Beyond the first awareness is the seed,
source untouched by any craving need,
spark forever steadfast in its light,
constant in reflection and in fight:
thinker is but thought, and doer deed.
Sacred text in hand, the lion waits;
teaching is the path through golden gates
reaching other realms and then
byssal depths of light beyond all ken.
One question given, answers dissipate.
Lion for reflection on the plains,
Free of deep delusion, in the rains
looks out on golden grasses and the sky;
golden eyes outlook all things that die.
Self once overcome, no self remains;
thoughts devoid of craving know no pain.
I sat upon the wayside, lost in thought
of longest years and great ideas and loves,
of hopes and hearts in darkness caught,
of mighty topics handled with kid gloves
by men who never think save on their meals,
by minds that know no truths but only feel,
who have never winding paths of Wisdom sought.
Through all my many days of glowering cloud --
the days are many, though the years be few --
of this I was most often proud,
that I knew and saw more than others do;
but minds are mirrors wavy and unwise,
prone to malice, mischievous with lies.
When I see the world, why trust my sight as true?
Or perhaps it is, but in a subtle way;
for many are the threads that God can spin
upon the loom of life, and in bright day
one pure white refracts through many men,
yet never less a white as it plays upon the face
of crystal planes, before it turns its race
to dazzle mind and eye with plural ray.
A rabbit stole the sun; it, fearless, rose
and snatched a piece away, a shattered shard
that broke into the stars that nightly glow.
Perhaps a god inspired the lonely bard
who told that tale, that we might come to see
that rays of light refract through you and me
to be caught again only by the pure of heart.
For truth, they say, is simple, one, and whole;
it stays as it ever stays, unbroken and most pure.
When the titan for our sake the glory stole,
it shattered, for only God could this endure
to wear as gem and dress; as flint on steel,
the sparks flew out to set our minds to reel,
the fire of the Logos lodged in earthen souls.
Yet as I sit upon the wayside here and think,
the fire always flickers; for what am I,
presuming from that Hippocrene to drink
which lacks its full effect until we die,
but a thief within the garden, stealing pears,
and plucking those great things as none should dare;
and what is this but an all-engulfing pride?
And yet--and yet the flame still mounts on high.
What the titan has unlocked none can return;
none who speak it can undo that question, "Why?"
And as the pitch once flamed must henceforth burn,
so must I, now heated, lit, and god-inspired,
be self-taught; for learning is desire
from the One. To the One it must return.
The rain outside washes down the summer heat
into puddles and streams that flood the city street,
leaving the air cool; and, with relief,
the trees stretch out in branch and leaf
to dance and play with misty wind
as with some long-forgotten friend.
As a thirsty man, once filled, washes hands and face,
so they wash, with pure and unpretentious grace,
and rub their hands together as if with glee.
So you, my Lord, my Savior, work in me
new rain, which to the swelter of the mind
brings cool; and, through this mist, of life remind
old images, long dried from this age's drought,
and raise them, and bring their gladness out.