Listen Child

Listen child,
To your breath belongs the gentle power
that created the sun.

Your inhalation awakens stars in your flesh.
Your exhalation charges each planet
with its atom-whirling flame

Mountains, streams, clouds and forests  
Live because you are alive.
No one will teach you this in school.

They are afraid you might be filled
with invincible radiance.
You must learn it from the terrible sweet drum
of your heart.

Listen child,
whatever you dream, whatever you desire,
whatever you worship, you are That.

Your journey is finished 
At this end of the rainbow. 
From here on, the work is wonder. 

Yet that bridge of sunbeams
Whirled with dust, sea and storm
Cannot bear the weight of angels,
Only humans like you.

Few pass over.
You could help them so much
Just by being what you are.

You could breathe a germ
of beauty into someone's gaze, 
be the fire in a prism of rain, 
lure a lover to the other side. 

Photo, our daughter at six months

Rasa Lila

We've all been married to each other countless times before.
It's complicated.

Our prenuptial agreements gave everything away to the ex.
That's why we're poor.

It's why you feel this flame in your chest     
when you see a baby at the grocery store.

He was the king betrothed to your eternal soul.       
The wrinkled crone inching forward on her walker

like a gray ancient worm
was the girl you ran away with, the vixen

who yearned to be a pirate's wife.
It's why that dark and perfect stranger

makes the twigs inside you bud with so much nectar
you just want to get down and do it

right here on the floor at Costco.
We're an Autumn garden of softening gourds,

crisping petals in a sunbeam, golden mushrooms
tangled around each others roots -
because in Heaven, none of us ever really
got divorced.

We're all still rolling around on a king sized mattress
in the bridal chamber of the Heart.

A New Earth

Inhalation creates, exhalation adores.
Some say, if your body is filled with fire,
there is no need to pray.

I say, your body is a prayer,
Bathed in night, exfoliating suns.
Sensation, not knowledge, is devotion…

Strike a breath against your flesh,
and see how you die in feathery sparks.
Every thirsting cell is an ocean

frolicking with unborn Gods
who never fret about how many believers
they gain or lose each moment.

You thirst for what you are.
Galaxies tattoo your skin with ancient light,
candelabras hang throughout you.

Set them ablaze!
This is how St. Francis saw Jesus
in the banquet hall of his own eye.

Just look at the one who is looking,
drench the brain in moonbeams,
wander among the fiddle ferns

that wind up your cortex in green
tangled forests of nameless perception.
Every breath is an animal guide.

It is not that you attain the goal, but that all
the light in the universe, falling toward you
forever, finally arrives in your body. 

One divine kiss overwhelms you
with tremors of orgasmic silence,
fire and night entwined,

your spine the Lord of Worlds, his consort
the mathematics of pure undulation;
at the end of time, they conceive

the orange poppy of a new earth.
All they need is your sigh of consent.
In that drunkenness you understand

how the endless past evaporates
in the fragrance of this moment.
If we speak of the future, it is always a lie.

Now is the wedding dance,
now the ceremony of dissolution,
the mingled beauty of birth and putrescence.

Why else would you become
a song of ashes still tasting of butter?
The gardenia-scented tryst

of your flesh and its motion is over.
What lingers is a whisper
on a smoldering pillow of bones.

All I really mean to tell you is,
just as your lungs breathe air,
your heart breathes love.

Remain Single

May the part of you that never gets married
Wed ten thousand lovers
With a single vow of astonishment.

Marry the honeysuckle and wild rose,
Marry the sound of a bumblebee
In a late September sunbeam.

All through the black hours be wooed
By the incoming tide, then consummate
Your silence with sunrise.

Though One and Two were never betrothed,
Marry the confusion.
Your engagement ring is the uncut diamond

hidden in a vein of sorrow.
Until the well is empty, polish the gem
Inside you with tumbling tears.

Neither give nor receive that brilliance
In marriage, stay single, remain voluptuous.
Those who never knew this gratitude will ask

How one virgin satisfies so many paramours.
Don't tell them that the bride is an exhalation
Of surrender, this golden body of breath

Stretching into fragrant darkness. Don't tell them
That the silver-crowned gift-laden groom
Is your next inhalation, entering the garden

Through the open gate of prayer. Don’t let them
Know we meet in moonlit stillness
Where names do not arise, your heart a lake

On which there seem to be twin swans,
But there is only one white feathered splendor,
Settling gently upon its reflection.

Anyone claiming to tell one from the other
Is more confused than the pollen  
Of a thousand flowers in one drop of honey.

We are only permitted to know is three things:
There is a secret bowing in the hollow
Of our nostrils, our ribcage, our cells and atoms;

Secret divine names all mean Thank You;
And all that existss is filled
With longing and pulsation.

What I really mean to tell you is,
just as your lungs breathe air,
your heart breathes love.


 There's a wedding in your heart this morning.
You are invited.
Each breath is a bridesmaid.

From the dome of your head
to the altar in your belly
is a long way for a bride to walk
without giggling.

Now your mind shows up at the reception
like some distant uncle
just to drink your body's joy.

Never underestimate the sacrament
of the Bridal Chamber,
the marriage inside you
that reacquaints estranged relations

under one family Name,
uniting spirit and flesh
in a vow of wonder.