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Poetry

Poetry is one of the most powerful forms of writing because it takes the English language, a language we believe we know, and transforms it. Suddenly the words do not sound the same or mean the same: the pattern of the sentences sound new and melodious. It is truly another language exclusively for the writer and the reader. No poem can be read in the same way, because the words mean something different to each of us. For this reason, many find poetry and elusive art form. However, the issue in understanding poetry lies in how you read poetry. Reading it logically results in an overall comprehension, rigid and unchanging. However, reading it emotionally allows the nuances and paradoxes to enter our understanding. Anyone who writes poetry can attest, you have to write it with an open heart. 

All poems are insights into the most intimate inner workings of the writer's mind and soul. To read it coldly and rationally would be shutting the door on the relationship that the writer is attempting to forge with you. Opening your heart to poetry is the only way to get fulfillment from it.

If you imagine poetry as a journey, you must be willing to trust the writer to guide you. Unwilling readers will never experience every part of the adventure in the same way open minded readers do. The journey may be filled with dead ends 
 and suffering or endless joy and happiness. And still, you go. You pick up the poem, you read, you listen, and you feel.
 

Excerpt from THE IMPORTANCE OF POETRY by Adeline Frecker (Odyssey)

 

 


At the moment I am in the midst of teaching some of my students about the power of ego and our fond attachment to thoughts. The American poet Dorothy Hunt knows a little about this. I invite you to settle the body with a couple of deep breaths and connect to the heart before you start to read.

We don’t read and write poetry because it is cute. We read and write
poetry because we are members of the human race.

/ ROBIN WILLIAMS /

A CALL TO BE MY SELF

 

A call to be myself.

Can I be myself?

Sometimes I feel that shiver that I cannot.

Don’t we say: if only the world was like this… or if only I had this…. or if only she was like… Or, if only he would be more…

I’d be OK?

 

Hazrat Inayat Khan says, The whole tragedy of life is losing sight of one’s natural self. The greatest gain in life is coming in touch with one’s real self.

 

The truth is, the real self, most of the time, is covered.

With a veil of sorts.

Covered with ego, ever seeking wants, strong desires and delusions.

We’re always seeking, seeking, and yet forever hungry for this or that.

 

So, what gets in the way of our true nature?

What gets in the way for us to be strong and to be our natural self?

 

And I’m not talking about being pure or good.

I’m talking about our path to ease and freedom where our real self is revealed.

 

Most of the time we’re only conscious of our false self.

It’s a real risk to let go of the things that shield us from being a real self:

the things we grab onto. We cling to. Got used to.

 

Rumi says somewhere, “When have we ever been less by dying? “

And he’s not talking about end-of -life death year.

 

He speaks to some part of us that has become identified which false adulation.

He’s talking about what needs to fall away.

What needs to die so we can be our real self?

You might now ask next time you come across that feeling of not being your real self…

Does the next behaviour, or speech

make you bigger

or smaller?

 

~Karen Waddell

2024

(On listening to my mentor Saki Santorelli)

 

 

 

 

Tendrils of Mind​

No matter how many words 
arise in your mind,
or how many places 
its musings travel;​

No matter how many 
thoughts or opinions 
it clings to,
how many attachments
to how many stories;​

No matter how many shoots
called projections or memories,
or how many judgments
it imagines are true;​

There is one single tendril
wound round all the others,
that must be unwound
if you want to be free;​

The last one to drop
is the one you most cherish,
the one that insists
its productions are real;​

The tendril that causes
all of your suffering?
The one that holds tightly 
to a thought called "me."

- Dorothy Hunt is the founder of the San Francisco Center for Meditation and Psychotherapy,

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