° ° °
We must accept
But with necessary exceptions
° ° ° ° °
That angry space between us
Is pain of loss
Pain of separation
° ° ° ° °
Those wondrous Haiku syllables
It is, we are, that is all
° ° ° ° °
New moon, one star beside
Hosts age down here, pass away
° ° ° ° °
Lot fled the wrath of Sodom
When safe enjoyed
Incest with his daughters
° ° ° ° °
Sedate and calm, Moon mocks
The bright lights, the darkness
Of the cities
° ° ° ° °
Gold moon in Autumn sky
Twice waned since Easter
Gold bright for Wiggen night
° ° ° ° °
Lord into Thy hands
I commend my spirit
As in Life so in Death
° ° ° ° °
Inland, great seas died
Distilled their waters
Made living fire, made Opal.
° ° ° ° °
How sweet the scents and sounds
Of youths green spring,
Which the rich autumnal years
Can never make sweet again.
Oh tender years of youths
Keen joy and pain
Which of the swift fulfilling years
Can waken these again.
Only regrets remain
And ghosts of a life's endeavour
And memories such as these are worth
No more than yesterdays weather.
But I err; one thing at least survives
From youths green years;
A faith in life made stronger by
Long years of baseless fears.
The Dry Brown Land
Time ground, relentless, mountain chains
Time raked these rock hard gibber plains
Time dried the ancient inland seas
Time tilled once fertile lands to these
And in the shaping
With generous hand
Scattered rich treasure
Thru the dry red land
Time sifted fire and sifted sand
Time gouged these chasms drained these lands
Time baked brick red the deep rich soil
Time is destroyer - Time the foil.
Rich the jewels time buried there
Pure Opal fire, most precious, rare
Diamond white and ruby red
Treasure in hidden river bed
Great wealth in clays and river sands
The dark coals deep in layered bands
Time is red plain - Time is river
Time creator - Time rich giver
Time burned forest hill and plain
Time will green them all again
Deep hidden in her ancient streams
Elusive hopes and richest dreams
Hid deep in plain and mountain fold
Reefs, rivers and streams and fields of gold
Time shaped these hills, time shaped this plain
Time will renew this land again
Time will outlive the race of men
Time claim these hills, these seas again.
We find a benediction
In the simple act of prayer
The balm of peace
And a release
From the conflict
And the stressful care
Of the days unrest.
This is the gift of prayer
The simple grace of prayer
Is peace of mind
A cool sweet cleansing
For our overburdened kind
When stilled the mind makes peace
Prayer is but one of the ways we can access the Godhead within ourselves.
We are indeed all children of God; of the creative life of the Universe
which flows in every living thing. The ways we can access that deep creative
spirit within ourselves is through prayer; meditation, introspection, contemplation;
all ways of thought which quieten the normal tumult of the mind and allow
the still quiet voice of the spirit, wordless indeed, but most clear and
certain, to be heard.
With its deep self in prayer
And there are times - moments or events of great emergency - times
when spirit and body are in danger, when His power is immediate - miraculous
- and great strength flows in a saving grace to meet our desperate need.
When we but still the mind, and listen, that spirit is creative;
it guides, it resolves problems, it is inventive; it has inspired all the
works of our hands through our long history - it acts only for our good.
It is the genesis of Love, of Order, and Beauty in our lives. It
is the only power that can transform Evil.
Every human soul has access to that Godhead, to the guidance, the
power, and the grace of the deep self.
The choice to use it is our own.....
Source of the Dreaming
There is a stillness here
True source of the dreaming
Stillness lies about us.
It is a presence, spirit song
Rich essence of ages
Strong sense of hosts long gone
Here when the mind is still
As the warm air, over the low hills
And the cloak of night
Gold spangled cool in pale moon light
Is a sighing heard
Only in such places
May the listening ear
Such faint lamentation hear
Such sad echo
Of ethereal song be heard
The mourning silence stirred
Faint song indeed, far faint voices
Of sweeter song - of richer years
Sighing of long dead seas
Of winds in long gone forest trees
Windsong sweet scented with flowers
Bee song, and bird, in fertile plains
Sweet waters singing in clear streams
The strong song of generous rains
The rich land sang
Exuberant - Such a song
Rich were the dreams
Of plenty - The song
Ran with the wind in the trees
Flowed with the sun warm breeze
Over deep grassed plain
Over the plenteous seas.
Only in deep stillness
Of the long dead sea
Or on the low worn hills
Of the silent empty land
May echo of the old song
Be heard of man
A sighing - a quiet singing
In the stillness - a mourning
For the dim remembered land.
Karumba men -
Those vast empty spaces which are the silent heart of our island continent,
evoke a sense of place a strange atavistic sensing by day and night, of
life and time.
They know the song
They see and walk the ways
Between our day
And those old days
And the dim world beyond
They will not speak of it
But clear at heart they know
The ancient mystery
The wonder and the awe
The power of that stillness
The living magic
Of the long strange dream.
It is not fear, though some feel such, but is a strong yet delicate
awareness of the great flood of life which has surged through these empty
lands in the ages of its flowering, and through the long days of its slow
Difficult to sense, pushing the four wheel drive along the new hard
roads, though the woman in the passengers seat is surely aware of it and
the awareness of it colours her musings.
Once sensed it is never forgotten, and is the very heart of Aboriginal
Tramping the bush one day
Wet, cold, but well content
Feeling our careful way
Down the steep hill
Rain lashed and rough
But strangely beautiful
We chanced upon that day
A shattered waterfall
Raging into a small
But deep swift swirling pool
That barred awhile our way.
The water raged
Dark cold and deep
Through a narrow cleft
In the solid rock
And we saw where
In that wild splintered broken place
A mighty cedar log
Was caught down there
Trapped in the narrow rock bound wall
Well guarded by the waterfall.
Mighty that log indeed
Trimmed as it was
And nogged for the wild ride
Down the hillside stream
And meant to be
Floated in safety down the hill
To some far cedar cutters mill.
With axe and saw and timberjack
And bar and old world skill
Found felled and trimmed their kill
But somehow - by some chance
Some accident may hap.
They failed despite their skill
To guide it thru that narrow gap.
They lost control of it
Surely someone blundered
And their rich kill
(The millers golden dream)
Lay trapped in that tumultuous stream
Not all their skill
Could set it free
While over it
Those furious waters thundered
Not all their skills could move that tree
And so, unwillingly
With probable cursing
And a deep regret
They let it be
It lies there yet.
We stood, uncaring of the rain
Assessing our chances
Of moving the thing
Into the lower stream again.
One said 'Wait for a dry season
And cut it out with a chainsaw.'
But we all laughed.
A long wait for a dry season
There's three hundred inches
Of rain a year up here.
And getting heavy gear
Down there was beyond all reason.
That iron hard enclosing wall
And the depth and the cold
Of the river and the power
Of the waterfall
Left no possible way
To sling a chain, or stay
The force and flow.
Certain it seemed that we
Would never set that cedar free.
Those early timber men
More expert than we
Would surely have regained their tree
No doubt, they used there then
Their every skill
To rescue their imprisoned kill.
And so, because the rain
Was driving savagely again
With deep regret
We left the beautiful
It lies there still
Trapped in the wild white water still.
Some old time cynic asked
Out of the darkness of his night
'Pray, tell us Saint Augustine
What then is Light?'
And the saint replied
His logic not denied
'What Light is, thou and I
Know full well,
But what it is
Not I, or any man can tell!'
Light, life itself and death
Are full well known by all
Though little understood
By all who draw breath.
The passion we endure
Our spirits strife
To conquer pain
The fleeting doubt
The deep pursuit
Of Grace, sweet goal of Life
The grail of Thy peace
The vision clear
Too often just beyond
The hungry soul
Yet always near.
Forgive me asking
I know the answer
Its a hand I need
Warm and human
That magic touch
Just helps us through.
Yes, that's what I need
A loving, living touch from you
As a better poet than this wrote,
'He has no hands, but our hands
His holy work to do - '
Anyone at anytime can be an instrument; a hand of Grace.
Only of Thou and I
The sweet song sings
Earth air and sea
Sing ever Thee and me.
Quiet gentle strong and free
The oldest sweetest song
Singing of Thee and me
Only of Thee and me.
Sweet wordless joyous bright
Singing of Thou and I
Ever our hearts delight.
Daylong, sweet song
Soft thru night sky
Singing of love
Singing of Thou and I.
Song without words
Old, old, the sweet song
Singing Loves mystery
Singing body and spirit
Singing of Thee and me.
Eve dearest Eve
Sweet Mother of all men
Mother of loved Mary
Mother of Magdalene
Mother of Kings
Mother of peasant and master
Mother of avatars
The hosts that follow after
The blessed and the damned
Saints sinners and sages
The rich inheritance of life's
Sweet flowering ages
Not famine, nor hardship
Nor drought fire or flood
Nor poverty, nor any woe
Nor wars grim lust for blood
Nor mans brutality
No taint of this worlds ill
Has dimmed or tarnished
Eves steadfast loving will
Eden's most precious gift to Eve
From Father of all above
To mans first Mother, Eve
The holy gift of love
Eve out Back
Yes, they will survive
Heart stronger than death
Than drought, flood and fire
And the dry winds breath.
Stronger than errant seasons
The unanswered prayer for rain
Stronger than all misfortune
The strong hearts remain.
Stronger than lonely birth
Than long and lonely days
Stronger than hearts hunger
For other - less harsh ways.
Whence springs such faith, such love
Such true fidelity in deepest need
Ask of the strong warm steadfast heart
Ask spirit - ask the land - oh whence indeed.
The Cats Tale
I am no complacent cat
I surely Felis Catus still
You did not break me
Train me to your will
I came of my own choice to you
And choose, of my own will
To remain with you still
In truth it was your open fire
Dear God of Cats, that cheerful heat
The torment of the rich full scents
On such chill days, of your roast meat
In the hard bitter days
And the long bitter night
Of the great ice ages
I saw your welcome light
The mammoth, and great auroch bear
The sabre toothed tiger
The great and mighty perished there
Died in the great cold of the ice
I sought a peace with you
Desired your fire, your meat
You were the mighty hunter then
And had the fire, so I
Crept for my purposes
To your indifferent feet
I veiled my savage maw
I sheathed my deadly claw
In passive velvet paw
And for my kittens need
I crept inside your door
A rat or so, and a mouse or two
Also came from the cold to you
Each in his creeping furtive way
And these for you, I kept at bay
All through those bitter years
Yes, for your meat, and fire
And safety for my kits
In the warm nest your children made
And you were pleased, in your way
To have the wild thing stay
About your homes and fires
We shared a warm companionship
Through all those bitter years
Surely you pleased my own desires
It pleased my own desire
My kits to share your fire
Your children played with mine
And deeper friendship grew with time
So I am now content to stay
Felis Domesticus to be
I choose to pay my way
Upon the step, sometimes a mouse
Maintains my independent state
Within your house
And now by mutual consent
We be old friends
The wisdom's garnered thru long years
Now inherent in me,
And you are wiser too
And more compassionate
I have great trust in you.
But Felis Catus still at heart
I stay at my own will
And when it pleases me
I will unsheathe my claw
Return to forest and to kill
Live to my own cat law.
Your pet! This cat is not so mild
Your Felis still is Catus wild
January 1st - 2001
Welcome to the promised
1000 years of peace
Two hundred million dead!
Most of them, shamefully
And all by man made war or worse
And all in this last century
Surely the years of Armageddon's curse.
Yet I have heard it said, dead pan
A thousand times at least
The sacred value of one human life
Much dearer to our God is man
Or so they say, than any beast.
Life's sacred, when its you or me
But when it comes to other men
The truth is very plain to see
Be cautious - keep alert
Just watch your sacred fellow man.
For model, look at Uncle Sam
There sure is a God fearing man!
With 36,000 murders
Each year, each one a precious life!
Believe it if you can.
At birth was some Mothers
Loved daughter or loved son
Mothers should surely teach the rule
Thou shalt not kill!
And if not Mother then,
Let's teach it in the school.
Lets teach the Ten Commandments
Simple enough, isn't it, to teach the Ten Commandments!
For our own good
And if parents haven't got the sense
Then surely the schools should.
Secular education is in sad need of revision and the teaching of
personal responsibility for ones own actions is surely a must for all -
not just some of us.
And what are these so old, wise, ten commandments?
They are the absolutes for an orderly compassionate society.
Well worth looking up!
When man the hunter ceased to be
(And builded his cities)
He needed still the Quest
Invented Art - and War
Religion and Philosophy
And Politics and Law
What shame that mans dark history
Betrays his ancient Quest
For Union, lost in Eden Lord
For talking and for walking Lord
With Thee in cool of evening Lord
For Thy rich inward presence Lord
Thy gracious peace, Thy rest.
Grant Lord the Vision, grace to see
Thy radiance, the inward way
Which draws us to the Light
The glow of our lost Eden Lord
The Union of our spirit Lord
Our peace again with Thee.
I conceived this 'Martin Buber' series not long after Hitler and
his kind had been subdued in Europe. A lifetime has flowed under the bridges
since and this series now published for the first time. These few poems
I think speak for Martin Buber.
They were written in my respect for a lovely Jewish lady of my acquaintance.
She was intensely interested in the early struggle for the emerging state
of Israel and Martin Buber was one of her great heroes.
He worked courageously for early reconciliation with Palestine. Had
he lived there would have been earlier settlement, less blood shed - less
bitterness and a lesser heritage of racial hatred.
He worked also for a renewal of faith based on a reformed Judaism,
enlightened by the more mystical traditions of the Hasidic Jews, who saw
more clearly than conventional Judaism, the God as glimpsed by David, Isaiah,
Ezekiel and others with the prophetic eye; the visionary ones who hundreds
of years before his birth, saw the man Jesus Christ as the great pivotal
figure of human history, and saw the deep spiritual awakening of our day,
the hope of untold millions, the fullness of which is yet to be consummated.
It is true most of this worlds peoples live still in the misery of poverty
- of spirit and of personal comfort.
A faith in the goodness of life, such as Martin Buber had, will refresh,
invigorate and strengthen all life, personal and national.
Martin Buber I
There is no contest
Between Thou and I
So clear am I to Thee
And as clear am I of Thee.
Thou art my God
Am well content in Thee
Rest all my confidence
Find all my strength
Between thou and me
Thou art my God
I have no life
No world no work
No hope or plea
Of this worlds wealth
Or bitter woe
Soars exultant, sings
Only of Thou and me.
Martin Buber II
Let my people go
Free them my God
From the stern rigid rod
Of ancient priestly law
Our ancient jealous God
Let my people go
Grant us a release
From the harsh conformity
Which denies us peace
Let my people go
As the King prayed
Above all things
Grant us such understanding
Those warring days
Not for revenge we pray
But in thy grace
Thou guide us this day -
Thou wise councilor
Supplant the priestly law
Stern rituals of
Our peoples God of War
Grant us to build the city
Blessed with Thy peace
Thou God of Israel
Grant us Thy release
And let Thy people go.
Martin Buber III
This is my bitterest winter
Thou lost to me
And all thy people are this day
In darkest need
For deepest loss of Thee.
Thou hast me trapped indeed
Have gravest doubt of Thee
Oh where thy strong right hand
Thy saving grace
In this, thy peoples desperate need.
Do Thou not feel our pain
Our agony to know
That Thou hast cast us off
Again, and yet again
Our hope, our pleas in vain.
Hitler has builded for Moloch
Temples of sacrifice most dread
He garners thy Chosen people
To feed those fires. Our dead
Cry from their ashes for Judgment
But my God, no sign from Thee.
My God My God
In this my darkest hour
Be thou with me.
Martin Buber IV
I stand apart
From all my work
Of all that I have known
And should Thou cease to be
I shall go, bereft
Until the end
Martin Buber V
By the waters of Babylon
We sat down and wept
We mingled our tears
In the Waters of Egypt
Lord, remembering Thee.
And we have wept
In many sad places
Salt tears have flowed
In vain, remembering Thee
Through pogrom and purge.
Now Lord this holocaust
Weeping thy people Lord
We have wept, most bitterly
But Judah is not comforted
Nor Israel at peace.
We weep in Jerusalem.
In vain is the city builded Lord
Martin Buber VI
I am - I stand apart
From all our past
All that I know of Thou
Is in this now.
And when I go
My art - my labour
And my loves
All the wealth
Of mine inheritance
And as a Jew
I leave behind me.
I will go
Beyond all earthly dream
From the long search
And the discipline of Thee.
Just Thou and me
My Lord - my God
Yea, I will go most gladly
Poor human soul
Naked and alone to Thee.
Martin Buber VII
We have been willful
Learning but slowly
Through all our warring years
To walk in peace with Thee.
Grant us this day Thy Grace
From wars brutality and fears.
A turning, we pray
Into a day
Of strong creative peace
Grant Thy people grace
To choose the better way
To work and build
The City, Lord,
Except the Lord build the house
They labour in Vain that build it.
Except the Lord keep the city
The watchman waketh in vain:
Martin Buber VIII
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall
mount up on wings, as eagles, they shall run and not be weary - they shall
walk and not faint.
This is the Joy of life,
To mount the task on wings,
As eagles, and attain the mark
Exultant, spirit sings
And we, not granted eagles wings
We run the appointed race
Not weary - day and night
Refreshed, renewed by Grace.
Lord, task accomplished, Journey done
We walk that last mile firmly
Nor fainting on the way
Thy peace, by grace now won.
This is, the grace of the word
To those who dwell peaceably
In the House of the Lord.
Through the long day
Strength renewed, spirit sustained
Faith ever refreshed
Here on the hallowed way.
Martin Buber IX
In the long search
Thou art no adversary
I have no deep contest
On the long road with Thee.
Never the forced pursuit
In grim contest with Thee
Not ever such grim chase
Of I, my God, of Thee.
There be no contest Lord
Martin Buber X
No call to bend nor bind
So gladly do I, trusting, find
My all in Thee.
My trust in Thee
Buber fled Hitler's Europe in 1938. Relatively safe in Jerusalem he
continued his work for a reformed and liberated Judaism until his death
Is firm - secure
Secure from Europe's bitter hate
But could such easy trust endure
Were I, as they, the victim of
Such bitter fate.
He wrote vigorously of the cultural and social values of Judaism
within the new state of Israel and throughout the Diaspora.
He believed passionately in God as the deep personal reality of the
human spirit, and in humanity as being capable of a deep intimate understanding
with that God.
We are indeed all children of God - simply and naturally.
The beautiful 'Thou and I' experience can be cultivated by all.
This is my last hard question
Honest and just
By very life of spirit
Tis living spirit drives me
To ask of Thee I must.
In myself I find
However deep the plunging
Awesome search of mind.
Plain and clear to me
I ask with that sweet honesty
That I have shared with Thee
All doubts released
And our small conflict ceased
Me certain soon to go
Not knowing, not caring,
The when - or how,
Despite my trust, I have
Strong will to know.
Will I, that deepest hidden I
That am so still before Thee
Will that departing me
Have conscious knowledge
Of my self?
Know still my own true self
When this good life, I flee.
Have faith dear Child
Be certain as you pray
Our fate is not destined
The choices are our own
Along the ageless way.
True, true, dear Child
Invades our time and place.
We still have choice
Of our response,
Our saving grace.
Tears, grief's yes, all sorrows
Love and the thousand joys
We for our own dear selves
Must choose to make or mar
Our own sure tomorrow.
Day after lovely day
Life's greatest challenge; is not what happens: It is our response that
determines the outcomes.
Nights shaded mystery
Tis we must choose the seeds
To flower, with such certainty
In our tomorrows chosen deeds.
Misfortune or great fortune, make or mar according to the ways in
which we accept them.
Here is a most wondrous thing
So think and ponder on it,
The entire universe,
With you and me upon it
All blossomed from one atom
So the herald angels sang
In their first creative hymn
Extrapolated into THIS
At the Big Bang
Where He made all begin.
But yet its not so very odd
Other wondrous things agree
On creations mild simplicity
Note how the simple acorn grows
Into the noble - vast oak tree.
The magic numbers - 1 to 9
With mystic zero. Experts plan
With them to theorise the Universe
Reduced and Unified into
One pregnant, potent single line
Like E = M/C2 !
We used this in our warring strife
Made a somewhat smaller Bang
But generated Death - not life.
And all the magic of
The sweet rich world of sound
Ars Nova - seven simple notes
Make music's miracles profound.
And our alphabet. Its clear
Here is a magic world compressed.
All the worlds wisdom and its folly
By these few vowels
And the consonants expressed.
And colour too!
And mystic world of Light
Magic's of atomies
These pure simplicities
Perform the miracle of sight.
When all is Known and understood
The whole is such a simple place
Simple - but infinitely deep,
And wonderfully good.
All that was, is, yet to be
All is said
In seventeen syllables
Dew is but one of the myriad of tiny beautiful things which be about
us, so common that they are passed by unnoticed by millions.
But, fix but one brilliant drop in sight, then with but slight movements
of the head, bring into view with brilliant crystal purity the seven facets
of the pristine structure of light!
Every dewdrop is a demonstration of the structure of light so simple,
so elegant, so elementary, so clear, that I wonder how it could be missed
through long centuries by those early exploring minds, Euclid, Archimedes
and a thousand others.
Even Michelangelo and Da Vinci wonderful observers and entranced
with colour, missed that clear message.
Edna St. Millay wrote;
'Euclid alone has looked on beauty bare'
Yet Euclid failed to read the lesson of dew.
I wonder if Newton first conceived the theory of the nature of light,
from observing the beautiful colour spectrum of dew, even as he first conceived
the laws of gravitation from the natural simplicity of the fall of an apple.
To this poets mind there is no conflict between the Hebrew creation
myth and the clear evidence of the evolutionary development of life - and
man - on this planet.
The Hebrew myth is clearly symbolical as are the many creation myths
of the many races of mankind, but deals with that miracle the birth of
human self consciousness. To confuse symbols with facts; to pervert parable
into ritual and theology is to deny all power to our minds, and to show
a deadly spiritual disregard of the clear message of Jesus and other great
'The letter kills; the spirit gives life.' All human language is
but a pattern of symbols, built up over millennia for the purpose of expressing
the underlying reality of the human spirit. The denial of that spirit is
That the Hebrew myth (and others) speak of creation as HE - as God
- has the same meaning as the Amerindian 'Great Spirit', or the Cosmic
eggs or turtles of many other races. It is a symbol of the indefinable
Men of every race and time have devised such symbols - usually personified
in human form with human speech with all its gross limitations, all to
satisfy the human passion to explain the inexplicable; to know that which
can never be known.
Through all our history it is our priests and poets who have framed
and preserved our symbolic myths, the shadowy archetypes of the human psyche.
In our day some scientists - have devised their own creation myth.
They call it the 'Big Bang'. Later ages of men will but list the myth with
those other but more ancient myths of creation. And they - in their turn
will add their gods to the pantheon of speculation.
The mystery of creation will never be solved - it will be ever the
subject of imagination and resolve ever into myth. To resolve 'everything'
into the 'Theory of Everything' as sought by some physicists is the ultimate
When I am gone,
I hope, the fire
My children dear
My last desire.
I would but sadly
Surrender my flesh
Well loved, though now old
To the slow decay
The worm and the cold.
But I will go
Most gladly go
Thru the bright fire
And last desire.
And note I trust
The grey ash goes
To feed a rose.
That my souls release
That most lovely rose
My favourite, and the worlds,
Papa Meilland's 'Peace'