Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Kingdom of God

The Kingdom of God is a state of mind,
And if I can follow the anxiety in my chest
Closely enough, faithfully enough,
I might be able to tell you what I mean.

I am most myself when I have nothing to say,
This is the paradox of the writer, the internal
Contradiction inherent in how the Kingdom of God
Exists in the way in which we relate to one another.

Take Jesus, for example, the great mamzer
From Nazareth, who, seeing divine immanence
In the force of the mustard seed or in the power
Of Mary’s yeast, cried out, “Malkhuta delaha!

Kingdom of God! My heartbeat slows
As I talk to you, beloved reader,
As I fold you into this present moment
With my web of convergences, of causal

Synchronicities: bless us, oh Lord, that our minds
May be one with the Truth, and with one another.
Please bless me that a mind like mine be freed...
Or to take another approach, that of dharma,

And its teachers, always pointing to the here-and-now,
Wherein, they say, there is only clarity and luminosity,
No problems, no chaos. I always wonder,
But what if in the moment my father is dying?

Or my lover is breaking my heart? Or I myself
Am breaking her heart, or dying? What then,
Oh wise men, what consolation is mine?
That the Kingdom of God is a state of mind.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Gathering

Oftentimes before I write I lie down and breath into the pores of my body. With intent concentration, I bring the energy of breath in through all the tiny holes in the skin of my toes, my calves, my thighs, my sides, my chest, my face, etc. Even my skull, I can bring the breath in through my skull, and feel my head in its all physicality, and not merely as my idea of my head. Medical science would scoff at my practice of bringing in air through my toes; nevertheless, I do it and it works. My breathing slows down, I synchronize with my heartbeat, and I begin to fall into a state of mind wherein all things are again possible. Only then do I allow my mind to explore its love of stories, only after the gathering. Perhaps on this day my mind thinks of a myth, one in which a girl—certainly a girl—of mixed heritage, perhaps the daughter of an Iranian man and his American wife, born in Queens, comes into our troubled world and sets her heart on saving each and every soul she encounters, one at a time. Using her superpower of imaginative empathy, she walks along the river park and looks into the so-called souls of every passerby. She hears their thoughts and feels their emotions, simply by observing their gait or noticing their posture or looking into their eyes. Once she has chosen her target, she follows him until the time is right, until the life experience in this chosen person has risen to its most intense peak, until all his troubled thought and suffering have come together, have accumulated, have converged on a point—only then does our young superhero make her entrance. Until that precise moment she lies in wait, breathing, watching, gathering her energies, perpetually preparing for her performance.