Longing for touch


Wading through the waters
softly stepping knee deep
with wonder unknowing
what lies in wait
will each step be closer
to heaven
to salvation
or the whirlpool of desire
dragging us down
breathlessly alone
the heart knows no fear
love has no equal
life longs for itself
and does not surrender
without good reason
touch who we can
through words and deeds
across miles
by smiles
and wide eyes
loving the ways we may
still hope
still touch
still love

Photo – “Tidal Beach” Lewes, DE by gfs

Reflections on water


not a whisper was heard
from the blossoms
of the way
we misbehaved
and did not see
the reason we were standing
alone and wondering
what was the meaning
the beginning
(and the end)
flowers bloom
when spring begs
life rises with them
so shall we all
touch the sky
the space between us
exists only in time
the heart is not confined
it knows only love
come to me
let it be

Photo “Cherry Blossoms on the Potomac” by gfs 2020

A River Runs Through It

What cool water there must be in Montana, as the crystalline mountain snows melt into streams and make their way down river, leading ever to nourish the landscape, and ultimately after thousands of miles to their home in the sea.

Norman Maclean was fond of the water, and was graced in knowing the land and the water and the air the way he did. Without ever studying Zen he became entranced by these elementals, and came to know his God on earth in a way that would make many of us envious – jealous, and in so doing we slip farther away from our own salvation.

In his lifetime the analogy of the water is rich with meaning. We view a pond and standing at the shore we cannot see the bottom, since there is a wind and the waters are stirring, there are waves on the surface, ‘ripples on the water’, and these obscure what is below.

The mind is like the waters, deep, often dark and mysterious. Nature, the world around us, the senses and the perceptions are the wind and the waves, and the bottom of the pond is our destiny, our true self, the one which we seek, and are bound to know.

Looking at the water in this way we can see that until we still the waves, the constant motion of the mind flitting from here to there and back again, then the bottom will always be obscured, and our journey will be long and restless.

When we can rest on the waters edge, and the winds calm, as the sun shines warm upon our skin, the surface of the waters become a clear glass and the bottom … our eternal spirit … comes into view. Fleetingly at first, but evermore we are changed. In the moment of serenity, we know our God is within, and live renewed.

This is the Spirit Norman wrote of, and sought in the rivers that parted the earth throughout his boyhood, and to which he returned in old age. This is the Spirit the Native Americans knew. This is our source, the place we are bound, the place of our origin.

“I am haunted by water …” (Norman Maclean)

I Am Legion

Purpose in being
tells me a story
Life and the living
reach out to learn

A fire in the distance
glows red in the sky
reflecting how fear
is embracing our days

Tonight the garden
of Eden is only
a place to remember
where passion was still

Some vague recollection
found its way into
tomorrow the presence
of innocent love

Without a desire
its separate creation
how could I know
the true meaning of life

Or feel the unreason
in this veil of tears
where shadows grow longer
yet vacant remain. –

I am so many
and willing to be
these cohorts of being
creations of mind

All haunt the mem’ry
of what I’m becoming
This legion of souls
all told they are mine