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Tag Archives: poetry

Slow Down, You’re Going Too Fast

Slow Down, You’re Going Too Fast.

Paul Simon is supposed to have written the song 59th Street Bridge Song which includes the line “slow down you move to fast” while sitting in a traffic jam on the 59th St. Bridge in New York City. It is not so much that we have to or, for that matter, can make the morning last longer. It is more likely when we pause and take time to enjoy the world as we move through it and it moves through us we feel that morning lasts longer.

Chronos time is a human-made construct. Here, we master and manage time. Kairos time is a fluid, natural flow of time without measure. One is calculating and the other meditating. When we live in the world in a hermeneutic way, we take time and read the contours of the world as it appears, as we encounter and experience it fully with all our senses. There is no rush in those moments.

Silver

Silver.

If we can live in the world and it still amazes us and brings us wonder, the silver in our hair will shine. What do we hurry by and step over during our waking hours which, if we were fully awake, would shine forth their extraordinary qualities? Being present and mindful in the world and in our lives, brings the world into a fuller contrast with brightening of the colours, fragrances, tastes, feelings, and sounds.

Today

Sabbath is here. Hafiz, the Sufi poet, wrote  this wonderful poem which helps me understand Sabbath more fully. The third stanza speaks to the need to be present in the world. It is each Now that we can testify to the truth. Yet, this truth is always transient, because I recall it later incompletely.

I do not want to step so quickly
over the beautiful line on God’s palm
As I move through earth’s
Marketplace
Today

I do not want to touch any object in this world
Without my eyes testifying to the truth
That everything is
My Beloved

Something has happened
to my understanding of existence
That now always makes my heart full of wonder
and Kindness.

I do not
Want
To step so quickly
Over the sacred place on God’s body
That is right beneath
your own foot

As I dance with
Precious life
Today.

What the Soul Needs Now

What the Soul Needs Now.

Rumi‘s poetry shines down through the centuries and provides insight in troubled times. When we are unsure and do not seem to hear the small voice inside of us, find an even deeper stillness and listen more closely. The voice is still there, being drowned out by distractions.

It is in the quiet and stillness we find the courage deep in our hearts and souls. When we do, we speak and act in right ways.

Tree of poems (1)

Tree of poems (1).

This post includes the poem written in three languages, English, Roma, and Italian, along with a graphic. The graphic is fuzzy as it should be. Living is like writing a poem. The space between the words mean something and create a fuzziness that perhaps speaks more clearly than the words spoken.

Similar to writing, living is always a process of editing. The stories we tell and the person we are (our whoness and isness) is not fully describable. Memories are incomplete and fuzzy even the moment we step out of this moment. Moreover, can we even know what we missed and did not understand? Living and reading poetry are always happening in the Now. They always take on new meaning as we listen and act again.

Living is an ongoing conversation in the world and with its phenomena. We live in community where our humanness is what provides the common feature between us and Others we are in relationship with. The world presses in on us and is included in the conversation as it helps us make sense of the journey we are on.

mono tasking

mono tasking.

Plants and animals only have one job to do at a time. They may have more than one job depending on the season, the time of day, and the ecosystem’s needs. They are present in their work and help create the world they live in moment-to-moment. They do what comes naturally and is given to them in Creation.

Alfred North Whitehead stated all humans need to know is in Nature. When we are present and contemplate we are open to mono tasking, completing one task to its fullest, and helping create the world we live in moment-to-moment. Richard Rohr reminded me this morning that contemplate means to see, a witnessing.

Mysteries, Yes

Mary Oliver writes many poems about life’s mysteries, life’s questions, and the sacred spaces we enter in listening. During Sabbath time, I use her poetry to focus on stillness and allow questions to emerge. They poke their heads forward and are always joined by other questions. The answers are less relevant than the wondering that flows from each question. The mysteries are truly too marvelous to be understood.

Truly, we live with mysteries too marvelous
to be understood.

How grass can be nourishing in the
mouths of the lambs.
How rivers and stones are forever
in allegiance with gravity,
while we ourselves dream of rising.

How two hands touch and the bonds
will never be broken.
How people come, from delight or the
scars of damage,
to the comfort of a poem.

Let me keep my distance, always, from those
who think they have the answers.

Let me keep company always with those who say
“Look!” and laugh in astonishment,
and bow their heads.

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