Dead drunk

Rumi: (Nasrudin)

Policeman to drunk accosted at 3 am wandering the streets: “ Why are you out so late?”
Nasrudin: “Sir, if I knew the answer to that question, I would have been home hours ago.”


All day I think about it, then at night I say it. Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing? I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I\’m sure of that, And I intend to end up there.

This drunkenness began in some other tavern. When I get back around to that place, I\’ll be completely sober. Meanwhile, I\’m like a bird from another continent, sitting in this aviary. The day is coming when I fly off, But who is it now in my ear who hears my voice? Who says words with my mouth?

Who looks out with my eyes? What is the soul? I cannot stop asking.

If I could taste one sip of an answer, I could break out of this prison for drunks. I didn\’t come here of my own accord, and I can\’t leave that way. Whoever brought me here will have to take me home.

This poetry. I never know what I\’m going to say. I don\’t plan it. When I\’m outside the saying of it, I get very quiet and rarely speak at all.

We have a huge barrel of wine, but no cups. That\’s fine with us. Every morning We glow and in the evening we glow again.

They say there\’s no future for us. They\’re right.

Which is fine with us.



My thoughts:

have lingered
in the tavern of
a thousand delights tasting
fermented brews that promise
perpetual joy
only to

I stagger
out on the dark road,
the way uncertain and cold
find the path that leads me home.
Why have I waited
so long for

I sit on
the kerb and am still
the road will come towards me
I cannot get lost again –
home will find me here
with open

ask me why
I am out so late
and in such a drunken state,
I only knew the answer
to that, I would have
been home by

went looking
to find my friend for
we had promised to meet this
but did not recognised him
in the noisy crowd.
Now I wait

simply sit
and wait, letting my
head clear and the longings fade,
that I will know him when he
comes to me disguised
in tattered


Jay Walking

What words were on your tongue
first thing? Did you awake
with a smile or a groan?
Was what you said
what you would want to hear,
or did you drive the sun
from the sky with frowns,
and curse the stars
for winking out too soon?
Did the barking dog
call to you in play, or
birdsong resemble only
old women nagging?
Did your body creak in protestation
and your bladder leak incontinently,
the stairs present a precipice
and gratitude for being alive
the very last thing on your mind.

Did you sit outside
and listen as the wind plays
each tree differently

Did the breeze kiss you
before drifting off to play
toss and catch with seeds

Flash of blue on wings
we watch each other for a time
Jay walking the branch

What caught your imagination
as you woke this morning
surprise at being alive,
or are you practicing being dead?

11 June 2021

Decisions, decisions!

The quote I read this morning:

“Socrates dictum: All human error or wrongdoing is involuntary for man can only choose what he believes at the time to be good, that will bring happiness. His only error is that he cannot discern the real good from the illusory good.”

Therefore no judgement! Forgive them for they know not what they do.

My thoughts:

What if my thoughts
are limited visions
of the world,
all my opinions
based on half-truths
and misinformation,
and the things I support
a mirage formed from
the heat of rhetoric
shimmering over
frozen concepts?

What if I could be free
of needing to uphold
my own frail illusions
against others
wild delusions?

What if, just for this moment,
I stop thinking
that my thoughts
have truth beyond
the truths you hold,
stop acting, as if
I have divine right,
and am the oracle
of infinite wisdom.

You laugh,
yet in each moment,
reflect back
the self-same stance,
and embody
the self-same battle.

How would it be,
to put judgement on hold,
to listen to the vibration
beneath the words,
to see the longing
and heed the needs
covered by bluster,
to recognise myself
in this crazy other.

Stop casting shade,
step into light.

28 June 2021

The Dragon

Since dragons are also forces of nature, the relationship between humans and dragons depends largely on the attitude of the humans. If humans try to live in harmony with nature, in the Daoist fashion, then Asian dragons are generally benevolent, but Nile-Oxus and European dragons are considered malevolent since the habit in those regions has been to destroy anything that cannot be dominated, and dragons were therefore considered to be evil because they fought back.

Why do we call
the driving force
that binds the universe
Love, and paint it
with a smile,
and think it cares,
and is benevolent,
even when we,
in all our arrogance,
use and abuse
all our relations,
and then imagine we,
the pinnacle of creation,
hold a superior place,
and have dominion
over all we conquer
with our namings.

Better we come,
creeping like the worm
before the mighty force
with gifts and gratitude,
begging to realise
the tiny part
we’re called upon to play,
honouring the might
and pure ferocity,
the fire within,
the glory that blinds,
and the thunderous
voice we are too deaf
too hear
over our own whinings.

That which we call Love
is a dragon spirit
of the cosmos,
mighty and fierce
in its energy
that is beyond
our understanding,
for that which I know
is small and insignificant
by comparison,
that which I understand,
but a shallow drawing,
and I mistake
this mighty vacuum
before which I stand
for the cave
in which the dragon lurks,
and am too naive to see
it is a small part,
the nostril from which
the very breath of life
is blown.

29 June 2021


There is a gentle hand that comes quietly, when all the words have been spent, and all the tears shed, and only a silence remains, the long empty hours of waiting and worrying and wondering. That’s when you feel it. Not think it, or imagine it, but feel it: the unseen hand that touches your shoulder. I have experienced it more than once, for I have been broken more than once, betrayed by my own confidence to find just how fragile a life can be when it is lived in a real world with real pain and longing. My strength faltered. My energy drained. My hope gone absent while I was not looking. Then it touched me, gently but firmly, a gesture as old as awareness, a hand resting on my shoulder, telling me that I am never alone. Before there were words there was touch: a message of love communicated by contact alone, an ancient healing shared without a word spoken.
Stephen Charleston

If I was beside you,
I’d reach out to touch
and reassure you,
make you a cup of tea,
check on your comfort,
carry the heavy bags
and open doors for you.

If I was beside you,
I’d lend you my shoulder,
sit by as you cry and
feed you tissues
to stifle your sobs
while you tell the tale
over and over
for as long as you need.

If I was beside you,
we’d laugh together,
share a glass (or two)
reminisce about old times
and bring out
the old photos,
tell tales of our kids,
enjoy a brief moan
about our failing bodies
beneath all their wrinkles.

If I was beside you,
the time would fly
and we would forget
for a brief while
all our fears and
tribulations in the pure joy
of being together,
feeling your touch.

If I was beside you.

As you face this day,
though I am far away,
my heart reaches out
to touch you, so you know
you are not alone.

See it in the smiles of strangers,
the helping hand held out,
the gentle words another speaks,
the parking place you find,
the joy in meeting old and new,
the stories you will tell,
the ease with which you fall asleep
when all this has been done.

Love is beside you all the way.

30 June 2021

Little blessings

There is a radiance
in the face of a flower
and of a new born child
that demands attention
and calls forth
from deep within
an answering echo
of the love personified
in all this innocence.

I see it still,
in the movements
of a dancer,
the voice of a singer,
when they rejoice
in their art
unrestrained by
celebrating life.

I remember,
though vaguely,
a time when it was so
for me, as well,
as I held my lover’s
fingers and tingled
to the first touch
of Love upon my skin,
and felt the full
of an unknown

with time,
my eyes grow dim,
my flesh untouched,
and loneliness
creeps in, closing
my light beneath
a shuttered facade
of self protection
and control.

yet, there can be
another way,
with heart allowed
to find enjoyment
in the smallest things,
to celebrate connections
with the earth,
to revel in the smell
of rain and dance
in moonlight
by the surf,
unconstrained by
imagined reality or
physical conventions.

as I settle
into stillness
and allow
my breath to
guide me,
I feel the edges
of my world expand
and flow
out beyond the edges
of my room
to travel where
and sense this radiance
settle where it’s needed
like a cloak
and comforting
and altering the
tense vibrations
into waves of peace.



Nature wears radiance
like its natural right
as the low sun
caresses the leaves
bounces off water
lights the white mountain top
and glints through trees
onto a stony path
before sinking to rest.

i see it in the eyes
of a child playing
of an athlete running
an artist creating,
as a dancer moves
and a lover thinks
of the beloved
or a mother watches
her child.

Radiance speaks of love-
it tells the truth
of who we are
at this moment
of what our heart feels
and expresses.
It is the shining face
of unconditional love.

and that unconditional love
is not the love I choose
Love chooses me
and makes its demands
free of the mind
and all my judgements
asking only that I love –
so that from my eyes
shines radiance,
the perfect Alchemist.


Long distance Love – in response to your need.

When you ask for my prayers
I don’t know whom to ask or
what I should be asking for?

and so, I sit in silence
eyes closed until I can
sense us side by side,
your hand in mine
and I whisper from my heart
to yours “I am here”

I sit with that until joy
rises at our togetherness
and my mantra transforms
”Beloved, I’m so happy to be with you”
and I sense our spirits rise
to dance together tracing
a helix in the ether, reshaping,
reforming our DNA
into perfect balance.

On the cloth before us lie
all the fears and angsts
we both carry, separately
and together. I know them
but will not give them power
by naming them, shaping
and re-creating them in this place.

Instead, I reverently enfold them
and slip them all, into the fire
that burns at the core
and breathe on it, long and slow
so that the flames engulf
and transform all our pain
into the pure essence of hope.

”Dearest, I am here for you –
what’s mine is thine”
and from my heart
a fierce flame erupts
enveloping all, and I sense
the force tingling through us
renewed, reborn, unnamed.

Then, as I open my eyes
it is as if everything has shifted
and taken on new colour
and new light and on my lips
swell words of gratitude
for this the gift we’ve woven
jointly and concurrently
out of the pure essence
of our mutual being.


Seven steps to making my coffee

I woke up this morning
in a strange flat
with an old coffee machine
standing dormant.
Where are the pods
and where the water?
Why does it not switch on?
What turns it on?

In this moment,
between desire and coffee
I make a choice
and patiently open my eyes
to regard what is really there
putting aside my expectations,
old habits and presumptions,
to explore and understand
what is here with me now.

As tranquility flows through me
unhindered by my longing
an understanding grows
from seeing small things
that point the way,
a half hidden light here
a knob there and time
that works unseen.

Then in a moment of realization
I know what to do
and the silent dead machine
with one gentle gurgle
spurts life and coffee
into the waiting cup.

As I sip the espresso
bitter and sweet
a quiet assurance grows
out of the understanding
of what occurred
and how easily I could
have blamed the machine
and grown impatient,
frustrated and irritated,
and so missed
my morning cuppa.


The tree

When you climb
to the top of a hill
steep as it is
gasping for breath
limbs aching
to find at the top
a huge old oak
arms spread
in blessing
over a dam,
and from one branch
hangs a swing
Then linger here.
Sit on the swing
in the dappled shade
and allow its gentle movement
to slow your heart beat
quieten your breathing
What if this was
that place you’ve always sought
would you hurry away
or fill the air with chatter?
The tree knows you
and has secrets to tell
if you will only stay
to listen.


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