The clear cold spring water
Seems to shudder beneath the ice
As breath clouds gather about my face...
No sound welcomes my ears
No thoughts intrude upon the silence.
Walking lightly into the cloud
I close my eyes to see the dragons
Perched like snow on the leafless branches...
There is no easy path without wings
There is a way to fly out of the mind.
Moment-by-moment, the present
Is always assuming the posture of the past
Lifting high the sword of broken memories...
But look! It seems my heart is turning green
But look! Time itself is facing a re-creation.
Intricate lacing branches
Infiltrate the patterns of my mind
And I shiver with their loosening grip...
With no words to admit my fascination
With no fear of whatever lies ahead.
Light and delicate the snow falls
Into a gathering of poets' hands
Weaving dreams with the moving branches...
Only a glittering light upon the ground
Only the gaze of adoration upon my face.
Every atom -- and the entire Universe -- is the manifestation of One Song, vibrating in radiant ecstasy... Listen -- listen! -- settle down within the space between the beats of your heart (the One Heart)... Mystery is chanting the Holy Name -- there -- in that Holy Place, within you within you within you... Aware Now -- awaken! -- you are One with the Infinite, you are One with the Cosmic Consciousness... Rise Up! With this shift in your consciousness, become a Mother now and give birth to a brand new world... One Love... One Love... One Love...
[This poem and meditation began during a walk in the snow on December 9 of this year. It completed itself on the following day at my desk, looking out upon pine trees and falling snow... and the One Love Blessing for every falling memory... For most of the folks that I spent 30 years with in Chinatown Salinas, the holidays are like a punch in the nose, a time of broken memories, of lostness, and the raw awareness that "If I disappeared, no one would ever miss me." That, my friends, is what it really means to be homeless... and for far too many people, that is what it has meant to be human. Even though, for me, I had to endure months and then years of a radical sense of spiritual abandonment, and the crushing loss of family and dreams, that experience did not destroy me (neither did it strengthen me). Rather, it changed me: it caused me to jettison my "big I" and replace it with an increasingly transparent "us": it "shuffled my deck" -- tossing out most of the accumulated cards -- now I just have a small handful of "ones": like, "Only One" and "One Love": and it has centered me in an understanding that you and I, all of the you's and all of the I's, are all yearning for the very same unveiling: "We have been created by Love, for Love, to become Love": this is our secret identity: this is the reason for our existence: and, finally, as we learn to accept, embrace, become, and live this truth our lives will find their fulfillment in radiance. Bliss and One for All! P.S. I want to also mention that when I was at my lowest point, Love walked through the door of my heart and welcomed me home... that precious "Welcome Home" with Michelle is, I believe, a sign, symbol, and sample of what is in store for everyone... Again: "Bliss and One for All!"]
Robert Daniel Smith was privileged to serve the homeless and marginalized for 30 years in Salinas, California. Together with his wife, Michelle, they founded an intentional community called the 'Companions of the Way', also in Salinas. Robert and Michelle are community organizers, Catholic Worker renegades, sacred activists, writers, poets, artists, Divine Mother devotees, and practitioners of Kriya Yoga as taught by Rev. Ellen Grace O'Brian of the Center for Spiritual Enlightenment. Michelle is also a Montessori public school teacher. Robert is also an ordained Interfaith Minister.