Looking In

I am a flute
And someone is blowing,
I don’t know who.
You, whose lips are pressed against me,
Your breath is cool and sweet.
Play whatever you want.

You are the gold smith,
Golden Eyes-AKPhotoAnd I am a rock.
Push me deep into the fire.
Make me pure.
Then, at the right moment,
Strike with your hammer.
Pay no attention to these tears.
They are just the faint remains
Of something no longer useful.

You are the ocean and I am a fish.
Without color or shape,
You fill every space.
Unable to find You,
I am restless…searching…

Now, You are the executioner,
And I, the condemned.
We share a secrete, You and I.
Here’s my bare neck.
Take your sword and strike, hard!

Free… at last!
Staggering naked through the streets;
Headless and bereft.
Arms flailing.
Wild, urgent gestures.

Trying to say something…something,
Untouched by language.
What no one would believe in a million years,
I will try anyway:

I AM…but…I’m not!
No…I mean I’m not here.
No…I can’t say this right.
I’m just a thought,
But not what I thought.

But wait, there’s something even more!
I am what all thoughts are made of;
Lit by the light of some distant star.
Now I am that light.
Now, I am that star.

You whispered in my ear,
“The mind is like a flame”,
And that was enough.

Just a light tap,
And the burden of being someone;
Of endless time and grasping,
Collapsed,
Under its own unbearable weight.

I looked for You in the bright of day,
You showed up in the night.
When I tried to find You, You disappeared.
When I thought I had reached for You,
You were gone.
Defeated, I give up and walked away.
Then You embrace me from behind.

Here,
Longing and fulfillment are entwined
I can’t tell one from the other.
Did You give rise to my longing?
Or do You exist because my longing made you?
Or maybe You and my longing
Gave rise to one another.
Or maybe my longing is Your own song;
That others might hear, and come.

How am I to name You?
If I call You, “God”,
It sounds like we’re separated.
If I call you “Brahman”,
I’ve only put a name on my ignorance.
If I call You, “Spirit”,
Who even knows what that means?

The same sun in countless drops of dew.
The same moon in countless rivers.
The same beloved in countless faces.
Oh Ancient Friend!
Who is speaking, You or me?

—–Bart Walton

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Posted by | Paul Reynolds
Paul has been a yoga teacher on the Island of Kauai for many years and is the facilitator of the weekly Living the Question Blog - a repository of wisdom and inspiration. Paul also produces and hosts Le Guru is You Radio Show, showcasing everyday gurus.

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