living proof

if I may be anything
let me be living proof

that one can feel
the unbearable darkness
yet be whole in Spirit;

that intermittently
through the dark
will be moments of blinding light

& to be overcome
by the weight of it all
does not make you wrong

does not make you unholy
unclean
or unworthy

most of all
it cannot take the light from you.

let me be living proof
that you can be
both light & dark

it doesn’t make you crazy

it just makes you
a fervent student of acceptance;

you cannot control the darkness
nor can you banish it forever

but you can decide
to receive the light
to clear a space for it

invite it
with prayer
reflection
or tokens
of your most precious
memories & dreams;

clearing the space
may be messy
maddening
& seem
like more of a mess
than when you started

(clearing
is not the same
as cleaning)

but you’ll know you’ve cleared space
if inside it feels lighter
if you can breathe easier
if you feel you’re not alone
& despite the shadow
that trails behind
you’re ready
to carry on.

meet me there

we must experience suffering
to release it in the magic of creation.

that’s what real art
conveys:

this tension
this opposition
between what hurts us
& what moves us.

what touches us
& makes us catch our breath;

when life slows to a halt
& the message becomes clear;

when exhilaration gives way to exhaustion
& breathless reunion gives way to solitude:
meet me there.

it begins with a deep breath
and goes something like this….

beyond happiness

maybe it’s a relief to be unhappy
because trying to be happy all the time is exhausting.

maybe there’s a place beyond happiness and unhappiness.

not between.

not in the middle.

BEYOND.

BEYOND = accepting both happiness and unhappiness.

they are part of every day.

expect them.

you don’t have to welcome them.

you don’t have to be glad to see your old friend unhappiness.

but if you’re upset, be upset.

if you need to cry, cry.

maybe if you allow them to be there
your tears will dissolve.

remember, your tears won’t dissolve into happiness.

don’t fall into that trap—
doing your spiritual work and still waiting for perfect happiness.

my hope for you is that you come to a place where you’re unhappy—
and THAT’S OKAY.

you haven’t done anything wrong
unless being human is wrong.

do not mistake peace for happiness.

peace is not a utopian state of ecstasy, pleasure or even comfort.

peace “goes beyond understanding.”

i can tell you this much—you know it when you feel it.

your heart settles
and your body is lighter.

gravity is less of a burden.

and even if things aren’t good, they’re still alright.

no matter what, my hope for you
is that you find a place inside yourself
BEYOND yourself
where you can finally rest.

dear dreamer

the world needs its story-tellers
dreamers
lovers
wordsmiths
artsmiths
quiet helpers
kindness-doers
flower-pickers
letter-senders

creators of all sorts
walks
shapes
& sizes.

If you are one of these
yield to yourself
& the creativity that lives
in you--

do not hold out the world.

for it needs your gifts
it needs your love
it is thirsty for your joy.

write on

How lucky we are to be literate! Alive on paper! Free to scrawl, scribble, ink, jot, scratch, type! Writing is freedom. Literacy is liberty. To invent, to let the mind wander, to explore the last human freedom. Does your blood flow in ink? Does your heart beat in keystrokes? Does your speech only barely do justice to the sprawling wonderland behind your eyes? Write on, fellow writer. Write on.