Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Willing One


Mary, the willing one.
Willing to bear the child,
willing to bear his death.
Showing us the way,
who now bear the child
into the world.
Mary, who echoed the words
on Sinai, "I am".
Mary invites us to join voice,
the great "I am".
We join her on her journey
to the nascent town,
the least of Judea.
We follow her to the nascent space,
the least of within our hearts,
to the sweet suffering
which comes only from
loving and knowing;
to birth a new child
a new heart;
a new creation.
Blessings to you Mary,
for answering Love's call.



Theotokos icon image from "A Reader's Guide to Orthodox Icons" http://iconreader.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/the-theotokos-of-the-sign-icon/



Saturday, November 12, 2011

Entitlements

The question isn't why the poor feel "entitled", as though a living wage is an entitlement. The question is why the powers feel entitled to make the poor suffer for their pleasure.



Friday, November 4, 2011

Poverty

I am left wondering how intentional acts by one person or persons, which causes harm and suffering to others is illegal, unless the weapon is money? And why then is economic bludgeoning only deemed "economics"? What real comfort can I find in the knowledge that "legal" doesn't equate to "right"?

In fact, being legal has no bearing on what is right. Every injustice humans have overcome was once a legal right, and even called "divine rights". Someday we will come to accept the reality that subjecting people to economic harm and suffering is far more devastating than a punch in the face, a kick in the ribs or a boot on the throat.

There is nothing innately wrong with wealth. To the powers I say, after the primary needs of the labor force, and those unable to work have been satisfied to provide equitable levels of income, security and recreation, hoard away as much wealth as you can bear.

To the powers I say also, do not delude yourself into believing you have no culpability in the suffering of the impoverished just because this economic remnant of domination is legal. The suffering you bring upon the masses you would economically subjugate, while legal and to a certain degree remains "acceptable" in your culture of greed, it is indeed ungodly and inhuman, it is the violence of poverty.

There is coming a day, which has begun, when those in your culture will no longer regard poverty as "fate", "laziness", or a "consequence of race or intellect" or "God's will". Poverty is not God's will. Poverty is none of these things.

Poverty is the willful disdain for humanity by a minority of the population over the rest. Poverty is the willful cause and perpetration of suffering over the majority of people by the few.

Poverty is the purveyor and perpetuation of societal, domestic and international violence. Poverty is the intentional absence of justice and this injustice will not stand.

Poverty will one day be understood for exactly what it is, criminal oppression and criminal violence. There will be a day when poverty will no longer be tolerated but will be regarded to be as criminal as slavery.

Poverty is oppression. Poverty is violence. Poverty is a crime which will one day be treated as such.





h a i k u 9

Countless cuts to Me
with salt vinegar salve is
poverty's violence




Thursday, November 3, 2011

h a i k u 10

Obsess on nothing
even God, joy is known in
pure simplicity



Blessed

Blessed am I
in the original blessing
kiss and breath
of God's first life
first love

Blessed am I
pierced companion
in union with the one
and creation

Blessed am I
held up by the love of Christ
in family parish and community
love sustaining this
holy
fragile
life




h a i k u 8

Without ceasing is
God born into us, with us
in union with all



h a i k u 7

A place for the head
the sands of orthodoxy
can bury the heart



Monday, October 24, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Friday, October 21, 2011

Kissing Paul

I am perplexed
by this figure cut in rock
the marbled morality
the conservative touchstone

I run my fingers
over the cracks in the stone
and feel a warm breath
escaping the fissures

TAKE A SLEDGEHAMMER TO IT

Liberate the man
from the bondage
of controlling boondoggle
of deified domination
of fearful veneration

Arise Paul
from the tomb
of dusty imaginations
and dirt dry passions

Arise and enter my room
sit stay and talk a while

I am surprised
by Paul's passionate kiss
surprised by the exchange
of breath
and spirit

I had forgotten your doubts and pain
the thorn in your side
the pain of your fragile soul
unable to control your
mysterious urges

What warm body did you confide in
who did you embrace
who did you cling to
in the agony of your humanity

Who kissed you
returning the smile
to your Apostolic face

Who granted you the blessing of fragility
of finding God in our fragility
who reminded you
again in your anger
your despair and sorrow

Who in the body of Christ
touched your body in Christ

Who taught you the mystical kiss
we now share

Who reminded you
that the greatest of all things
is Love



Saturday, October 15, 2011

One

Sitting in the dark
on cold brick steps
sitting in the dark
in empty silence
the night breathes
in and out
its trembling breath

Flickering through
the dark green canopy above
is the moon
of the fall
through the leaves
the moon is winking at me
from her empty core of secrets

She is blue white
she is full and hollow

The silence of the night
echos the empty silence
within me
We listen to one another
for whispered awareness
the longing recognition
of sighing persistence

I breathe out
myself into the
moon-cast shadows

In every breath
I pour out countless
molecules of me

Every breath in
is breathing the cosmos into my lungs
and all that exist before it

Every breath in carries the taste of eternity
all that is less than me and more

I am less than dust
awaiting rapturous fulfillment in nothing
into one




Saturday, September 24, 2011

Vows

Tomorrow I take vows to cross
thresholds
with my spiritual ancestors
of the desert
and of the old Celtic ways

Pledging myself
silent
heart
mind
body
and spirit
in Jesus Compassionate

To be pierced
in simplicity of service
to be awed
in the simplicity of
God's beauty in
the communion of
humanity and creation

With humility
with fear and trembling
that is living with intention
I come before God
family and community
to declare the communion of us with loving
Father Creator
Brother Healer
Mother Sustainer
and the companions before us
around us
and after us
who happily struggle to realize
Emmanuel within us

Amen


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Never Forgetting

The patio of our weekend condo looked east across a lake and cypress trees, I had a beautiful sunrise to share Morning Prayer with.

I prayed for all who lost their lives ten years ago today and their loved ones left to mourn them.

I prayed for them all, victims of "powers and principalities".

I prayed that we all answer God's call to mercy, forgiveness and compassion.

I prayed for the courage to live out God's kingdom in my daily living.

I will never forget.

I will never forget God's compassion.



Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Compassionate love, love and kindness, is joy to the heart of God.
Praying for those who despise you is a song in God's heart.
Sing then!
Sing a joyful song!





Monday, September 5, 2011

Of all the things we can do, mercy and charity will bring us quicker into the heart of God.




Monday, August 29, 2011

Manifesting

From Paul's dark glass shattered
an ancient shard pierced my heart
a wound for which there is no healing
but instead eternal gratitude
for finally living
it is neither anguish or joy
but some unmapped region in between

Still
driving in a van on 285
dodging angry spirits
behind the wheels of hurtling
4000 pounds of prestige
with chrome wheels
satellite radios and fine leather seats
quietly with a pierced heart
I say The Liturgy For Vans On 285

If this makes me odd then
I'm looking for the community of odd folks
singing "shall our hearts forget his promise, 'I am with you evermore"
giving Christ heads bodies legs and arms
bumbling and stumbling
manifesting God again and again
manifesting in fits and starts
Emmanuel
Emmanuel
now
in you
in me





Saturday, August 20, 2011

With Icons




These are prayers which I use with small icons to help me change gears from the daily concerns, calm the heart, soul, body and mind as I prepare to say The Daily Office. The icons are 2"x2". On the left is a Christus Pantocrator and on the right is a Mystical Supper (Last Supper) icon.

The Pantocrator is Jesus, the Sustainer of All, robed in a red tunic which represents his full humanity, and a blue cloak which represents his full divinity. He holds scripture in his left hand while his right is raised in benediction.

The Supper icon shows the apostles and Jesus at the Last Supper, the roof of the room is open revealing the city and hills in the background and angelic beings above all, signifying the focus and participation of all creation in the moment of communion.

I begin by gazing into the Christus, slowing my breath, allowing my thoughts to pass freely from my mind and allowing my heart to open more fully into the present moment.

Then I say the following to refocus my mind onto my purpose and intention, gazing first into the Christus until the prayers reaches the point marked here with a semi-colon, then my gaze turns to the Supper.

Loving Christ, in your compassionate love, you pour yourself out into us completely so that we may be healed, restored, transformed; so that in compassionate love, we may also pour ourselves out into the communion of humanity and creation. Amen.


Saturday, August 13, 2011

Purpose

There is darkness
yet in your light it dissolves
as you fill its emptiness

Darkness is not destroyed
but transformed
in the union of your presence

The quality of the bowl never changes
but is simply either being emptied or filled
yet the bowl remains
true to its purpose
whether empty or full

If I see God
in this world or in your face
what else remains

If I fail to see God
it's not because God is absent
but because of the absence
in my eyes




Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Michelangelo's Moses Has Horns


How thin is the difference
between wrestling with
angels or demons

Feathered wings
or wings of skin
beasties or besties
horns or halos

The degrees of difference
are as a reversed
image in a mirror
or in the flip of a coin

Heads I win
tails you lose

Choosing to be good
under the promise of heaven
or the threat of hell
is not a choice freely chosen
but rather a dark deception of a darker conceit
a bleak concession made at gun-point

Freedom exists in the choice
to do or not do
solely for the sake
of selflessness
without regard to
gain or loss

Milton's fallen ones made one choice
choosing once and for all to reject love

We are blessed to choose continually
to participate eternally
in the eternal blissful friction of creation

The lover's kiss begins and ends
before we can feel it

Who can say
exactly where is the line
where the shadow ends
and the light begins

How good are my eyes
to see shadows
to see light
to see all
in the full depth of being



Friday, July 22, 2011

Michael

Wednesday I was making home deliveries which took me to Jonesboro Rd. At the corner of the 285 ramp and Jonesboro was a man seeking alms. He was old, a rail of a figure in tattered clothes.

His right leg had been amputated at the knee, the joint covered by an old sock. His aluminum crutches were bent and dented, the arm pads gone.His left hand clasped his crutch and an old large plastic cup.

He looked very tired and in pain. I reached for my wallet where I try to always keep some cash for alms giving and it was empty. I looked to him and said "I'm sorry." He shook his head and said "Don't worry, don't worry. God bless you." With his other crutch wedged under his right arm he raised his right hand and his hand formed a peace sign and with his hand he blessed me with a sign of the cross. I have never felt the power of a blessing as I did with his, a blessing from beyond his pain, and from beyond all his suffering telling me, me, not to worry. I asked him his name so I could pray for him. He said, "Prayers mean more than money." Please pray with me for Michael.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Eucharist Prayers

These are little prayers which came to me in meditation for receiving communion.

With the host: You feed me so that I may feed.
With the chalice: You pour yourself out so that I may be poured out.

They remind me that I am but one step in the cycle of the communion with God, humanity and creation.



Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Still

There are times when a flame upon my crown
is not enough
when I would rather be consumed in it
melted down and recast
or again feel a passion of fire willing
to thrust my hand into it

Still

You always have
a table reserved in me
in my empty space cafe

If your face was the sun
I would give my eyes to hold
your gaze
knowing you would be the
last vision into my memory

Blessed is the breeze now
which carries the rhododendron's breath
back to me and memories of
God's kisses locked in the lover's embrace





Saturday, June 25, 2011

First

I was watering the garden
in silence

I noticed her
The Spirit
next to me

I asked her
which comes first
vanity arrogance or anger

She placed her
gentle hand on my shoulder
and said

Son
the closed heart comes first

My heart broke open

To the relief of my soul
I began to cry
the heavy tears of sorrow

Spirit embraced me
she kissed my wet cheeks
then whispered in my ear

Beloved
these tears are
the seed and water
for your
open fertile ground



Thursday, June 23, 2011

Children

Having known that I have lived
alone for most of my adult life and
that I was secluded from the church
for nearly thirty years

The bishop asked me
how is now living in community going for you

Good
I answered

He asked
and what is difficult

I answered
as with any family
accepting the peculiarities
and idiosyncrasies of the people

Later while in meditation
I recalled this conversation
and the Spirit spoke

She asked me
what was most difficult

My heart cried out
being humble

To which my mind added
our complaints
are the children of our arrogance

To which my soul replied
our arrogance fathers all our transgressions

Through her laughter Spirit said
oh my
so many children being fathered
by one who's pursuing chastity


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Posits

There is no greater act of praising God than to act in love, kindness, justice and mercy.

Posits

Here is my theology: God is Love.
Here is my orthodoxy: I love God through loving.
Here is my rule: Do towards others as I would have them do towards me.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Alchemy

My mouth will never know

the caress of yours

from your deep kisses

I will have no memories

of burning swollen lips


My lips will never taste you

your mouth

your tears

your sweat

your essence


I will never be haunted

by memories of your warm skin on mine

or the enveloping heat of your

arms and legs around me


I will never know the bliss

of my eyes emptying into yours

as I am utterly poured out

into you and left in

the sanctuary of nothing


Still when your hand

lingers on me

I am electric and

I dissolve

into bittersweet simplicity


I float on the sound of your laughter


We are twins

and strangers


I am deeply integrated into you

though never intertwined

it is impossible not to love you


Over an eternity never to be conversed

the distance will be the alchemy

transforming my leaden circumstance

into the pure element of my being



Friday, May 27, 2011

Spark And Remnant

There is the space within me
there
where there is nothing

The silent spark
and remnant nestles in
a point of my heart
still hanging unattached

God's
elemental point
Temple of temples
Holy of holies
need I say it again

Love

The abbey
is within me
my truth resides there too
living out from in

It's not the rule
which makes the monk
it's the monk
which makes the rule

What rule
directs the birds to sing
what purposes known but to them
what given beauty do they bring
in voice to break the silence


Saturday, May 7, 2011

Posits

Do we prefer guilt over healing to avoid the painful cleaning of our wounds?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Hanging

There
the invitation
hangs

There
where I intersect
my vertical journey
across time and space

There
in the spiral dance
around the moment
and willingness

There
to choose
to interject
honest love into
presence

There
at the crossing
bearing weight
on heart and mind

There
hangs the balance
awaiting only
the slightest push

There
rests the temptation
to ever remain
nailed down

There
the soul longs
to leap from sleep
into light





Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Posits

Radicals

Jesus calls us to be disciples, radical as he.

Paul calls us to dare to be radical, to actually consider changing one's mind, to be transformed. It is radical indeed to consider discipleship. It is radical to truly ponder changing my mind, my self-perception as unchanging, to truly consider I need changing.

Be transformed!

It is radical to love without forethought but as a simple response to The First Love.

But be not hard on yourself.

Most often the most radical thing to do is to simply Believe.


Thursday, April 7, 2011

Prayer

This prayer came to me while meditating during a time of difficulties and self doubt. It reminds me of my source, center and purpose.

God is love.
God is with me now and always.
God is the loving compassion at my center.
God is the courage and confidence of my heart.
God is my speed and strength.
God is the clarity of my mind and the joy of my heart and soul.
God is my healing and bearer of my pain.
God is with me now and always.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Can I Love God Apart From Loving Justice?

"While the South is hardly Christ-centered, it is most certainly Christ-haunted."
Flannery O'Conner

There is no doubt that the church (all Christianity) is haunted by Jesus as it struggles, more than ever, to be relevant in the modern world and its web of inter-relationships and conflicts arising from the pressing anxieties of politics, economics, freedom and justice.

Two percent of the world's population hoard 98% of the world's wealth and resources. The church strives to be relevant to the world in need, where 98% people who populate the world struggle to share the remaining 2% of wealth.

In the eyes of the suffering world, the church struggles to be more than buffoonish caricatures of cynical moralists. The church struggles with sharing political allegiances with the wealthiest and most powerful portions of the society, while ignoring the oppression and violence of poverty on the poor.

Homelessness, starvation, lack of even meager healthcare abound, and where is the church?

Where am I? Am I Christ-haunted or Christ-centered?

Poverty is not a natural state. Poverty is created, intentionally and willfully, by humans upon humans. Poverty is not a matter of fate, it is a predisposition of domination by humans over humans. The hoarding of wealth and resources is not natural, it is like any other hoarding, a sickness.

Poverty is violence upon the people of God's creation.

The Old Testament prophets condemned the priests, rulers and wealthy of ancient Israel for abusing and ignoring the suffering of the poor, the sick and helpless. The Prophets condemned them for misleading the people, equating wealth as proof of righteousness and of having God's favor.

Jesus did likewise. Jesus also ridiculed his disciples for their concerns for themselves over their serving the needs of the suffering.

As Jesus is spending his last night together with his disciples, Matthew reports an argument breaks out among the disciples over who is to be the greatest among them, who will be most righteous, most blessed, who will be closest to Jesus. Sound familiar? It does to me. So many claim to hold God's favor over and against others, because of practices or abstinences, or because they claim God hates fleshy vices more than their own particular vices, or that Jesus hates certain people over others... are they reading the Gospel?

In Matthew Jesus rebukes the disciples not only for their petty self-interests, but for still missing again the point of his earthly mission to direct us towards justice, God's justice, for all people. Because we are called to love God in loving each other, to love the world as he does, we are called to provide justice. What is justice in Jesus's directive to us?

In Matthew 25, Jesus tells his squabbling followers a prophetic story where the just, the righteous, receive their reward. Not so surprising, the just being rewarded. But what is very interesting to me, being raised in the western Christ-haunted church, catholic and protestant, dominated by sexually obsessed Augustinian, Lutheran and Calvinist moralistic theology, is this: Jesus makes no mention of morality as a factor for the rewards of the righteous.

What also is of great interest, and even funny, is that the just who he calls to paradise are surprised to be receiving a reward! Jesus tells them they are being rewarded for caring for him. They ask when did we care for you? Jesus tells them that by the care they provided to the poor, sick, friendless and needy was in truth their giving care to God, that by loving "the least of these", they loved God. They didn't even know it. This is the first surprise.

The second surprise is this, their acts of love weren't done so to gain a reward. They were surprised at being rewarded. Remember, they asked when did we care for you? The just weren't caring for the poor in hopes of a reward, the just simply acted with justice towards those suffering the injustice of poverty. They acted justly because it is the loving thing to do, they loved through being Christ-centered. Loving is being Christ-centered.

The Prophets and Jesus make clear to me that my true worship and sacrifice, my faithfulness, are in the living of God's loving justice for the world. How do I call myself a follower of Jesus if I don't take him seriously when I know him to say, "Whatever you do to others, even the poorest of people, you do to me?"

The challenge before me is to serve the suffering. Like Jesus, I must make petty morality the last concern and put the ending of suffering, Jesus' ethical center of me, at front and center of my concerns.

This is the calling. This is the practical functional call to answer the world's suffering injustice. God is calling us to answer the call to love God through loving the suffering. Do I then respond to God's love call by more deeply loving the world? Do I demand my political leaders to answer God's call for justice? Surely I must.

This is the agape ethic of Jesus, the tangible centering of Christ, to love God in loving each other. This is for me God's call to justice, to care for those who are suffering the legion injustices of poverty. For me, for my Christianity to have any real bearing on the world, I must answer God's call to love kindness and justice, the call to live God's justice for the poor of the world. God is calling us to relevance.



Tuesday, March 8, 2011

What Is Lent Calling Me To?

When I was a child, Lent used to mean giving up sweets. As I got older it meant giving up alcohol or sex. Lent also carried the weight of guilt. It was the time of year when even a cradle Episcopalian, such as myself, could embrace a good healthy dose of guilt... embracing the "Catholic" aspect of my Anglo-Catholic heritage.

Even as I grew up and Lent became more about "spirituality" and fasting as a means to further "mature" my relationship with God, it still bore a notion of self-denial and lingering guilt born of the misbegotten childhood notion that My Sin was So Bad that some notion of a God requiring a blood sacrifice was needed to wash it away... so happy to have put that childish thing aside.

So as I now know, accept and embrace the perfectly loving God revealed in Jesus, who could never require a human blood sacrifice as the price of atonement, as the price of my admission into the Salvation Club, Lent is no longer the great cosmic guilt trip.

So what is Lent then if not the guilt trip to end all guilt trips?

After years of not knowing what Lent is, after it having been liberated from the guilt trip connotations of childhood, I would still go to Ash Wednesday service, still fast, and wonder about it. Then a couple of years ago at an Ash Wednesday service, the priest was smearing oil and ashes onto my forehead in the sign of the cross and a notion crossed my mind. The priest was exercising the imposition of ashes. In my mind I saw myself looking into a mirror with the ashes crossed on my forehead and realized I had taken something on.

There it was, on my forehead, an imposition, I literally had taken something onto myself. From that moment on Lent had become about taking things on instead of denying myself things. It was no longer about denying myself things because I am a sinner of countless sins. Lent was now about taking on the challenge of understanding my transgressionss as symptomatic of what was/is lacking in my life... love.

For me Lent is now about responding to God's love and God's loving call in a very focused way, in taking on self-examination but not to wallow in the guilt of my transgressions, my lack of loving towards creation, but instead to seek out what it is in my life which acts as the barrier between God's love, me and you. As Jesus answered God's call by going into the wilderness, we too can answer God's call to enter the wilderness of our fears, our shame, and examine them and their sources in our lives and how they serve as barriers from our freedom in God's healing love.

This can be very hard work, much harder than bearing guilt, which may be why we sometime choose guilt over healing. Sometimes the examination and cleansing of a wound hurts more than the wound itself, but it is necessary for healing to occur and that's what salvation is: healing.

Honestly over the years, answering the call to discipleship has involved giving-up things, attitudes and emotions. Some things have been surrendered out of necessity, but the lasting choices have been in response to God's love. The choices of these kind have been the building blocks of the lasting changes. When one ceases to make choices because they're the "right ones" or because of expectations of some reward, emotional or material, but makes choices because they are loving choices, the loving choices begin to feed on themselves in our lives and the lives of others. We begin to choose loving as the natural choice.

This way of living, responding to and in anticipation of God's love, is the promise of God's freedom and as close to heaven on earth as I've ever known. This way, the way of Jesus, is the way in which I've found healing and will continue to do so as long as I keep taking on the promise of God's love. In my often distracted life, returning to love's promise and taking on love's promise is what keeps me moving and building upon itself. It's like how a tree just keeps building and building upon itself, ring after ring of growth, one upon the other.

To me it's not about giving things up to be better, but taking on the choices to be loving, to be well. It's about taking on the responsibilities of loving in response to love, to being loved. Whether Lent means taking on a new way to serve the suffering of the community, or finding wounds to be cleaned and healed, or in some other way to express love to God in each other and creation, these are all responses to God's call to love. After all, if we are loving more, then we must naturally be transgressing less.

What is Lent calling us to this year?


Saturday, February 19, 2011

Changes



It's been quite a while since I've posted something other than a poem. The past several months have seen me take a new job (yay!)and begin postulancy in The Order of St. Anthony the Great, an Episcopal monastic order in the Celtic tradition.

The new job is with Senior Connections, I'm a driver in the Meals on Wheels division. I love the work. It is good work. I deliver meals to a school, to senior centers and to elderly stay-at-homes. Yet the demands of time-tables and trying to maintain them in the pressures of nutty Atlanta traffic has been quite stressful on my right-brained nature. That, along with being out of "work shape" from a year and a half of unemployment and learning the job more or less on the fly has left me frazzled.

I've also had classes or meetings three to four nights a week. There is also the educational aspects of my postulancy, all of which has kinda left me worn out in general.

I also have Post-Concussion Syndrome which means I have memory and cognitive function challenges, high susceptibility to anxiety, depression and emotional outbursts. To manage PCS without medication requires a great deal of effort and is very fatiguing.

The first eight weeks of the job exhausted me and challenged me to find ways of dealing with the fatigue and stress. Yet I was comforted and enjoyed time spent teaching a class in my parish around the LTQ2 series. I'm also taking the Education for Ministry classes. Also time with family and my four legged companion Faldo was helpful. All these thing restored me and sustained me in balance against the initial stress of work.

The nature of my job requires a great deal of time driving between stops, which allows me time to breathe, to pray and contemplate upon the situation, and to hold my loved ones in my heart and mind which is a wonderful "distraction" from the stress. I also knew that adjusting to the job was just a matter of time.

I wake at 3:30 am, walk Faldo and meditate on gratitude. I also adopted an experimental prayer form, I pre-forgive the troubles which surely come with every day. I pre-forgive the negative or hurtful stuff that may come in the course of the day, accidental and intentional, I forgive too those who may seek to hurt me or dis-regard me. I also forgive myself for taking "it all" too seriously and personally so to keep things in proper perspective. This has lowered my stress, anxiety and agitation in very measurable ways. I am calmer than I have been in a long time. I am also more open to and less critical of those around me, all very good things.

I also practice Lectio after my meditations. Lectio is my favorite form of prayer as it seems to bring my whole being into prayerful state. In Lectio soul, mind, heart and body are all working together in a tangible way in reading and meditating in the material. After, I feel integrated as an individual and connected to life as a whole, centered in the heart of all being and moved to remain in communion throughout the day in all I experience and in all those people I encounter. I am ready for the day, and grateful.

A few weeks ago I had a breakthrough in the process of working. I had enough repetition to finally know the job to act without having to think about every single movement, which freed up my mind to be creative to find ways around the aspects of the job which were for me wasteful in performing the job accurately and efficiently which has diminished the stress greatly. The process is now a breeze in which I've created more time within the confines of timetables to have greater latitude in responding to the unexpected.

I also must say my co-workers are fantastic. I have never worked with such a great bunch of people, very helpful people, people who "get it", people who are teamer's. I shouldn't be surprised as people who work in non-profits aren't in it for the money, so they are going to have people centered values. Yet, I am grateful for them all, their help and their great humor.

I'm also grateful for my family, their love and willingness to just let me hang-out and veg or fall asleep, wake me, feed me, love me and send me on my way. I'm also grateful for my parish family, The Order and the elemental balance of spirit they bring to my life.

I will soon be moving into the monkhouse which will relieve great economic pressure and will add to my sense of communion with the brothers and sisters in The Order. Some volunteer responsibilities I took on while unemployed will wind down which will give me a little more time to again write and also gain a little more rest.

The changes brought with being laid-off in 2009, continue. It has been hard, but so rewarding. I have taken comfort in the graces of Mother Spirit's wisdom, in the living example of Christ Jesus and in the love of God given to me by so many in the widening circles of family and friends. I have kept the faith. I have lost it. When I have lost it, I have known the great faith of those around me who never lost faith in me. How could life ever had been better than that?

Sunday, January 30, 2011

POEM FIFTY-TWO

In the blue screened light of my laptop
I wonder about the economists’ problem
about not creating enough wealth

The problem isn’t about
creating enough wealth
is it

Ask the Four Percent

They hoard more than enough

My dog looks at me as I consider
the problem isn’t creating wealth

Indeed
it’s that too much poverty
is being created

Like charts, graphs and projections
poverty is an entirely
human creation

With
Intention

the poor are created
so that wealth may be horded

Four percent of the population
willfully create states of poverty

This is the fundamental understanding
of the rational mind
remember science class
cause and effect

While putting gas in the car
I wondered about natural resources
things both worshipped and wasted
depending on which side of the market
one sits on

And I considered the greatest natural resource

People
undervalued
and wasted

My dog gets up
losing patience
wanting to walk

The thought occurs to me
as we walk in moonlight

As weapons are intentionally
manufactured and violently deployed
so is poverty

Likewise is poverty
intentionally
manufactured and deployed

Violently

Poverty is practiced violence
exploding hollow-points into
individuals families and communities

Poverty is the violent rape
of our most precious resource
humans
people
children

Neighbors

Poverty is the torture and death
of starvation for countless people

Poverty is calculated
poverty is Four Percent waging
violent war on the rest

A lone goose calls across the lake
as my heart turns to spirit

Call it what it is

Poverty is violence

Where is my
WWJD
bracelet when I need it

Peace be with you

Monday, January 10, 2011

POEM EIGHT

The relentless thirst I own seems
unquenchable

My mouth is dust
for your cool clean water

Life is in
your liquid

So deep is the well of your water

And short is the buckets' rope

POEM THREE

The storms of our conjuring

Floods of consciousness rush to pillage the
landscape of my mind
reshaping the geography between my ears
to flood the delta of my heart
the river of life
over its banks
down
into the sea of being
to be remixed and remade

Yet on the now barren banks
such lushness and life will fill them again