Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Turn And Smile

  I was in a dark place when I wrote "Smiles." Mostly (not surprisingly)  smiles have a happy association for me. Yet everything has its dark side too--even light (shadows), and there are times when I become more aware of that aspect, and have more need to express it. It's all part of the Great Dance.


     so many smiles I've drowned in    then they went away    like a beached fish I flopped around on the shore of their absence gasping for air    other smiles stayed but I didn't    I pulled back so far inside not even a bloodhound could find me    when you smile my buried wound might gape wide again in response    it looks like a smile but it's not it's a cry for help or pity or just the lament of an animal knowing it will die

     somewhere there's a smile which never stops -- the primordial smile of the universe    life and death are submerged in it    cruelty and kindness    the deepest trust and the worst betrayal    that's why a human smile can mean anything    that's why when I smile at you you should open and shut at the same time    we often mean well but when a predator bares its teeth you better be wary you can't be sure

     the withholding of a smile can be a weapon sharper than the keenest blade    children get sliced to pieces though they still walk and talk and pretend to be whole    if only we could recover the unsullied truth of a baby's first smile!    if only I could splice your smile and mine into a changeless and serene embrace!    I can't escape the smiles that enthrall my soul and the smiles that plunder it    every day    every day


   On a happier note, I never stay in a dark place too long. I arrive at a "turning point" -- a moment of truth when I'm able to change course and turn back toward the Light. Sometimes this metanoia can be a terribly hard rite of passage, but it's alway possible. All that's required is my soul's total and unconditional surrender.


     turn I tell myself    but saying and doing are two different things    I want to go on the same way as always    even though it always leads to a dead end or worse    turning means surrendering the known and risking the unknown    turning means letting go    dancing clueless    pivoting my fate on a wing and a prayer    there's no growth without turning    without turning I'd calcify into a breathing corpse

     how effortlessly the swift turns    skimming over a pond     and the oak's branches    they're parables of zigzag becoming!    no straight line calibrates life    what can't twist and turn petrifies    what won't open out to possibility clenches    a denying fist    turning's the way I incarnate my love    turning's a kiss I exchange with the universe!    turning and turning I align my soul with the wisdom of the stars

     turn with me now though every fear screams "march straight ahead!"   turn like a river's course    like the tide at its ebb    like this Earth as it spins through an ocean of space    turn to face me then turn away then back    I see now there's really nothing but turning    I see now a single changeless direction doesn't even exist!   when a butterfly emerges from the cocoon and spreads its wings    that's the way it sings "I'm turning!"


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