Old Westbury Gardens

clouds of rhododendron, close to our Earthly surface
distant enough to consume oneself in visionary pleasure
close enough to invite each visitor for a fleeting, delicate touch
we feel today colorful hope, these gardens
lined with planned pathways of artistic design
the moments a performance of colorful surprises
this visage an open door to hypnotic scents.

imagine these fields in their infancy, divided for an entitled few
the fruits of labor from numerous, unrecognized hands
oh lonely garden—now open to the eyes of the world
to those who continue to grant us these gifts of uncompromising beauty
you are the clearest mirror of majesty and bloom.

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The Horse Saint

This is an old Turkish folktale. It is the story of a pious and humble saint of his time. The thing this saint loved most in life was his beautiful, white horse. All knew him with this horse as he rode through the towns surrounding his home. One afternoon on his travels, he was riding with his horse through the desert. He came upon a man desperately calling out from the ground for water. The saint dismounted his horse to offer the man water. All of a sudden the man mounted the horse and started away. The saint fell to the ground crying. When the man turned and noticed, he yelled towards him, “What kind of pious man are you crying over a horse?” The saint replied, “I am not crying because you have taken my horse. I am crying because when others hear this story they will not get off their horses to give a thirsty man water.”

so much we want, so much we have
so much we play, so little we love
we yearn to possess false pleasures
we climax from transitory highs, struggle with pain
but don’t know how to ask why.
ask yourself what your place in the world is meant to be
for the sake of thoughts consuming? for the sake of pleasing “me”?
one person born among millions can do so much to change the world
how hard it remains for our generation to realize the mission of their souls.

weighing importance

do not fall into nothingness when there is too much to consider
the eyes heavy, weighed upon by the pain of thought
who said that this life requires my presence or my promises,
I said in time
when energy and age become aligned
in our gaze, that life would be complete,
our purpose would be clear
because direction would call from its destination—this path is for you
walk away from the voices of an incessant mind.

The Preacher

You are a beautiful skeletal inspiration
projecting truth, provoking emotional congregation
humans can’t help but respond
eyes can’t help but correspond.

Isn’t that how it has always been with love?
The sound of the wind gives up telling.
The brightness of the sun gives up blinding—
all is matter not mind, ripe fruit
without an avenue to reincarnation.

Fallen, this body into the ground.
Achingly present in this Earth.
Forage me now so I can be found.

Remembering Possibility

Fresh opportunity,
you were like an infant
coming from comforted darkness
into an array of wailing fresh light.

Mama has always given herself up
to send you forth
into the harshness of thought,
grow your legs
from the moist clay of the Earth,
open your mouth
to echo the sorrows of visible truth.

When you find this sweet country home,
you will find life, growing up and growing old
in the confines of honest exchange
in the textures of embrace
in the borders regardless of need.
Rests in you is barren forgiveness
in its most eloquent form.

Pity what we have lost to these huddled men
more than our country
progress in its infancy—
recognition of the dark, indignant past
we have ignored for too long.

There is no returning home, or so it seems
when the possibility of one another is lost
this is my nation at war, grappling with its own humanity
silent at a time when people will soon lose their ability to speak.

Confronting Evil

I talk to evil these days because
he feels like a bedfellow, a resident of my dreams
plunder in my eyes for the sunset, the heart
having no where to dig,
but beneath the ground for solace.

Before these days came, before,
when hope was allowed to leave our bodies—
I waited for you on the other side
with little in my hands, naïve I thought
that the hands could give little
and others would follow.

Now we stand irrespective of possessions
face to face with tyrants, all refugees looking for justice’s home.
Be it the howling residents of trees, the muezzins
of our towers calling people to prayer,
the humble congregations
voices of the heart ringing out and rising above the pain.
We now become each other, the shield, the weapon
that will defeat the evil determined to divide us.