It becomes increasingly more lonely to live a life of presence in today’s world. We try to listen deeply and the other drinks in the empathy we channel. Then when we need deep listening, it is often not to be found. We are greeted with a barrage of self-absorbed words tripping over more words. We survive by leaning into the constant presence of the divine that informs and sustains us.
We desire to listen as an unconditional gift, even making it an intentional spiritual practice; however, our humanity longs for reciprocation. May we live into a bountiful space where deep listening defines our humanity and each one is blessed with a generous listener.
Constant Spirit Sprung
My young self shook
with sheer terror
in the Disclosure Confrontation Marathon
where they likened me to a monkey
swinging from bar to bar
shrieking,”Look at me, look at me!”
A constant stream of words
“saying nothing worth hearing” until,
the truth I sought so desperately
welled up from Constant Spirit
“I don’t love anyone because I don’t know how.”
to know a starting point for growth.
Disclosure Confrontation Marathon-
No deep listening here.
Trauma aside, it pushed me onto the path.
How much better to have been led to it.
c. Rita Hemmer Kowats 7/31/2021
Blessing in the Chaos
To all that is chaotic
let there come silence.
Let there be
of the clamoring,
of the voices that
have laid their claim
that have made their
home in you,
that go with you
even to the
but will not
let you rest,
will not let you
hear your life
or feel the grace
that fashioned you.
Let what distracts you
Let what divides you
Let there come an end
to what diminishes
and let depart
all that keeps you
in its cage.
Let there be
into the quiet
that lies beneath
where you find
you did not think
and see what shimmers
within the storm.
He was pinned to himself to die,
a royal tern with a black crest blown back
as if he flew in his own private wind….
We borrowed a clippers, cut and drew out the hook.
Then the royal tern took off, wavering,
then acrobat returned to his element, dipped,
zoomed, and sailed out to dive for a fish.
Virtue: what a sunrise in the belly.
Marge Piercy “Gracious Goodness”
I hadn’t been to the little dock at Echo Lake in two weeks and I eagerly anticipated seeing the ducks and Great Blue Heron, my long time friend. Perhaps a few cormorants as well. Imagine my disappointment upon arrival, seeing that the reeds and spindly cottonwoods had taken over my view of the lake. For a few futile minutes I yelled inwardly at the park department for not maintaining this little spot that gives such great joy to so many of us.
Then my ear caught that familiar flapping of tiny hummingbird wings and I watched one after another drink from the blooms of a tree that blocked my view of the lake. One bright red dragon fly hovered at an apparently fecund tree stump, while a two inch zebra-stripped one landed on the railing beside me. Another smaller dragonfly, the color of my blue shirt, landed on my arm seeking a like-minded creature, perhaps. My favorite red-winged blackbirds were sadly silent, avoiding the midday sun rather than serenading me with the song I love so much.
“Virtue: What a sunrise in the belly.” See divinity where it is, not where we want it to be.
Letting Go Of Trauma
Fly we must
Over the canyons of our despair
Spare us from echoes
Of shame and blame
That twist in and out
Of our honeycomb hearts.
Fly we must-
Surviving until we thrive.
Surviving until we let you pluck us
From the safety of flight
And set us down on
The holy ground of your love.
Root us in you, Holy One.
Mute the voices of shame and blame.
May it be so.