Life is Duality

Day 13 “first draft” for NaPoWriMo 2013
_______________________________________

Life Is Duality

on catching a glimpse of the Great Mysery

•

I sometimes get very dark
my emotions get brittle and heavy
– an anger at life swells

every time I dig deep enough
be it on my own
or in a counseling session
I find two constants

they are things I cannot change
but they have left a most indelible mark

one unfolded over a horrendous period of early years
one happened in a horrible flash during my mid-life
both so horrific they changed forever my humanity

try as I do their darkness still surfaces
and my inner light gets smothered
— but I will never stop facing them down
when I feel them getting a chilled grip on my essence

that is what life is
keeping the good fight
and embracing with love and gratitude
the beauty we have also been given
and we have been given so much so amazing

life is duality —
life is balance —
the keeping of it —
and the regaining of it when it’s lost…

if you have lived long enough
is DOES get lost at times – often very lost

but life is an awesome opportunity
an experience of the profound and mysterious
the mystery we are not meant to solve
but rather to celebrate with grace and wonder

peace to all this Friday night
may love touch all of our lives
for love is the gateway to the great mystery

as one of our last great modern prophets, John said —
love is all you need
and in the end
the love you take is equal to the love you make…

so find your lover and make love
with great freedom, abandon, gratitude,
and the energy of the spheres…!!! 🙂

• • •

rob kistner © 2013

Perception’s Window


artwork by Jack Vettriano

Perception’s Window

•

we are infinite beings
awaking slowly
from some infinite place

our coming to be
unknown to us as any mystery
our essence an enigma

learned in stories
in waiting relationships
gradually we open to our identity

awareness dawns
like the rising of a newborn sun
breaking on our window of perception

we feel its warmth
and flow effortlessly into timelessness
as though immortal

we see not over the horizon
for we see no horizon
but limitless eternity

we comprehend no end
immersed only in the now
given of our origin

it is therein exists the miracle of life
we are infinite beings in this moment
dreaming to sustain the moment

• • •

rob kistner © 2012

• this piece inspired by this visual prompt at Magpie Tales

Evening Prayer


image:“House At Dusk” Edward Hopper © 1935

Evening Prayer

•

sun sits low on the horizon
dusk slowly advances
the breath of night begins to stir
all the daydreams are gone to bed

I sit quiet
close by the open window
soothed by the cool breeze
warmed by the memories
that huddle ‘round me

from far into the past
they drift
forward through the years

they visit gently
one by one

memories of those
I’ve been well to know
those I’ve been blessed to love
those that have got beyond
a tender tear for every one

a sweetness fills the air
just a touch of soft regret

my heart is full
my spirit calm
I surrender
to fate’s embrace

would this evening never end
but soon
the lingering day
will bow its head
twilight too will fade

as the waxing night
blankets my chamber
I fall still
and pray

pray to be carried away
in deep
peaceful sleep

• • •

rob kistner © 2012

• this piece inspired by this visual prompt at Magpie Tales

Well Traveled

…while it is true that, in the end, it is the journey that validates the destination — we do arrive at a point in life, where keeping one’s eye looking down the road, while seeing all we pass along the way, is what keeps the journey alive and meaningful…

 

Well Traveled

•

from here
the road ahead
is traveled differently

a shorter stride
a stiffened gait
a lessened pace
guarantees it so

but being long a traveler
provides insight
to match the bruise and scars
of years and miles

and the will to move
can best the journey
where wisdom is employed

questions arise

what destination now
what supplies available
what light of day remains

with no destination
there is no journey
only aimless wander
and supplies are short
daylight precious

loss of purpose
lack of focus
hastens journey’s failure

at this distance
this late hour
failure
is not an option

so I will go forth
eyes down the road
one foot then the other
in steady stride
focused on the goal

to arrive at love
spirit whole
full spent
from a road well traveled

• • •

rob kistner © 2012

Morning’s Pardon

…morning brings we fallen mortals forgiveness and hope…

 

Morning’s Pardon

•

fallen into night’s embrace
held down by dark shadows
I writhe in the arms of nightmare

would that I could rise
into the light of dawn’s nod
but I’m flesh, weak, consumed by flesh

purity laid raw entangled in my sin
skin to skin with my obsession
restrained to roil in my transgression

but soon the light of morne
will fold itself upon me pardoned
to pray I not be too far drawn asunder

• • •

rob kistner © 2012

• linked at Magpie Tales

This Heart

 

This Heart

•

this heart’s now yours
this damaged heart
this brittle fractured aching heart
broken by you, every part

I’ve no use for this ruined heart
plucked here from my chest
I seek a new and vital heart
one that’s far less stressed

a fresh heart that’s unbreakable
a heart able to forgive
unmarred unscarred yet tender
beating with the joy to live

• • •

rob kistner © 2012

• linked at Magpie Tales

___________________

image: “Red Spot II”, by: Kandinsky

Rāgarāja’s Daughter

 

Rāgarāja’s Daughter

•

radiant vision silken skinned
translucent alabaster blaze
torrid as a teen’s temptation
leaned low here before me yearning

on plush cloud so sensuous
sweet comely goddess forward bent
graceful face aglow with craving
you conjure ardor’s obsession

a’bloom in beckoned fiery swoon
forearms rest on pillow soft
thoughts aflame in primal need
lips burning smile a fetched seduction

Rāgarāja’s daughter lush with Spring
smoldering in golden light
that folds upon you satin supple
to bathe in warmth your arched desire

divinely-pleasing luscious morsel
served up by a master’s hand
passion bound to tantalize
to hypnotize my hungry eyes

lost in carnal fantasy
fired by this goddess buff
arises now my animal
in a beastly urgent lust

to wrap ‘round
this maiden magic
flesh to flesh
to full consume
to thrust
and thrust
my randy lust
’til passion’s seed
has turned to dust
and wanton
carnal flames
are snuffed

Spring’s sweet madness
at last
enough

• • •

rob kistner © 2012

• linked at Magpie Tales

The Journey

 

The Journey

•

beckoned to the final tide
called forth by the ferryman
spirit stirs to the distant voice
that draws you to the journey

caught still in this mortal realm
soul resigned to embarkation
time folding in upon
as slow you approach the vessel

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

• linked at Magpie Tales

____________

image by Mostafa Habibi

Rebel Rebel

…I republish this piece today in fond memory of John…

 

“we all shine on, like the moon, and the stars, and the sun”

 

Rebel Rebel

•

I’ll not listen
not be shackled
not be handled
not be ruled

I’ll not be managed
nor be played
manipulated
or be fooled

you sure as hell
will not tell
me

who
what
where
when
how

or why

what you offer
I’m not taking

your extended hand
I am not shaking

the world I walk
is of my making

and

I will not have it
any other way

your iron fist
I destroyed it

your sage advice
I avoid it

you can
rant
rave
condemn
and preach

your approval
I do not beseech

I seek only
my good counsel

I’ll not succumb
to might
or muscle

not be swayed
by your slick hustle

I am a man
of my own mind

and I will live
as my own man

this is all
I want to be

well-traveled
loved

and free

• • •

rob kistner © 2008

_____________________

image at top entitled: “Lennon”

10/9/40 – 12/8/80

• • •

 

…inspired by writing prompt #54, found at “readwritepoem”.

Soul Food

Something life’s experiences have taught me: seeing the world for what it is makes you smart, envisioning the world for what it can be – makes you wise…

 

Soul Food

•

there are countless contradictions
in the elements of the work we do
and conflictions as we strive
but bring these not to table

for I am you
and you are me
and we are all together
in this constant labor
for our daily bread

and this toil to sustain the body
this does not feed the spirit
this is not our true work

to lift someone in need
to measure well in tolerance
to seek the components of peace
to create enduring possibility

this is the true work
in the final sweep
‘round the face of time

this is what the soul eats

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

• linked at Magpie Tales and OSI

Two Moments

These are two poems about two powerful and indelible life-moments I shared with my son Justin.

The first “Night Sky” is about the courageous moment he chose, at age fourteen, to leave his mother’s home to move across our country, to live with me in Oregon — through the years of his high school and college graduations, and his early career. This was an incredible gift he gave me.

The second, “Book of Days”, is about the moment, two days ago, when he and his wife Christine, moved from Oregon to pursue a career advancement — a deeply bittersweet moment for me.

 

Night Sky

•

you arrived in spring
asking why I’d left

I had no good response
but the other shoe had fallen
with a deafening thud
so what was I to do

you looked startled by life
and asked me about sorrow

I had no good response
so I took you in
and watched as you untangled truth
marveling at your balance

for 19 years
together we watched the night sky
and wondered about love

• • •

rob kistner © 2011


Book of Days

•

in the book of days
clearly it is written
your time for moving on
beyond the reach of yesterday

in this book of days
so too is it written
clearly mine grow short
my grasp loosens on tomorrow

our miles apart grow greater
our time together lessens
as you pursue the future
I slip further in the past

and per the book of days
this is the way of nature
the son becomes the father
the father bows away

yet stands this father’s dream
would that this space between
but vanish with this pain
of bittersweet farewell

that the book somehow rewritten
would bend both time and space
and my days once more
stretch full to your horizon

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

Book of Days

 

Book of Days

•

in the book of days
clearly it is written
your time for moving on
beyond the reach of yesterday

in this book of days
so too is it written
clearly mine grow short
my grasp loosens on tomorrow

our miles apart grow greater
our time together lessens
as you pursue the future
I slip further in the past

and per the book of days
this is the way of nature
the son becomes the father
the father bows away

yet stands this father’s dream
would that this space between
but vanish with this pain
of bittersweet farewell

that the book somehow rewritten
would bend both time and space
and my days once more
stretch full to your horizon

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

• written for my son Justin upon his moving away

Wonder

 

Wonder

•

to grow up
is to chase off
our innocence
our naïve belief
in the world as a beautiful place
to harden against the magic
of our childhood dreams

but if by chance
we can cling to just one
perhaps we can hold on
to our precious sense of wonder

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

• photo: “Alice in Wonderland” by Yuki Valentine

Hope

 

Hope

•

I lift myself quietly
very quietly
from beneath the sheets
soiled with neglect
soaked with my nightmares

I am again awake
from another dark night
that began with fear
fear I might not survive
and ends in sorrow
realizing I did

I rise
make my way carefully
past the shallow-breathed crumple
that lay milky-eyed
in a heap on the floor
un-moving
save a twitch of the head

a head which now harbors demons
where nocturnal angels of sweet release
had lain down lush upon it
in fevered embrace
lustfully conjured
by last night’s spoon and lance
still skewered silver in the soured vein

this wreckage is my mother

I stop but for a glance
verifying life
then move on head down
angle to the bathroom
to the scum-brown bowl
to wash my face
lit sallow by the yellowed bulb
that hangs bare and lonely

strange eyes
hold me in the mirror
broken as my heart

eyes of knowing
eyes of sadness

grief courses through me
weighing upon my being
burning into my heart

I want to cry out
but there is no one here to hear me
no hero that can help me

driven by instinct to survive
by urgency to flee
I shudder away the paralyzing despair

in this dank food-less morning
in this ruined single room
in this coat-less chill of predawn
I gather up my books
step lightly through the door
down the damaged stairs
into the hostile streets
heavy with this childhood of strangled dreams

I duck and dodge
in and out of shadows
praying to once again avoid the evil
that lurks and slinks
among the garbage and graffiti
of these crumbled bricken’d canyons

that rolls slow and lethal
gripping cold blue steel
in predatory drive-by

evil
seductive as a smile
deadly as a snake

evil
which if diligence should fail
I fear will consume my soul

deliberately I continue
until at last I find my way
to the building
to the classroom
to my desk

to the only hope
to which I dare cling

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

this poem inspired by image below

• linked at Magpie Tales

• also linked at d’Verse