Love is not what we imagine.

Not born of a thousand wishes,

or a million full-breathed sighs.

Not a prize

to be won,

when we finally get it right,

and blaze like a well-placed Sun.

There are no happily-ever-afters

on the path of true lovers.

Happiness is a fleeting, gracious visitor,

who does not wait for the bed to be made to stop by,

nor choose to come just because a perfect meal has been laid

and the house is finally clean.

 

No one can take away our longing.

 

Nothing in love, in life, in these precious lives is guaranteed,

other than surprise.

 

Longing is humanity’s greatest gift,

and perhaps our heaviest burden.

 

Years of yearning

and careful study

cannot prepare us for the reality

of another breathing, hurting, needing, opening, human being beside us;

for the capacity to long for someone

even when he is seven inches away;

for the necessity to be willing, again,

like children, to fail, to fall, to make awful mistakes,

to try and try and try harder and fail better and try again 

until we learn the art of loving well.

No fairytale could touch the immense truth that is learning how to love,

or the knowing that forever is lived

one tearful prayer

one anguished fight

one remembered detail,

one. breath. of forgiveness,

one day,

one kiss

at a time.

 

 

(hear this piece on soundcloud)

https://soundcloud.com/niema-lightseed/breathing-room-medicinal

patience

paving the road,

one unclenching at a time

placed like stones in a line,

unsteadily yet assuredly

inching towards full presence.

Prescience

of a way of being together

beyond fantasies of forever,

past the tense 

gripping

of the past’s tension,

provides ballast

through outrageous storms.

Outed, this rage,

reveling in unconsciousness

unmasked in its impatience

its inordinate reaction sense.

Rage, born of every wrong,

every misspelled song;

sometimes buried

yet always burning,

 casting blame in widening arcs

charring the hope for healing when hidden,

now brought to the surface

unwieldy,

unwilling,

yet also forgiven,

thus revealing its true form:

the fear, the sadness, waiting

all along

to be seen in its true face,

to be given its proper place

in the open air,

where there is light,

and space,

and room to breathe.

Where, wisely spread,

everything can serve its purpose.

And the love that is our essence,

the beginning and end of all things,

is found again, 

through patience.

Should is the sledgehammer of shame,

wielded against the marrow of our souls.

 

“You should have known better.

You should do what you’re told.

You should let go of what’s old.

You should already be evolved…”

 

Robbing us of our spontaneity,

humanity,

vulnerability,

and any sense of worth.

It tells us that frailty is inexcusable.

Omnipotence and omniscience requirements for acceptance.

That somehow our futures can inform the past

in concrete and solid ways.

We do not know what we do not know.

 

This weapon of mass destruction,

the torturous instruction

to be something other than we are.

To conform, follow the norm, or be ever informed.

This pounding shattering soul-crushing illusion

that holds us in heart-aching confusion,

that hides so close to the desire for greatness,

stealing words from our higher selves’ edicts,

and twisting them into whips

with which we scar our own backs.

 

 

Stop. Shoulding. on yourself.

Put down the hammer you have used

to punish yourself for being human.

Listen, yes, for the wellspring of discernment.

The wisdom to make life-giving choices.

The knowing of when a misstep needs atonement.

But do not contort to the whims

of a half-awake world.

Do not cast yourself out

from the circle of your own love,

for any of the ways weakness, failure,

or especially authenticity find you.

Let not your mind bind you.

Speak words that unwind you.

Allow intention to define you.

And hold up your open hand.

Forgetting and remembering, and forgetting again.

loosing my way in all that has been,

the generations of anguish and misspent power,

bringing us to this fateful hour.

this now

this now

when everything matters,

but nothing is what it seems.

I am created from my dreams.

or is that nightmares?

Half-remembered phantasms, 

plotted patterns remaking the world

in every played out power dynamic.

 

I may cling to the aching ages of wrongness,

the betrayals and lies, the subjugation

sublimation of all that is precious and fertile,

the time and time again 

I lost my life or kin

to the hunger of another's ignorance or greed.

The role of victim

worn like a worthless coat,

hiding my true raiment,

providing no real warmth,

but too familiar to cast off.

 

I can carry the bitterness until it is all I know. 

holding it close like a lover on a heaving ship. 

But resentment is a jagged bomb, 

potentizing until it explodes,

waiting to shred our hearts into shattered bits and fractured lenses.

 

Seeing only the pain blinds me.

Thoughts of hatred bind me.

make we want more want revenge want reclamation want justice want destruction want hiding want numbing want forgetting want forgetting want dying.

But I can no longer be for getting.

We are not for  getting.

We are for  giving.

forgiving 

for  giving

for giving something new to our children,

for making a song of the discord,

for weaving a blanket of the shards,

to catch the babies coming into this healing world.

Nothing we have held onto will carry us to the clear dawn of our species' morning.

There is no more time to be for getting.

There may be countless reasons to be a victim,

but choose to let the light in.

choose the deep breath.

choose the open eyes

choose the bright morning

choose to be for giving.

giving it all away.

 

 

Image by Julie Interrante

What is failure?

What wounds the heart?

The razor’s edge of integrity

a fine line, a vast chasm,

between what is true

and what we wish could be.

How we betray each other again and again.

Lifetimes of layered lies,

regrets, recriminations, revenge.

Born of sorrow, born of pain.

This distortion of creation,

like snaking fire through a wood,

slowly overtakes all that is life-giving,

turning fertility into a dangerous thing

that only creates more suffering.

 

What is failure?

What wounds the heart?

Truth is a fluid thing,

words medicine or poison,

bringing healing,

or piercing the tender flesh of being,

depending on intention, and timing.

Yet somethings are absolute.

I hold a banner high.

Inviting the fullness of pure fire.

Comfortable in my own righteous anger,

Confusing the quest for impeccability with the living of it.

Many times I have lied.

Splitting my tongue, spitting deception, 

needling under another’s skin 

to plant deadly seeds.

Countless lifetimes

marked by fear, need,

sabotage, poverty, hypocrisy,

and other veils of the Maya.

Does my past, my endlessly fractaling failure

make me only worthy of the worst of others?

 

What is sacred?

What heals the heart?

How do I find the glen wherein forgiveness dwells,

the scented meadow where everything has a place

and everything is understood as a gift?

I can hide from the fire,

but it snakes through my veins,

settles into the pit of nausea,

stirs the stench of injustice,

and stealthily laps at the edges of my garden heart,

threatening to make it a barren desert.

Yet this rage only covers the bottomless sadness,

the endless prison of never trusting

never trusting anyone,

until they find a way to prove me right.

Where does forgiveness live

when the wound is ancient, endless,

only inflamed by this latest sin?

Seeking the unconditional in this conditioned world.

Are some actions unforgivable,

words unrepeatable,

windings and bindings 

no amount of prayerful fire can purify? 

Wondering if it is betrayal of self to continue loving one 

who has perpetrated or perpetuated the pain of separation

from the fire of truth, 

or an absolution

that would set us all free.

 

No strategy left but to offer it all up.

All of it a sacrifice.

The despising of self and others.

The layers of blame and shame.

My forked tongue and blood-stained blade,

pulled from my back, pulled from yours.

My longing for a healthier way.

Holding an open, at last unclenched hand.

Praying for the courage to love anyway.

Please reload

© 2018 by Medicinal Poetry