YOU LIVE IN THE WORLD YOU CHOOSE
You live in the world you choose.
Each act is a creation.
The evil and the good
Combine in just proportion.
What you see and know,
What you think and feel,
What you are and do —
All are by your choice.
Choose love, and you’ll be loved.
Choose hate, and you’ll be hated.
Everything you choose,
You’ll see in others’ eyes.
IF ALL WERE NOW AS IT WAS WHEN
If all were now as it was when
Christ came to save us all,
And Christmas Day were Christmas Day,
Not some day we recall;
And in the East we saw a star
And wondered what was going on
That ordinary night;
If God were walking in our midst,
Saying what He said,
And we were not His followers,
But trod where He would tread;
And we were witness to His word
And looked Him in the eye,
And found His message interesting
But too bizarre to buy;
If we were in Jerusalem
And watched Him bear the cross,
And suffered with His suffering
But feared to share His loss;
And saw Him die in agony,
And wondered at it all,
And this were something we ourselves,
Not printed books, recall:
What would be the difference,
Had we known Him that way,
Between the faith we feared to feel
And what we fear today?
I AM AFRAID TO LOVE, AND YET I LOVE YOU
I am afraid to love, and yet I love you.
My fear is like a wall I walk right through.
The wall is there, and yet it doesn’t stop me.
I need it still, and yet I still need you.
I know someday we will be in a field
Surrounded by the blessing of the sky.
I’ll dance with all the freedom of pure joy,
Needing you without a reason why.
But now I’m still afraid that I might lose you,
That you might not accept my desperate need.
You make me laugh and cry and be completely.
You are the flower, I the slender reed.
BEGINNING THURSDAY, THERE WILL BE NO MORE REASONS
Beginning Thursday, there will be no more reasons.
Over the sun I’ll cast a white shroud.
No further laws, no more revelations,
No sources of knowledge beyond one’s sensations;
In the absence of oil, flames not allowed.
Each joy without awe, without hope in its seasons …
HOLIDAYS ARE TAKEN BEST WITH FOOD
Holidays are taken best with food
As empty stomachs lead to irritation,
Particularly bad for conversation,
Prone to undermine a festive mood.
Yet holidays with food can often be
Helpful in maintaining a relation,
Offering a timely celebration,
Locus for extended family.
In holidays a temporary junction
Delays eventual disintegration
As generation follows generation,
Years of culinary dedication
Sensing well the beauty of its function.
SNOW IS JUST THE ICING ON THE CAKE
Snow is just the icing on the cake.
Even as the Earth begins to warm,
And we reduce our footprints for its sake,
So will light from dark again be born.
Old customs, rooted deeply in the heart,
Now live on as atmospheric joy.
‘Mid pines or palms, mince pie or mango tart,
Seasonal displays our spirits buoy.
Greetings, then, and hopes for the new year,
Regardless of the temperature outside!
Each gift of time is cause enough for cheer;
Each moment yet unlived a blushing bride.
Though the world be dark and warming fast,
In season’s joy is something that will last.
Nor will we soon forget to celebrate
Grace so bountiful or gifts so great,
Sensing well the fortune of our fate.
THANK YOU FOR THE HARVEST AND THE HEALING
Thank you for the harvest and the healing,
Health, wealth, hunger, all the goods of Earth,
All that we inherited at birth,
Need, joy, love, pain, grief, desire, feeling.
Know that we are grateful for our being,
Singing silent praises in our hearts,
Giving in the temples of our arts
Invocations to the act of seeing.
Vain though it may be to think you’re hearing,
In us there is an ancient urge to speak,
Not for any answers that we seek,
Glad just to converse — like love, like breathing.