Thursday, August 29, 2013

to see God

the pattern of the yearning

pattern permeates the universe:

and, as if we are eyes that really need glasses,
we only get hints of what’s there, 
rough shapes that bleed into each other
and we do not easily know how to click into clarity,
we usually cannot differentiate enough 
so that we can stumble into 
the awful glory inherent in understanding,
that understanding that will shake us to our core,

I look into the night sky
and the stars amid the black seem just white noise,
yet I start to know that early people
could see God in the patterns
and do their best to live to fit into
what they could know of the eternal,

I look at people and only know the tiniest fragment
of who each is at the heart,

I speak English, and I wish I knew Spanish,
and really any other language others speak,
others that I might be able to know better in their own tongue,
and I might be able to know the universe better 
in how that tongue shapes understanding,

nevertheless, verbal language is but one way of knowing,

I wish I knew math better
for its rules determine much of reality’s game,

I love to learn,
for every pattern that reveals itself
helps me to see more truly,
and each can then shake me to my core,

only in that shaking do I start to get the wonder
of the yearning in the patterns we can know as God.

by Henry H. Walker
August 25, ’13

Saturday, August 10, 2013

a psyche stress test

of worth, even alone?

like my body, my psyche needs a stress test:
I immerse in connection after connection
and know myself as spouse,
as parent,
as grandparent,
as friend,
as he who orchestrates the wholeness of our togetherness,

I am of value because I do,
who I am of value because we touch
and the touch makes me larger,
and then all leave, by ones and twos and threes and fours,
and finally, today, it’s time for my wife,
the other half of who I most feel myself to be,
to wend her way back to our home,

I feel time today as loss,
and I am again a cartoon character over an abyss, 
legs churning until I realize I’m alone,

will I fall or
will I connect enough with my own self
to feel of worth even alone?

I tested myself by biking miles up the valley today,
and I joyed in the descent:
every day can be a test of body and psyche,

may the river of my life flow well.

by Henry H. Walker
August 8, ’13

thanks to Google Images for cartoon image

Friday, August 9, 2013

of starfish and startle

Max comes

even in utero
he would throw up his hands and kick out his legs
as if he morphed into a starfish,
an image that came to his mother
who felt it repeatedly inside her,
and then watched the infant born
who would fully react that way
to something he felt and which made him act,

as I hold him now, he almost startles
in how quickly and surely his head and attention shift,

the world full of circus rings,
each of which can be worth his full attention,

when his attention progresses into approval and a smile,
we are undone,

we all come into consciousness as strangers in a strange land,
anthropologists who seek to learn the language and the customs 
of these new people,

Max is on the way to knowing the world and his own body,
and how who he is might interact
with what is and with what can be.

by Henry H. Walker
August 5, ’13

tears aren't enough

the fiery furnace just below

even tears aren’t enough:
consciousness, amid the glory 
that the universe seems to so casually express,
should always lead to soul-shaking awe,
we talk and talk as if to build protective calluses around us: 
cocoons of words to shield us 
from the wrenching power that is true to every moment,

as the sun sets, clouds wrap around us
and weave darkening shades of grey to hold us in,
I linger after others have gone,
I work to see and feel how every branch and stone
is the center of the universe,
as if everything depends 
on one wind shaped branch of fir before me,

I sob as my soul softly touches 
the enduring beauty of the microcosms around me,
and how transient my being here can be,

I often need the calluses so I can keep moving through a day,
I also need to at least briefly touch the fiery furnace just below.

by Henry H. Walker
August 3, ’13

Friday, August 2, 2013

time past and time future, and now?

hidden in the slate

how can any one moment be just that moment?
I guess a drop of water doesn’t remember
when it first came to be
or its life in the sea, or in a dinosaur,

what I seek in a moment
is to appreciate the present
and then to listen to all the back stories I can hear,

science helps as I listen to how rock and tree came to be here,

history helps as I listen to the stories I’ve heard and read,
and I imagine so many more
as I find an old tool and notice a leaving
such as in the subtle shape of an old sled road

or the vision of those who put rock upon rock,

 I like to imagine others here long before me
and to guess at what they saw, at what they felt,

every moment reaches for sure into story after story
that came before and lead to this particular time,
and every moment is also a blank slate
upon which the future will write its stories--

how wondrous and daunting what the slate remembers
and what it still allows to be.

by Henry H. Walker
July 23, ’13

of the East, and the West

the woods can make us forget

here in the East
the forest can make us forget,
it can blur the lines of the land
like how snow rounds away the sharpness of shape,

curtains drawn across whatever is happening,
each individual tree a blur
that shades softly into the whole,
a whole which compresses space into just what is nearby,

out West revelation is brash,
geology right up in your face,

mountains abrupt and intimidating,

and the rock so full of memory it groans,

clarity erupts in front of you,

eagle and bear and bison out there to see,

even the elusive wolf and otter possible to find,

back East the world is more repressed,
rocks and their tales mostly hide away,
large mammals equally secret about their lives and adventures,

high summer has the dreaminess of the lotus about it,
spring shouts of newness and hope,
fall has the grace of memory and resignation,
winter can be bracing and clear,
revealing what’s beneath the leaves, like a x-ray,

now we can sleep, even while we’re awake,
and delude ourselves that the world is only what is nearby.

by Henry H. Walker
July 25, ’13

Thursday, August 1, 2013

at the deepest?

the language of God?

words work in that universe I understand,
they are tools that help me open doors
to people, to thoughts, to feelings, to myself,

words also pattern how I think
as thought and symbol evolve together
in a strange alchemy that serves me in everyday life, 
like Newton’s laws work in the day-to-day,

I am intrigued yet stymied
by the idea that math is the language of God,
that the deepest principles of the deepest physics
only make sense in the language of math,
and that there is no Rosetta Stone
with which any words can fully grasp
the strange majesty of the deepest rules of the cosmos,

at the heart of my meditations
I work to discover the truth that is before we are,
before our words and the worldly spells
that hold us at the surface of what we can know,

math may well be the key to the rules of the physical universe,
yet I still feel that emotions are the key
to bring melody upon those elemental rhythms,
that only consciousness and choice bring meaning:
how the actor, even on quantum levels, matters.

by Henry H. Walker

July 30, ’13