Saturday, November 7, 2015

Contemplative Acts of Laundry

(This chore in our house is something I have to "get around to doing".  It is not something that fills me with anticipational excitement!  This poem is about allowing myself the pleasure of living in the moment while doing the laundry, to allow it to become a contemplative act.  The full stops between the stanzas allow for a pause and also indicate the time frames between the stages of laundry in my house - definitely not an all-in-one activity, but rather done through "stages of contemplation" :-) )

I remove wet laundry from the washing machine
Into my basket, I search for unseen socks
Lining the side of the barrel.
I carry the weighty basket up the passage
Through the kitchen and onto the outside bin.
Then I take the first garment
And choose where I want it to go.
All around me the garden is waiting to be heard,
Asking to be seen.
Every time I hang up my washing there is:
A mountain before me, trees, birds
Chickens cluck clucking, the sky and clouds of the day.
There is fragrance and colour, the whisper
Of a great yellow wood tree
And the invitation of the garden to be noticed.
I feel each garment, and peg, peg, peg
Peg up the laundry with my prayers.
I come back to it dry and take it down
Onebyonebyonebyonebyone draped over my
Great-bundle shoulder.
And I look and notice, look and notice.
I smell the fresh dry smell of the washing.
I take it to the bed and let it fall.
I fold, fold, fold
I feel the creases and press the garments.
I sort and organise, I pack into the cupboards
And breathe in the smell, breathe in the smell
Of the garments now packed away.

J Graser

Artist - Richard Boyer

Feel it, think it, do it!

I feel the way the music
Forms my body into responsive acts of mercy
Mercy to my body looks like this:
No restriction, just listening all the way
Repeating the phrases, lifted arms, legs, hearts
All the way through the music
Into the dance.
I even forget where I am when I am taken so.
Every bit of box explodes off bit by royal bit
It was like everytime my feet gave an involuntary twitch
I knew I could never hold back into the pew ever again.
It was like every time I hear another note
My feet are going to leap into action
And my body is going to writhe and shake
And twist and level the ground!
The music is going to take me and my body
Into places no prayer could ever take me
In my mind.
This dancing body is going to surf the waves
Of every sound as the boxes pop, pop, pop
Off of every muscle, ligament and nerve
And the freedom searches out
The beat in me, and takes me into
Ever new territory of the music dance music
Ever new places to put on my dancing shoes
And feel it, think it, do it!

J Graser

Artist - Margaret Rice Oxley

The Youness of You

Fingerprints all very telling.
You can't get away from your
Snowflake uniqueness
Or the way no two dog's noses are the same.
You're one of a kind
Trying to fill that poor man's shoes
When he can fill his
One of a kind shoes much better.
The trick is to find out what
Your fingerprints are meant to
Stick all over.
Forensic science has got to
Pick up the essence of you
All over the place you
Assign your energy to.
You're a firework prism
Blasting black holes into galaxies.
Inventions of your own style
Creeping through your pores
Are self-lighting bulbs -
All those ideas need a place to roam.
So do it! Be yourself.
Spread your opinion out of the
Cage they tried to shun you into.
There is no cage big enough
Can hold the power in one original thought.
Your DNA plays music heard
Through no one else's veins.
It's a joyful abandon to settle back
Into the youness of you,
To feel the pleasurable zing
Of the skin you're wrapped in.
It's like, what's coming next?
No one else is going to see it the way you do.
You are one beautiful grow up upper
Filling the infinite space of you
With a great big YES,
Born-alive in the nowness of now.

J Graser

Artist - Christian Schloe

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Let my mind climb up the tallest mountain

Little did she know it,
The subtle glance
The not so subtle telling crease in the corner of the eye.
How much had changed,
And change came that time with the sting of a bee
Looking for nectar in the summer flowers.

Everything turned on its head
Did a cartwheel into the future, past, whichever
Direction, jumped on the trampoline
And laughed, what a laugh!
I have never heard such a laugh!

I expected something so different
And all I heard were tears and laughter
Tears and laughter.
All my creases welled up that day
It was sprinkling tears of rain, tears of rain
Into the light of a trampoline day
When everything turns on its head
And says, "What now?"

The sting of these summer days
Has wakened me up, to breathe
And simmer, breathe and simmer.
To let my mind climb up the tallest mountain,
Do a handstand
And accept the upside-downness of
Everything I've come to understand is life.

Birds flying down into the sky
With blood pumping in my brains -
And the rush you get when you get back up on your feet
And suddenly everything becomes crystal clear
And you know which way to go.

J Graser

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Art of Acceptance

In quiet, quietness I hurl a stone
Into the water.
Still, the ripples
The ripples extend
As the stone sinks.

I wait at the shoreline
Until the water
Rests into a reflection
Of clouds, sky, clouds,
Until the water sleeps before me.
Until the water reflects
My body standing by the
Water, in silence.

An occasional breeze
Shimmers the surface,
But the deep is still
The deep is calm.

The stone is on the bottom
Together with the other stones
Anonymous, settled at the bottom
As though it has always been

And yet quivering vibrations of
Unseen molecules within
This anonymous stone
All remember the picking up,
The being held, the moment
Of decision, the being hurled
Into the centre of these
Deep waters.

Rain, wind, snow, rivers, hail
And the water receives it all.
Evaporates a tranquil acceptance.
And after every storm,
The quiet, quietness.

J Graser