Flower Haiku


Their lives are
so short,
the flowers in 
my garden.
But they don't

There Is No Meaning

No meaning, no purpose,
no plan, no center
or circumference,
neither justice nor injustice.
Only a swirling stillness,
energy dance of
forms arising
just where they are,
and where they need
to be.
What if a cruel hand
is about to strike
the child?
Friend, even as
that hand is lifted,
your hand is already there,
sweeping the little one
out of the shadow.
Act instantly,
without a concept
of "right" or "wrong,"
because no mind
gets in the way.
God is happening,
and happening is God.
You too are where
you need to be.
No plan, no center
or circumference.
Only a swirling stillness,
the energy dance,
the anarchy of love.


I craved the savor of non-duality,
but kept finding two,
the seeker and the sought.

Then I quit the search
to relish the hidden nectar
in every perception.

Chimes of wine on my tongue,
melody of vanishing clouds,
taste of evening star and amber glow
of owl song at midnight,

healing moon-kiss on my
fontanel, the lovelorn blackness
of the loins, the yearning curves
of emptiness around a galaxy,
which are the very
proportions of this body.

Each dissolving
multitudinous touch,
a quiver in the continuum,
a tremor of the one
invisible tincture of my own
awareness, and yours.


On her gravestone,

in the first letter

of my mother’s name,

a drop of dew.

Or is it a tear?

Uncertainty is the womb

of 10,000 things.

At midnight a scent of jasmine,

at dawn a fragrance of

sunbeams in lavender.

The vow of my wound

is not to heal,

but to stay open

like an ancient eye.

Even grief is a breath

of the Beloved.

If you don't know how

to be hollow,

how will you be

filled with music?

No Floor

I love kneeling to the tiny spark

that ignited this fire in my chest.

The flame was not eternal until that

burning kiss. Now the whole palace

has crumbled to ashes like the dream

it never was, and I'm falling

through light years of darkness.

There is no floor where I can lay

my forehead. But there are other ways

to bow. I can offer my heartbeat

to turn the troubled silence

of your gray cocoon into a song

of plum blossoms. Or distill

all my desires into the dewy smell

of hay grass after Summer rain. 

I could become that spark,

drifting into your home,

consuming your world in an instant

like smokeless camphor.

After the inferno, what's left

but dust and joy? Eons ago

I knelt down while you were sleeping.

The cream of your breath rose.

I tasted some with my tongue.

Now I'm waking you up

To show you how to dissolve.

There was never any chrysalis,

never any waiting time to be

a postulant. Take my hand.

Don't leap. You have already fallen.

Just gaze down and discover

your naked body of rainbows

dancing for no reason in the golden void.

Artist: Matt Collishaw

Only Christianity

"Meditate like Christ. He lost himself in love."
~Neem Karoli Baba
This is the only Christianity I know:
At the end of each breath, 
the death of Jesus.
At the rise of each breath, 
the resurrection.
What happened 2000 years ago,
what will happen at the last judgment,
doesn't concern me now.
The sound of a wood thrush
is the end of time.
Because I am awake, 
every dogwood blossom is the Parousia,
the coming of the Christ.
Oh yes, I am a fallen creature
plummeting into grace.
From what should I be saved?
I was never lost.
The One who bears my soul,
a pang of fire in her heart,
can never let me go!

Foot Washing


You worship him

as if he wasn't just like you.

But why did he come?

Only to reveal that your body 

and the Lord of Love 

were born of one mother. 

His blood and yours is beaten 

to a froth by her heart.

His sole is covered with the same dust.

Both say, I Am.

The I's are different, but the Am is one.

You bend and wash his feet with weeping,

dry them with your fallen hair.

He can barely tolerate such behavior.

Soon he pulls you toward his lips

and whispers your true name.

He fills you like a reed with breath.

Then he bows to You.

Which must be why you feel a secret yearning

to prostrate your flesh before the wildest flower,

the pulsating stone, the un-created sky.

You might well genuflect your life away

were it not for the pure white veil 

of learning: tear it off!  

The tears of a fool are jewels. 

Shatter your crown on a forget-me-not, 

a worm-encrypted clump of loam 

at the ragged edge of the pasture, the gaze 

of a lost Honduran boy across the wall.

Haven’t we come here to wash 

each other from head to toe

as we might bathe a newborn child, 

a grandfather's corpse?

Friend, what pours from these eyes 

is the ocean of forgiveness.

Art: Mary Madgalene washing the feet of Jesus
from the website of Clairmont School of Theology.


I don't need you to change me.
Just help me become
who I am. 
It is good
and very good for me
to feel precisely what I feel,
this cloud of grief,
this downpour of despair,
without any names or notes
to self.
Only let me dissolve
in a healing rain
that penetrates all my shadows.
A liquid sliver of sun may arise
on the jagged edge of mourning.
Or not.
Now I can feel everything
because I have tasted
the night.
How a bud bursts, spilling
beauty from its wound.
How the chrysalis shatters, 
frees the golden 
moth from her season 
of uncertainty.
How a single tear 
becomes the sky.
Photo by Laurent Berthier

Nama Rupa

In the beginning, the Word,

names blossoming first, bursting

from the luster of silence,

then the texture of the echo

called into softness

through pastel incantations

of Columbine, Dianthus,

Pulsatilla the Pasque Flower

also known as Mouse On A Stick,

Japanese Anemone, Grass Widow,

Pearly Everlasting invoked

as Anaphalis Margaritacea,

Fritillaria the Chocolate Lily, 

Trillium and Golden Bush,

Dodecatheon the Shooting Star,

 Lysitichon the secret lovely

Western Skunk Cabbage,

a shout of April flowers,

cacophony of wave and trough,

ghosts of beauty, shadow-bright,

erupting from a frolic of quarks

into fragrant clustered photons,

the nectar of your flesh.

Photo: Skunk Cabbage by Don Elliot

April 12, Beginning of the Fast


Tonight the darkness
barely opens her eye,
a sliver of moon.
Yet this is enough
to fill the Prophet's chest
with splendor,
his belly with the feast
of emptiness,
and turn his breath into a caravan
laden with gold,
moving Westward
through desert silence.
Tonight is the beginning
and the end of time,
because we compare this moment
to no other.
And the dawn sparrow's bell
of awakening
will be like no music.
Ramadan Mubarak!

Don't Forget

Don't forget
how we got here.
Yearning to kiss
the dark sweet soil,
we bowed too deeply.
What shall we do?
Some say, 
arise, ascend!
I say, there's an even
deeper bow 
inside this one
that carries us home.

As A Warrior

I yearned for you,

but you were the fountain

of yearning.

As a warrior does not flee

yet moves toward

the assassin,

so a lover moves

toward the pain
in the heart.

Both wield a saber

whetted by death

and compassion,

that one 

made of steel, 

this one made

of breath.


Arabic calligraphy for 'Huw,' the name of God and
the sound breath makes moving through the heart.


How does the Serpent
dance without feet?
By standing on the tip of her tail,
rooted in the loam beneath
your belly.
How does she hug you
without arms, without hands,
stroking your hair,
placing two fingers
like white petals on your crown,
running them down the nape
of your neck, your spine?
She whirls inside her stillness,
and you feel everything.
How does she carry you off
and bear you up without wings?
By sending the golden boat
of your own breath,
laden with 10,000 suns.
O take that voyage,
throw away the oar,
become a sail.
And how does she
speak to you in silence,
imparting your secret name
without a word?
She listens, She listens
to your cries of longing.


Why blue?
The tint of sky.
The tinge of silence.
The blush in the glance of Sundara.
The resonance of stillness.
The color of the space between
the notes inside his flute.
The midnight aurora
at the end of a breath.
The pool in the garden 
where our gazes meet.
Why blue?
Don't ask.