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Friday’s poem, third in the trilogy this week: “Next”

July 24, 2020 Leave a comment

I’m sitting here, all in white with my mantra and mala beads, fresh from the first day of “retreat” with Deva Premal & Miten and Manose. I’m feeling very mellow, connected, in a deep state of peace. And, yes, almost like this is “Next.” Rosemary and I are in retreat within the Gayatri Sangha for seven days, every day at 1:00 pm EDT. The energy that Miten is invoking for us each of these days is that of “Compassion, Forgiveness and Gratitude.” These are deep blessings for all of us to bring peace and joy into our lives! May it be so for you. May this be the next step for humanity!

Next 

When I stop long enough to dream, to
Consider what comes next—there hovers
At the edge of my perception a
Disturbance in the air, a blur, a rush—

It’s like the invisible whir of Hummingbird
Wings; little tornadoes just beyond—
A flicker at the corner of eyesight,
A glint of movement too fine to be.

I wonder what higher consciousness looks like.
Is it a monk sitting silently on a cushion in a corner?
Is it even a human form available to five senses?
Perhaps it is that disturbance at the edge, beyond.

I cannot linger here for long in a conscious state,
Exploring this edge of what remains real.
I drift into a different dream and shift in shock
To wonder: Is this fluttering vibration a next me?

 

 

 

©2020 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

Wednesday’s Poem, second in the trilogy – “Enough”

July 22, 2020 Leave a comment

As I wrote and posted on Monday, I have three poems for this week, kind of a trilogy (at least I think they go together). This one is for my word for 2020: Enough. I have been working with this word, probably my whole life, but wanted to really focus on it this year. It is a very versatile word, applies in many contexts; I’ll let you use your imagination to extend it to your contexts!

Interestingly I’ve chosen to publish this today, July 22, Rosemary’s and my 37th annual celebration of our wedding. But my word does not apply in this context; I can never get enough Rosemary in my life!

I’ll post the third poem, “Next”, on Friday. I’ll let you decide how they fit!

Enough

Breath—so easy, in, out, unconscious,
Sleeping, moving, natural enough.
And when not, gasping, panic
A little death as flow ceases, seizes.

Means—water, food, comfort, semi-conscious
In the flow. Stuff accumulates, enough.
And when not, grasping, panic
A buying frenzy, empty shelves.

Freedom—to breathe, to buy, to be,
To choose what and when is enough.
And when not, gaining higher consciousness,
A steeper climb to see beyond ourselves.

Wisdom—perception is reality, perspective mastery;
The present moment holds it all—enough.
And when not, go deeper, beyond—
Breathe, rest mind, let go, BE.

 

 

 

©2020 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

A Monday poem: “Raw”

July 20, 2020 2 comments

Happy New Moon! It “fell into the Sun” at 1:33 pm EDT. I am ready for new, something fresh, a new beginning!

I began to think about this poem as I was grieving the loss of a dear friend a few weeks ago. My feelings were raw and I wanted to express them. But they had to simmer, to cook for a bit before I could write this down. And then other titles kept coming up. My thoughts turned into a trilogy; I’ll be publishing them this week, today, Wednesday and Friday. The first is:

Raw

Dough—cookie, bread, Mom’s baking;
Snitch, pinch, tasting, testing;
So delicious—raw. Then add the
Heat, alchemy in the oven. Baked.

Meat—beef, pork, lamb, I’m roasting, grilling;
Blood dripping—raw. Then fire, wood smoking,
Fat sizzling. Aromas arouse olfactory senses:
Gustatory delights cooked, offered.

Feelings—grief, anger, fear—these are raw.
Old age, sickness and death never ending;
Samsara cooks us, yet leaves us undone,
Half-baked, simmering, salty, sour, bitter.

Power—force, control, seizing freedoms,
Unleashing aggression, anger, instilling fear;
Raw emotions open hostility in the Human
Heart—half-baked understanding selves.

Wisdom—presence, open mind dawning,
Leading to a deepening understanding,
Transmuting the raw to a fully baked
Human to rise from the fire into Light.

 

 

 

©2020 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

A midi-week poem to celebrate the book launch: “Heavy Lift”

July 8, 2020 4 comments

Yesterday (July 7, 2020) I was feeling really wiped out; very low energy, tired, weighed down. Maybe it was the weekend full moon and eclipse; maybe it’s the heat and heavy weather, heavy energy; maybe it’s the ongoing pandemic and the disaster that seems unabated here in the US; maybe it is the collapse of everything we thought to be true and dear as we struggle under the weight of not knowing…

I feel better today. And it feels good to have launched the collaborative book I’m a part of (see yesterday’s post). Maybe that’s one weight lifted from my shoulders. And to celebrate this I did return to my poetry journal to ask some questions about this weighty time:

Heavy Lift

Does the Sun feel the Moon’s weight
As He lifts Her above the horizon
To better see Himself in Her mirror?

Is it a heavy lift?

Does God feel Man’s weight
As She lifts Him out of darkness
To better reflect Her image?

Is it a heavy lift?

Evolution is hard work for the gods
Raising Consciousness up a rung
To better realize creation’s Light.

It is a heavy lift!

Ascension is a steep and lonely climb;
It is an inside job for the strong of heart;
Energy runs high in this rarified Love.

It is a heavy lift!

 

 

 

©2020 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

A New Book launches today; my Chapter: “Qigong is the Way, A Calming Practice for Health and Long Life”

July 7, 2020 Leave a comment

I know; I have’t written or published here for a bit…life is busy while we are doing our work “on the inside.” I do hope you are well during this COVID pandemic, staying safe, being smart. I am keeping my immune system strong with my daily Qigong practice!

 

Speaking of which! I and 24 other authors and health experts launch our book: “The Ultimate Guide to Self-Healing Techniques, Volume 2”, today! You can get it on Amazon now; the Kindle version is only $1.99 during this special launch celebration.

Amazon Link

My Chapter is #10: Qigong is the Way, A Calming Practice for Health and Long Life

In this chapter I describe an “Easy Bone Marrow Washing” form, a 5 minute practice you can do anywhere to relax the body and calm the mind.

This was a fun project. I encourage anyone, if you have the chance, to participate in one of these collaborative books! It’s a way to get out there and to offer your services!

And if you get the book please consider leaving a review on Amazon. If you don’t want to go that far leave me a comment here!

Thanks and happy reading!

And if you want to learn more about Qigong my website is: Qigongistheway.com

A Poem for another day inside: Leaving and Grieving

April 16, 2020 1 comment

The last poem I published here was a reprise on a poem about grief that I wrote in 2016. At the end of March 2020 we were all grieving in various ways for all the losses we are experiencing. And we still are…

In Chinese Medicine grief is about the lungs, about breath. It is about air, the Chinese element of Metal. And the flip side of grief is inspiration – that inhale half of the breath; the flip side of expiration. So, as I wrote last time, we move to transform grief into praise; praise for all the healthcare workers and all who support them, from First Responders to the janitorial staffs. And as we grieve for all the losses we praise the work of all employed in the critical efforts to keep us all going, from farmers and grocers to drivers and builders.

Grief to Praise. Loss to a New Way. Death to Life. Exhale to Inhale.

Leaving and Grieving

The air is heavy with a metallic tang;
Lungs heave, souls leave,
Those who remain grieve.

Do you hear the sound of death
Echoing across the globe, the
Noise of passing and saving?

Are you quiet and safe, remaining
Inside, moving deeper in your
Journey to another way?

Breathe in that safety, surety that
This change is good, passing.
There is a new way on the other side.

Many are leaving, the rest are grieving.
The light seems dimming, shadows
Creep across the world.

Yet dawn is coming as the world turns.
Light will reveal the path
Outward, inward, leading home.

 

 

 

©2020 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

 

A Saturday poem, a reprise from July 2016: “A Time to Grieve”

March 28, 2020 Leave a comment

I came across a printout of this post from July 8, 2016, as I was clearing out some papers from my office. I read the poem again and thought: wow, here we are in the midst of yet another crisis; maybe the worst one yet! And there will be grief, lots of grief. A new killer is on the loose, not with an automatic weapon designed for war but a tiny COVID-19 virus mutation out to kill as many as it can.

In the nearly four years since I wrote and published this poem the first time, we’ve experienced a lot of loss! I don’t think I need to go through a list;  you all know what I’m referring to. But there is still hope; there is still light; there is still love! As we go through the changes brought on by the virus and the mixed responses to it, there will be more loss. There will be more love! We need a lot more love!

So here is what I wrote about the time then, and here is the poem about grief:

From July 8, 2016:

You know there are no coincidences. Everything is in flow, in divine order. The other day I wrote briefly about reading “The Smell of Rain on Dust”, the latest book by my most esteemed teacher, Martín Prechtel. This lovely little book is all about “Grief and Praise” – its subtitle. As I said the other day I’ll write a complete review of it when I have finished savoring every word. But in the meantime I am struck that I have chosen the perfect time to be reading it. It is time to remember how to grieve!

It is with humility and the deepest respect that I offer this riff on Martín’s work. These are his thoughts that I heard from his lips as I sat learning at his feet and I read in his marvelous book. And I offer it to you as a way to cope with a world that seems off the rails. It is only love that can right the wreckage.

A Time to Grieve

We seem to drift, as a nation,
Ever more deeply into violence and divide;
More killings; cops killing “innocents” –
“Innocents” killing cops.
There is an emerging frenzy to this senseless,
Escalating violence. It is so much, so intense.
It is maddening.
And it is not clear where it will end; or when or how.

Martín knows how.
He has spoken and written about it over and over.
We as a nation – as a so called culture –
Have lost the ability to grieve.

In fact this ability has been taught out of us!
Go shopping instead!
This is always the remedy. Consume more.
Eat up the world to mask the grief.
Hide our losses and sorrow
And desperate need of relief through grief
In our purchases.

Salve the wounds over with stuff.
Feel better with that latest broach –
Pin it on over your heart as a shield to hide behind.
Pin together the tatters in your broken heart.
Pretend it is whole; mend the tears
And choke back the tears.

For Heaven’s sake don’t embarrass yourself
With any display that would reveal your vulnerable soul.
That will not do!
There is no comfort there; only in more stuff.
How else do we keep the wheels on this economy
That promises protection, plenty, prosperity for all
And that pursuit, so elusive, of a happy life?

Grief is equally elusive as happiness!
We are not allowed to grieve.
Three days off for our dearest family members.
Take your own time for friends. Then back to work;
Produce so you can consume more.
No, we are not eating the world! There is always more.

Oh, and there will always be poor. Jesus said so;
And he was right about everything.
And they killed him too!
Never mind the poor; they are not worth dying for.
They are not worthy of our life style.

It will end in one of two ways:

We may kill one another as the violence escalates
To a new world war – a Global War on Terror
Brought to you by terror. Fight terror with terror –
It is the American Way. Our violence begets more violence.
It matters not how it began – it only has a violent end.

Or, we may remember how to grieve.
We can go to the sea and cry a river to fill it.
Weep for the deaths.
Weep for the brutality.
Weep for a society gone so wrong.
Weep for the wars.
Weep for the enemies “following orders.”
Weep for the loved ones whose bones we stand upon.
Weep for us, victims and perpetrators alike.
We are all in this together;
And we will never get out alive!

And when we have wept that river
Flowing to the sea, it might then be time to
Remember something else:
Remember the love that brought us into existence.
Remember the beauty of the world.
Remember the generosity of the Universe
Offering enough and more!
Remember to offer in return our praise and gratitude.

There is a cycle to the loss and gain,
The constant flow of less and more.
Know wherever we are in this cycle
It will continue.
There must always be time for grieving
Because there will always be loss.
Life is loss.
There must always be time for praising
Because there is always gain.
Life is love.

Live life to the fullest in grief and praise!

©2016 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

A Friday poem during this time of pausing in the mystery: The Good Things

March 20, 2020 Leave a comment

As I was writing my “morning pages” this morning I reflected on our situation with this COVID 19 pandemic affecting the entire human population. I’m looking at it as a “pause” – a time we need to stop and reflect on our choices, our values, our behavior. And we now have the time to do this! From this musing I thought about all the good things that are happening and can happen in the middle of this pause.

What do you think “the good things” are?

The Good Things

A message from Omen Crow:
You are in the dark; this is a shadow-time;
The mystery is yet to be revealed. But
There is no need for fear; fear is a choice!

Human activity is reduced and already
Pollution is clearing. Is there any doubt about
The connection? Humans will live differently
On and with the Planet.
And this is a good thing!

Humans will question more: about your lives,
What life is, why you are here. You will question
Your values; you will do more inner work.
And this is a good thing!

Humans will get more rest, eat better, breathe
Cleaner air, drink more water; you will feel better.
And this is a good thing!

Families will bond. Communities will form on
Technology platforms. Shared values will bond
And blend you in new villages where you will
Support one another through love.
And this is a good thing!

Ultimately you will form a Global Herd. Herd
Immunity will develop to create your protection.
And this is a good thing!

Humans are “all in this together.” Many of you
Are echoing this refrain. It will bring you to the
Place of Oneness.
And this is a good thing!

 

 

 

©2020, Richard W. Bredeson, all rights reserved.

A Presidents Day Poem: Currency for the Debt

February 17, 2020 Leave a comment

On Presidents’ Day my thoughts often turn to Washington and Lincoln and their birthday month. When I was a kid we celebrated both days, the 12th for Lincoln and the 22nd for Washington. Now, I guess for the sake of commerce and profit we can only take one day to observe both, or even all of the Presidents that have served us.

And yes, debt is on my mind as we careen toward a trillion dollar deficit! But there is so much more we owe than dollars! One of my most esteemed teachers, Martín Prechtel, often spoke of the Mayan philosophy that we are all born into debt and can never really get out of debt. This is my theme for the day.

Currency for the Debt

We are born into debt; we die in debt.
We stand on the bones of the ancestors
Gazing outward and we wonder:
What is the currency to pay this debt?

Our freedom is bought by the lives of those who defend us.
Our land is bought with the blood of those who have gone before.
Our blessings are bought with the hard labor of slaves.
What is the currency for our security?

The metal we have is leached from our ancestors’ bones.
The blood we have was shed by the soldiers and slaves we lost.
The freedom we have was saved by those who sacrificed all.
And security: Do we pay this debt with our freedom?

Democracy is demanding our attention to this debt.
Presidents have paid dearly to pave this costly way.
And yet, we wonder: would we throw it all over
For the surety of one more breath, one more bite?

 

 

 

©2020, Richard W. Bredeson, all rights reserved.

A Friday Poem for the US, with Love: “Get Out the Vote”

February 14, 2020 Leave a comment

Happy Valentine’s Day! Love is in the air. And you may wonder where the love is when you read my poem today.

One of my heroes is Robert Bly. I’ve had the privilege of studying “at his feet” – yes, literally. And I read and reread his poems often. One of my favorite refrains he has written is “It’s already too late!” This is from his second collection of ghazals: “My Sentence was a Thousand Years of Joy” and the poem titled “Listening to Shahram Nazeri.” So, the other day as I was listening to the news, a commentator said something like: “how far is too far?” And my immediate thought was “it’s already too far!” So, with apologies to Robert I am echoing his refrain in the following:

Get Out the Vote

Russia, if you are listening; Lock her up:
Call and response, chant the chant,
Lies and deceit, cover up: it’s already too far.

Get out the vote, trolls take note, purge the rolls,
Establish the doubt, break the booth;
Lies and deceit: it’s already too far!

Electoral College completes the lie; three million votes,
worthless; Michigan’s few thousand swing the tide.
We begin the slide; it’s already too far!

State is in shambles, FBI firings, DOJ meddlings, DOD
next? Fourth Estate attacked day and night;
Can’t hide the slide: it’s already too far!

Babies in cages, walls blowing down, Native lands sullied,
Rivers muddied, bridges collapsed, brown water sickens:
American carnage, yes: it’s already too far.

Laws don’t matter, impeachment’s ignored,
Power unbounded in the name of us all!
Where is the check? Or, is it already too far?

 

 

 

©2020, Richard W. Bredeson, all rights reserved.