if a pile of ashes could speak

30 Jun

What if I just stopped

trying so hard

and just let the love,

knocking at the door,

inside?

A dangerous question…

Small gestures

are having Richter waves

in and out of this body-

a student’s obligatory email

wishing me a good day

suddenly is seen for the kindness it contains

and when some angry words are muttered

in the grocery store line,

out of her own pain,

I sigh, so kind!

Living in the seat of now

helps me to see all I overlooked before

but this seat is also hot,

an electric chair.

Will I burst into flames

sitting here too often?

It feels so, at the tender edge,

where death by combustion is certain.

Running from the fire

of our own beauty

and peace

is a silly and dramatic pretense.

It feels like

there’s nothing left to say

about anything other than that.

Now, I’m only able to return to the hot seat

10,000 times a day.

My charring is on the menu.

Every face that enters my world, my mirror,

every bee that buzzes and stings, as well.

Every watermelon too heavy to carry,

it’s thickness a testament

to the persistence and strength

for the will of matter and life,

inedible from my palate,

yet still holding up its end

of a cycle

from seed to fruit to seed

sown in soil

of waste turning into food,

given time.

I think I am.

I perceive this world as broken

but as I stretch beyond myopia

I see the world rightly aflame,

but really,  I am,

and

you are, aren’t you?

Life happens on the skin

and in the sinew

Down to the cells holding

an agreement of flesh together

which we forget to register.

Pat your belly

and eat the watermelon

and feel

what is here

now, right here

that close.

So simple,

the fire

of your existence.

4 Responses to “if a pile of ashes could speak”

  1. sheila beahm June 30, 2022 at 8:02 pm #

    Beautiful

  2. Kelly Kuhn July 4, 2022 at 9:02 pm #

    Ah that settled nicely in my bones.

  3. Alison and Don July 13, 2022 at 9:59 pm #

    Aaaaaah, so accurate, so beautiful. “So simple the fire of your existence.” Yes.

    And I share with you Adyashanti’s poem
    A Tendency To Shine:

    If you prefer smoke over fire
    then get up now and leave.
    For I do not intend to perfume
    your mind’s clothing
    with more sooty knowledge.

    No, I have something else in mind.
    Today I hold a flame in my left hand
    and a sword in my right.
    There will be no damage control today.

    For God is in a mood
    to plunder your riches and
    fling you nakedly
    into such breathtaking poverty
    that all that will be left of you
    will be a tendency to shine.

    So don’t just sit around this flame
    choking on your mind.
    For this is no campfire song
    to mindlessly mantra yourself to sleep with.

    Jump now into the space
    between thoughts
    and exit this dream
    before I burn the damn place down.

    Much love
    Alison

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