Friday, December 16, 2016

Kabir - Neither am I...

Neither am I righteous nor non-righteous
Neither am I an ascetic nor a sensualist
Neither do I speak nor do I listen
Neither am I a servant nor a master

Neither am I constrained nor liberated
Neither am I sad nor jubilant
Neither am I distinctly isolated from anything
Nor am I identified completely with anything

Neither do I go to the world of hell
Nor do I proceed to the world of heaven
All actions are really my actions
But yet I am distinct from the actions

This truth only a rare exceptional one realizes
Such a person sits in quiescence
Oh Kabir don't bring forth any creation
And don't efface anything either.


Clare Blanchflower - Stay Close

 Stay close
so close
to experience
Rest in presence
Hurry not
to think
to express
to share
to conceptualise
Give not this moment
to the mind

Be with your Self
Feel the resonance of
Here Now
Watch the landscape
of consciousness
with curious eyes
as the
I of awareness

Allow happening
to happen
Be with it
Never leave
the moment
for a fantasy future
or dramatic past
Be with the aliveness
of Now
Feel your heart beat
with life’s
rich flow

Stay close
and see
every tender thread
of life
is the warp and weft
of your own
Your true

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Jiddu Krishnamurti - Try it!

"Sir, try it. Live for one day, one hour, as though you were going to die, actually going to die the next hour. If you knew you were about to die, what would you do? You would gather your family together, put your money, your little property in order, and draw up a will; and then, as death approached, you would have to understand all that you had been. If you were merely frightened because you were dying, you would be dying for nothing; but you would not be frightened if you said, “I have lived a dull, ambitious, envious, stupid life, and now I am going to wipe all that totally from my memory, I am going to forget the past and live in this hour completely.” Sir, if you can live one hour as completely as that, you can live completely for the rest of your life. But to die is hard work - not to die through disease and old age, that is not hard work at all. That is inevitable; it is what we are all going to do, and you cushion yourself against it in innumerable ways. But if you die so that you are living fully in this hour, you will find there is an enormous vitality, a tremendous attention to everything because this is the only hour you are living. You look at this spring of life because you will never see it again; you see the smile, the tears, you feel the earth, you feel the quality of a tree, you feel the love that has no continuity and no object. Then you will find that in this total attention the ‘me’ is not, and that the mind, being empty, can renew itself. Then the mind is fresh, innocent, and such a mind lives eternally beyond time."


Lee van Laer - I have a suitcase

I have a suitcase
Packed with many things.
But myself, I’m empty,
Without a clue, no place to go,

No ticket.

No tag to mark a destination.

It’s a fine suitcase
With good things in it;
Paid for with hard-earned cash.
Others are impressed.

In the morning, the suitcase
Is ready to go anywhere I go;
Just zip it up. I carry it
From place to place.

But I’m still me; still empty
Nothing fills me but my life
Which cannot be fit
In suitcases.

Despite this understanding,
I think to myself:
I should have bought larger.
Much, much larger.

It doesn’t matter, though,
I suddenly remember.
I’m emptiness;
Will stay that way


 Lee van Laer, Senior Editor of Parabola holds a degree in fine art and is a professional in the textiles industry. He is also a writer and a musician. For more information, please visit 

Monday, December 12, 2016

Jane Cook Barne - Springbrook Prairie Summer Night

A bank of purple cloud presses the sunset
down, down into fire and golden light.
Up from the land rises Darkness. 
At the horizon there is a little string
of highway lights, commercial buildings
marking their place against the oncoming night
But here in the overlook I am encompassed by it.

The color of the bee balm standing straight
along the mowed edge of the meadow
fades to lavender gray and then to
no color I can see.  The shapes of plants
and a single tree hold their own
against the burning sky.  Lightning bugs
appear. Their signaling occurs in the margins of my view: 
I turn to them and they are gone, to wink again
in another place.
I am sending out my signal, too,
into the universe like they are,
to a face I only imagine, one
I hope into existence, who will see and love
my light, little though it is,
tentative and timid in the dusk,
but trusting the power of the darkness
to let it shine.

 Jane Cook Barnes lives and teaches in Naperville, Illinois (USA), where the midwestern landscape and the
lives of her family give energy to her poetry.