"My Mind is a monastery, and I am its monk."--John Keats.




Let us give thanks for the day,

howbeit gray;               

Let us greet the matins of May,    

not too gay; 

Let us hear the creator say,

in its gray eye;

Thanks be to creation's lord,

gray day in God's May.






Consuelo sings a tune of solitude,

While washing away the munchkins' milk

Filled with mulch of chanting padres at four,

No savoring rising pepper fumes,

No favorite silks and almonds of Samarkand,

Suffers fondling hibiscus lady in fecund soap,

Bubbles bursting up on her brownie down.

Alas, from aloft five or so meters high,

Almond-eyed le père abbot seeks inspiration

Celestial in the nightingale's furled vesper sky,

Twattling valence by the father's wafted window,

Seeking solace from profuse perspiration,

Whiffing the solemn, slow nether incense,

Seeking cooling words in chanting holy, holy,

Seeking his creator and samadhi solely.

When lo! Consuelo comes into view

To pitch le père's virtue into the pew.

Instead of his penance on the marble altar,

He beheld her midnight locks as his psalter.

Such a view unparalled since the resurrection,

Lent poor father a fig for human protection,

That there arose such a vision in the serge

No mortal monk and creator can ever merge.

Caught with his shift in forward position,

Father Manfred fled soundly the inquisition

Down to the brook caressing the abbey's wall,

Where Consuelo blossomed, her hair in barbaric fall.

There amid her spidry strands strafing his eyes,

Le père abbot said contrition in absolving sighs,

Praying "Sanctus, Sanctus" as the abbey bell rings,

Perfervid Christus benedictus as Consuelo sings.

Benedictus qui venit...qui venit.  Amen.




Le Père Bonn 

Blackrobes in tandem read brief Ave's,

Academe's preachers they accomplished,

And amid twilight's celestial beamings

Shrines of sepulchral gone voices shone

In gold casings of tinted glass shieldings.

Written in encrusted bronze on oak

Beneath the gaping gab of le père Bonn,

Eyes envisioned pendant blue in decayed

Amber forlorn a look that dared speak,

But uttered not phrases from this world.

Attenuated from inferior regions and beyond

The words "I bespeak armies" sank into the

Soaked wood where the terms glowed lively

As though uttered by the familiar old face

Who had taught le père abbot tongues

Long dead--laughing, grief and anguish--

le père Bonn whose vacant gab had mastered

Tongues on the fair fields of Aegean Sparta.

Never such a spectacle in Celtic plains of goth

Songs long unspoken by mere mortal youth.










Face Judithae

Locks of graceful sunlight sleep darkly,

Pages turn tawny in sweet William's plays,

Dashing tongue of King Richard and roses,

Where love and kingdom reaffirm each

Other in bonds of perilous bi-covered

Night, a play within a play, never played,

Lovers, a plot barely begun, a love touched.

Time's gem never prismatically transmuted

Where light dances white to purple pane.

Two hearts dance in the darkness of English

History, and the indwelling sun of love

Never played on a harp brought to tune,

Never strummed in melody, lilies conceived,

Never borne through winds of consummation,

Into time from dim shades between the king's

Covers, lost for thrice unfolded decades,

King and queen and uncrowned child lost

Amid the annals of Lemuel's love odyssey.

Cry for the lost princess of Locksley shire

Whose beauty turned the oceans to fire,

Cry to her sunlit crown alive but unmoving,

Touch the eternal locks entangled in umbra,

Clamped to his love eternal, lost in shadow,

Whose blue rose burns to its own desire.





Sed Libera Nos A Malo

In nomine Domini a christu qui Krakowe venit.

Time fractions ripple Puccini's "qui son?"

Le père abbot senses the disembodied cries,

Old warrens of Sinai and Diaspora eternal,

Mingled as one in Lithuanian trembled rubble.

No tiara then, no vociferation now, 

Descended and decadent,  medieval nea,

Dialectically  weary of faults unattested.

Paucities count o'er threescore, teeth and ice.

Le père abbot winces in history's meditations.

Lauded in ante-pyre funereal paean, old man

Lost, church without religion, credo aghast,

Without a church, ghost unto an eternal dance,

Dawn doused and granite chiseled sepulchre.

Le père abbot was there in Casablanca time,

Is here in matrix time, scampering from Warsaw,

To audit the digital display of binary mumbled

Mincing,  jagged snow climbs and winter's wafers.

Le père abbot gleans the eyeless, inverted rood.

His bowed, tonsured pate bedeviled in prayer,

Hands veined purple in gospel chants alone:

Time enfranchised in a default setting.

Sed libera nos a malo. This could be the beginning.

Et ne nos inducas.  Amen.  Default.  Amen. 





Fall settles on old leaves in the foggy five string dew;

Monkey balls bounce off the opus dei of St. John Nopate,

As father abbot seeks gloria,  the weltzeit's quinoline dawn.

Et deus dixit, et pater ludens watches the ambling doe

Dance with dappled feet onto the oak leaves, no scent,

No prints for men to follow, all silent in the cloister of morning.

Et dies incipit russet tails swirl a scampering madness

In limbs of scabbard hickory bark, lone ferrets' eyes.

Dawn overstepped fabrics of coal scenting amber frets.

Adoramus te in spectu gloriae trains of supple toes

Forage apple sweets and dainty tendrils amid god's greens.

Notes of droplets strum the oak veins in falling picks;

Bluebirds task the ferrule for water honed in bluegrass.

Le père abbot asks what is the moment, the nexus,

Between a dying September and a nascent October?

The juncture is the ferrule around my shepherd's crook,

Strung between the exhalation and the inhalation...Om,

Vesper sparrow, sing incipit dies, the baptism of cold dawn,

Self conceive in the nexus, decalcify fossils eternal;

Rejuvenate matter in the warp fields of antimatter,

Moi unto nonmoi, I perceive no shadow in the doe's eyes.

The term of the night meets the nettle mist of incipient day;

Acorns drop strumming lucent oils, thinning strands in time.

I wonder, my father, if love for all hearts be thine or mine;

I ask the robin's blessing, opus dei, Monday coming down.





L'Arbor Bodhi 

Karma blooms afresh, lonely street of angels,

Baked brown in languid layers of magnified air;

Early upstreams to Thebes and four-nickles Melrose;

I recall red bookshelves, the left cedar Bodhi tree,

Welcoming souls to leathered temple mount springs.

Trees and gods at its base, incarnations, two pilgrims,

Souls whisked by time's feathers, a dusty niche.

Carving with intrepid mantras cowhide taj mahals,

Pain and joy in spiritu dei two rosewood sentinels,

Forms we carriage in strength our weaknesses.

Now and for a thousand kindred moments,

Potter's wheels mold into Leonid shaman clay,

Urns we breathe, our souls fashioned Bodhi banter,

Created dual engendered, one by disparate branches.

Sunset to Palisades we drove by Leander's straits;

Potter's urns of eternity, parted never touching,

Together, ever separated, smoke-wreathed circles.

Sitting, the yogi smiles, our duality one being.

La Cienega parts Bodhi leaves;  the night air is dense.

Melrose's berry, the Hollywood temple, ananda.

Javaji bathi, our lungs full, brown smile on carpet walls;

Ananda, the two streams meet in Melrose moments.

Centuries passed, pines arose, lone actuary of gem nadir,

A via brevis begotten by a long wanderlust--here.

The magus returns silver;  the priestess returns gold;

Ashes Mahatma, thy embrace, thy life endures--one mind.

Still brown eyes pace for that dreamy Melrose Nazareth;

Haunting gray eyes are rain, tears of the Bodhi root.

Le père abbot remembers: the Rood and the Bodhi are one.

I am who I am then; I am who I was now, forever on Rigel.

Siva first sensed toujours l'étranger--was, is, to be--at dawn;

Krishna  zithered Jai Ma on tilted chairs along the Ganges;

Le père abbot sang Pax et Caritas in the Benedictine mass.

Tous nos ésprits chantant miserere nobis down monastery walls.

Je suis le père abbot: tu-elle, je-il, nous-lui. 

Gautama rides again.  The eighth day.

The pipal tree...her suffering is my ignorance.

Eternal face among the shelves, Hero bears the cup.

Om.  Benedicite.  Om.

Salve.  Amen.  Shantih. 





Revenit Idem

When I hear rain falling

Against the ashen window

Thru my cell of prayer in din,

I think of sand burned to

Mirrors into my century's

Serge; an inverted masque

Imprints the face's being,

Paradox of dry grains on

Saturated tears as creation's

Masque vacates into eternity.





Father Abbot, Fiddler on the Cloister











Pater Differentia Rerum

On my prayer floor

Is a void in bubble.

I see its nothingness

Apparently jutting more,

As thought would speak,

To this fiddle antique,

Some antedeluvian song

In ancient Latinic strain,


Once refrained, not well,

In ancient Chartres' bellfry.

Enhancing, it envelopes

The room and my prayers.

I am inside the void bubble,

Now, and I am lost in time.

Old friends are lost;

Old myths are yet untold.

My vespers ring softly,

Unknown churches ring out

Muffled, seamless songs.

Nameless priors pass

Before my mirror in instants.

The void shrinks until

I am the void

Outside the bubble.

God is my very form;

I become the creator's senses.

The maistro plays the bow;

I am god's unholy instrument.

Mea culpa. Miserere nobis.