Monthly Archives: May 2014

“Sitting Here”

“Sitting Here”

Sitting here between your words,the hours;
The candles’ sacrifice, it’s true, but not at all the station of the wick.
The privileged chosen sands descend, dusts upon

the double helix of the spring are thick
With meaning in the advent of the summer’s exhumation of the land,

moisture in the fumes,
the perennial perfume of many centuries’ progeny in fauna and flowers;
Pause the prayer, witness the intoxication of a new-mown field of hay, alfalfa,
And perhaps so many golden tares, and beyond,

some puerile riot in the sunflowers
Stand watch over the green-sprays’ breeze of spring in seas of winter wheat,
and humid tensions in the periodic stroke of the oddly incremental bower,
Birds delirious that have neither care nor common sense so far from
Nests and in such thickness here above these plots that dawns
And dusks are much the same when yet another clutch
Is free and moths there in the morning

of their annual marathon must be fed―a touch,
That knowing look from Arachne

neither fans the flames nor mitigate the flood of all her pawns,
Induced to stagger in the twilight―harsh promiscuous instincts in the cue
préoccupy fecund movement, in such pernicious natural opulence as sets the pace for all survival and never comes too late.

“They Might Have Opened All the Doors”

…again, in honour of the Blessed Event commemorated on this day…Bahá’ís throughout the world commemorate this evening after sundown and tomorrow the Declaration of The Báb, the Forerunner, the Prophet-Founder of the Bahá’í Faith, Whose purpose was to prepare the world for the imminent appearance of Bahá’u’lláh the Promise of All Ages and Religions and Founder of the Bahá’í Faith. The declaration of His mission on earth came in the early evening hours of 23 May 1844 when He declared His Advent to the first of the believers in His Faith.

“Whom do you claim to be,” he asked the Báb, “and what is the message which you have brought?” “I am,” thrice exclaimed the Báb, “I am, I am, the promised One! I am the One whose name you have for a thousand years invoked, at whose  mention you have risen, whose advent you have longed to witness, and the hour of whose Revelation you have prayed God to hasten. Verily I say, it is incumbent upon the peoples of both the East and the West to obey My word and to pledge allegiance to My person.”

The Dawn-Breakers, p. 316

The Báb (1819-1850)

House of The Báb in Shiráz, Irán [destroyed by Muslims in recent years

On May 23, 1844, in Shiráz, Persia, a young man known as The Báb announced the imminent appearance of the Messenger of God awaited by all the peoples of the world. The title “Báb” means “the Gate.” Although Himself the bearer of an Independent Revelation from God, The Báb declared that His purpose was to prepare mankind for this advent.

Swift and savage persecution at the hands of the dominant Muslim clergy followed this announcement. The Báb was arrested, beaten, imprisoned, and finally on July 9, 1850 was executed in the public square of the city of Tabríz. Some 20,000 of His followers perished in a series of massacres throughout Persia. Today, the majestic building with the golden dome, overlooking the Bay of Haifa, Israel, and set amidst beautiful gardens, is the Shrine where The Báb‘s earthly remains are entombed.

“They Might Have Opened
All the Doors”

They might have opened all the doors; they might have paced the floors;
They might have seen His image somewhere in the dream or lingering
In atavistic traces of His family line, the graces, strong and nimble fingering
Upon the instrument, the shrill nib carving statues from the stone,
in voice a thousand rapturous scores.
They might have seen themselves beside Him somewhere there in the breach,
His sun’s withdrawal at implosion, His apogée at dusk approaching
Whispering luminosities, crescendi in the vibration in clefs defying
barriers and shibboleths, crouching
In scattered catacombs, beyond the reach
Of mortals East and all expectant worshipers at West, in haste ancipating
Bas-relief scrawled along the walls and fractured vents
up from the seabed of all humanity,
Famed and storied such that His arrival only rivalled Bethlehem’s nativity
And by appointment, lest the Great Announcement
failed to spawn a catholic antipathy.
With but a word, the pantheon of deities and vain imaginings
that once were stone
were given breath to stifle such precocity in letters as the pen
Cannot recall nor circumscribe: that night, the Nineteen found their mark
as lightning from East to West and back again.

…admittedly obscure, my few words here will find their meaning in the hearts of all Bahá’ís who know the significance of this day; to all the rest, I beg indulgence for these few hours…

43:1 Afterward he brought me to The Báb, even The Báb that looketh toward the East: 43:2 And, behold, Bahá’u’lláh came from the way of the East: and His voice was like a noise of many waters: and the earth shined with His glory.

43:3 And it was according to the appearance of the vision which I saw, even according to the vision that I saw when I came to destroy the city: and the visions were like the vision that I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell upon my face.

43:4 And Bahá’u’lláh came into the House by the way of The Báb whose prospect is toward the East.


“Sonnet in Honour of the Feast of `Azamat or “Grandeur'”

Bahá’ís throughout the world gather this evening after sunset or tomorrow before sunset within the First Day of the Month of `Azamat [Grandeur] to celebrate the first day of the Bahá’í Month of `Azamat.


“Sonnet in Honour of the Feast of `Azamat or “Grandeur'”

As if we can not be denied nor satisfied, we never quite say enough.
Spoils, the pain of living fêted, foils in which we grope and grow
As serious as honeybees, as laborious as ladybugs indifferent as they know
Their daily bread and signs depend not on commerce but industry. Rough
Terrain, yes! but praise no matter what may be the trappings.
The cause is paramount, practitioners partition tracks of land
And sacrifice themselves in the finding—as do mountains inevitably to sand
Or are simply swept away in time along the delta seashores lapping.
Random landings shoulder makeshift homes with open arms
Along the scores of symphonies, a little high amid the treble, alarming
All that’s bass—too many notes, perhaps—but not for the proud volcano.
Gifts in memory or dreams, men now somehow reign in stars and haloes.
Even so, it’s not so much the harvest in files but humanity sheds a light
On God’s humility in grandeur’s breath that gives all that blossoms life.


“So Soothing”

A picnic

“So Soothing”

So soothing the finger in the ice cream,
Cubes against the cheek, and we the satisfied.
Linchpins in a thought beatified
By leprechauns splicing memories from a thousand tactile dreams.
Revisit sidewalks here and there you’ll find so much to see.
Comes the furniture of the streets,
The crew, the caste, the long lost host of Oz; cleats
Raise sparks along the busied golden feed.
Some one of them, perhaps the dandelion, a deliberate violet
Transits the crosswalk, but one of them will seed
A nation raised on nations, the former garden—a stubborn breed,
A sprig of clover, something there among the side effects
Of nowhere here today. It’s true but someone there, the one in plain
Sight whispers something–baby slippers—and knows the reason for the rain.

“Place Me”


“Place Me”

Place me nearer to the centre, then give me space
And grace enough to bear the remedy; the flame, itself, will not abandon
Me: the test, my soul’s eternity between the Sibyls’ Suns
And Heaven’s ancient foils. And as I absent the hour, I’ll leave this place.
While I was in the world, the same was not in me.
I must have been invisible for all the love I had, and knowing
What it was I came to see, I drained the cup
To testify that it was I who asked for more if only to say, “Enough!”
I bore witness to my own creation in and of itself is radiance, a balance owing
To what it is to know and worship Him in darkness and in the light,
extremes and overbearing distances.
In intimate proximities—the sirens’ coppers—of faith and blind acceptance
to the Holy Mariner’s golds of certitude and’ free volition
Merged in three most holy words: “Here am I!”and oneness born of absolution,
All belief and semblance humbled by the only response apprised in innocence
That I, myself, have been revealed as immaterial, in essence nothing,
a mirage, a vapour, a thing who’ll soon be evanescence
Sealed in time if not quickened in the arms
of certitude and radiant acquiescence.

“It Is a Consolation”


“It Is a Consolation”

It is a consolation as well a curse that none
Of us lasts within this parcel past the grave;
While here, we have no choice but to mark a moon’s phases
And it is the sun that tells us that we’ve passed another day.
Still, insofar as all of us are eternal once created, what honours could
Exceed this single blessing? It takes a thousand years for a sunbeam
To reach the surface of the sun and eight seconds from that portal to the earth,
So we are told.
What we are not told is that once created, the sunbeam never dies,
Nor does it remain with us for long here
Among the living nor there
Beyond the last hotdog joint on the way out of town,
And we are left to guess whence it came and where it’s going
And what the hell it was doing here.

“Suppose the Action”


“Suppose the Action”

Suppose the action to be a trapezoid
When witnessed by an audience or seen
By overweening others through the brilliance of a screen;
The traffic of public view that makes it so must be avoided
If potential and potency of action reach
Beyond the drawing board to the other side
Beyond the nose, beyond the niggling tides
Of critical mass in thought that flow from one beach
To another trapped within the atrophy of a single mind or there
Beneath in morbid sinks. Mass produce spoil in spools of social thought
That come in every season, easily plagiarised, easily bought,
Fosilised tomes of self-help manuals basking in the bourgeois glare
Of hucksters’ spinning-wheels and gurus peddling wares:
Satisfaction will wilt with public notice at a fair.

“The First Mistake”


“The First Mistake”

The first mistake, aversion. Primal anger twists,
Isolation glorifies mortality as eternity moans;
He told you nothing of it, then, but knew the ember blown
Was his, and further, that because he’d missed
Your words and pleased himself, another deep desire–
An anger–found its voice within him and the same
Became a mirror, and again the same a mutual denial while the aim
Of what he did was never seen or heard. You kissed the fire
Together, and in that flagrant fetid moment, she withdrew
To furnaces within her breast, the abyss, the lower rooms
Reserved for her and her alone and the chasmal maw he saw
Beneath them both. Righteous claims disguise’s the cause
That borrows breath too long and suffocates within its iron grip;
The mirror of the heart then obscured, complaisance rules the lips.

…art by George Condo…

“Relax, You’ll Get the Point in Time”


“Relax, You’ll Get the Point in Time”

“Relax, you’ll get the point in time,” and so I did that thing.
The longest hour stretched to endless days, days
To weeks, weeks turned vapid, decayed to patience frayed
Through scattered years, decades, and still the sting
Remains and the same drawn phrases, the declarations,
Statements, hackneyed principles, treasured
Piracy of imitation above experience, measured
Nothings by the annotated many, trifles in maturation.
No! the weight of numbers owes its audacity
Not so much to truth but to conspiracy and imprecation
And little or nothing to fact. Whether in the family or the nation,
The issue’s not found within the visible exoskeleton but veracity
In the flesh, not the gown but the woman and damned if anyone cares to know
Reality from Dover Beach or even beans
unless his last name’s Arnold or Thoreau.

“But, Gardens Flourish”


“But, Gardens Flourish”

But gardens flourish with the healer’s touch,
As beauty sees the soil and is well pleased.
And who does not delight his God with ease
In humble planting, and in the tender care of so much
Bounty shared within the house beyond its door that
Shares in plenty for the harvest of a glance,
Effortlessly, and then some. Growth and substance
Between the fallow ground and the loving farmer’s cap
Provide the essence of returning routine rapture.
Yes! and more. A man plants the seed
Lives without his gathering and all his needs
Are satisfied as he stands within himself; he captures
What is blessed with anxious gratitude in the hand
That feeds his multitudes from recreated spoils in the land.