Saturday, March 24, 2012

A Friday Morning Devotional in Iglesia Evangelica Metodista

Los Angeles, Costa Rica
March 16, 2012; revised November 23, 2015
to Virgita and her congregation

Listen.      Echoes intermingle here 
on the inside of a sweet instrument 
projecting love with Latin flair, 
where hearing is whole body and fuego 
is a dance not confined to Domingo
where decibels carry fevered joy deep 
into small town nights.

Staccato hammer, hum of weld 
that build and bind the world outside 
are amplified within these walls 
from tile floor to high eves and hiding 
bats, they bounce back through, 
they permeate the empty rows 
of wooden pews. 

The world intrudes on sacred space, 
its hardened tones accentuate 
the soft voice that weaves a world 
of wise fools who bind the blessed 
earth and sky with bold themes 
and threads of hope 

While high above, inside each pause 
between rude strokes and spoken 
words, bright notes proclaim to those 
who hear what gospel truth wild 
birds can sing. 

And some hear more – a living spring 
wells up from nothing pouring forth 
between the notes with cleansing 
uncontained by culture, unconstrained 
by earnest creed. 

So dance my love with fire and joy: 
the emptiness, awash with angels, echoes 
silent thoughts of God. Just listen, love 
with body, soul and mind of faith 
to hear its roar.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

An Overture for Adam in Strings and Sax

Athens, Georgia
March 7, 2012

1. Overture

Quantum strings will always sing assigned frequencies, set pieces undergirding all we are below the threshold of ever knowing with songs that constrain matter to the dance of chance and brute necessity, inert bodies compelled by contingency, brains of beasts bullied by what came before, no foretaste of freedom here where what is not forbidden, that very thing required, enforced in times before the turning, when God’s honey-voiced servant graced the Garden and woke new worlds of choice and shame.

Ah, that siren-serpent
blows jazz notes, riffs
below the threshold of thinking
where blood rises unbidden
and neural circuits
form and bind
strange loops map symbols as Adam sings names
the beasts of field
and birds of air
in the holy dance
of fire and abstraction
by the shade of the forbidden tree that towers mid-garden
stepping lightly
to syncopated serpent-rhythm
looping, loosening, catching
incipient mind finds the symbol for mind
regards itself
staring back, sucked
into consciousness, shatters
the looking glass, falls through the face of infinity
gone the garden, forever
emerging to indeterminacy
with pounding temple and tart aftertaste of awareness
at last.

2. Postlude:

Celestial strings 
        sing peaceful themes 
                to a strident world 

of autonomous souls 
        locked in the logic 
                of Sun Tzu and Hobbes 

until sweet chords 
        call forth a latent 
                angel-nature, carved 

below the folds 
        of growing minds, 
                molded by God 

and game theory 
        over eons of anguish 
                to deny the tribal

serpent inside 
        and bend the steel 
                arc of history 

by slow degrees 
        toward the peaceable 
                kingdom which somehow 

shines, born 
        from abstraction 
                to everyday lives 

of  kindly sinners 
        and sweat-stained saints 
                who swing to strings 

and alto sax, freed 
        from necessity 
                to fall, or rise.