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Excerpt for Life Remains Choice by , available in its entirety at Smashwords


Title Page


Writings by Sha’Ra On WindWalker

(in collaboration with Sha'Tara EarthStar)


Copyright (©) 2019 Cocoons to Butterflies Publishing


Published by: Cocoons to Butterflies Publishing

Chilliwack, B.C. Canada


Cover picture by: PublicDomainPictures.net


All pictures found on FreeImages.com


Space Picture: ESA/Hubble


I hope you enjoy these writings. Feedback is welcome.


Contents

Title Page

Foreword

Fields Of Dreams

Giants

Grains Of Sand

Impressions Of A Past

Let The World Change You

Life Remains Choice

Life's Dream

Life’s Path

A Peek At The Peak (Of Oil)

Shining Star

Someone Alone

Sacred Dance

Sorrow

Starseed

Talking About The Weather

The Only Constant Thing Is Change

The City

The Sea

The Future Makers...

The Ghost

The Hollow House (An Observation)





Foreword


These books contain a form of free verse poetry, opinions based on observation, and some humour and imagination, engaging the heart as well as the mind. A critical look at many current issues intriguing and plaguing man. Spirituality, interaction with nature and environment, social changes, dwindling resources. Well worn issues now, indeed. But the poetry and other works in these books gives this subject a different perspective. I daresay that here we can find a "higher" vantage point from which to look at ourselves within the cosmos.


Who knows but some of the ideas in the books may get you inspired to do that thing you always wanted to do, even if this comes in a very small way, to make your corner of this world a better place to be in. Who knows but you may realize your little corner is a really nice place to be in after all.


It's all about life, if at times expressing life "outside the box" as the saying goes.




Fields Of Dreams


As dandelion seed-heads

blowing seeds over the land,

creative thoughts

scatter to change the world.

Freely across the surface of the earth

they spread in whispering breezes

of changing times.


Wherever fertile soil is found

they spring,

create new worlds

filled with hope within new hearts.

Of the thought creators,

These are the ones

who long to walk

their fields of dreams.

Giants


As twisted shadows

in shades of night,

giants abide

formless, yet deadly;

threatening, knowing

time is their friend.

Ancient giants,

uncivilized, fearsome,

trampling about

unguarded borders,

ever watchful,

seeking unwary victims.

Confusion, uncertainty, fear;

anger, stress, despair:

where will the attack come from

this time?

I grow so tired of fighting:

couldn't I just let them pass,

turning away

from their baleful eyes,

never again to stare down

their ugly mien,

Yet how could I?

They rule this world

fueling its systems

and I won't become

just another pawn!


Grains Of Sand


In shifting winds

and rising tides

I journey alone,

my soul seeking release,

yearning to return

to another place

vaguely remembered.


Waves crash endlessly

against jagged rocks

inexorably eroding away

these stubborn monoliths


As my body is transformed

by the harsh reality of experience

I find myself reshaped also,

as the storms of life

sift through my scattering remains.


Worn down, transformed,

I find myself freed at last

from the shattered remnants

of an earthly body

and my spirit ascends

to seek a new beginning.

Impressions Of A Past


The camp fires still burn

as ghost dancers step soundlessly

in swirling, spiraling smoke

weaving an old tale across the night sky.


Outside the flickering shadows

of the dwindling night fires

a she-wolf stands alert,

twin points of incandescence

observing the ghost dance unfold

past the meeting point of days.


Sleeping under leather blankets,

the tribe receives the vision

to strike camp and relocate

for the place has become stagnant,

threatened by disease,

discovered by the enemy,

reeking of sudden death.


The shaman, in his dream,

reveals the message of the dancers,

through the motherly instinct of the wolf:

"Go! Break camp, move on

where the she-wolf prowls under pale moon,

where tall trees protect from inclement weather

and hide from dangerous prying eyes;

where water and visions are clear."


In obedience to the voice of Spirit

as in times uncounted,

the morning sun welcomes the tribe

breaking camp, preparing to trek:

no one will turn to look back

upon the weather beaten grass huts

nor the cooking circles

where the smoke still rises

in silent farewell.


Let The World Change You


It seems quite obvious

hardships, pain and suffering

are for most the norm.

It seems equally true

that most who live in rich nations

are quite blinded to this fact -

unless the fact can sell commercial time

and it is splashed on the TV

or headlined in the newspaper -


Ignoring the plight of millions

cannot be so easy, can it?

Apparently, it can.

Just call it “cognitive dissonance.”

Call it lack of empathy.

Call it lack of compassion.

But really, it’s lack of awareness.

I met a fellow-traveller

who had seen many parts of this world,

- not the touristy-type places

splashed as bill-boards on ocean-fronts -

but places where everyday is a struggle

and each struggle, an adventure.


He claimed the people he met

in those skeletal places

changed his outlook on life.

It was there he saw compassion come alive

for the very first time.

It was there people showed him life

is neither about money nor possessions,

nor about finding happiness.


It was there he heard laughter as from a child -

free and sincere.

There he tasted food fully appreciated

and there he found

he could give thanks for life

for each day there is a miracle -

not of survival as many believe

but of joyful acceptance.

Life Remains Choice


A crimson sun dips

beneath a singing ocean:

I hear

that whisper again:

your name in the flowing tide.

How true,

nothing

ever remains the same

as the earth turns.


Will I ever stop believing

that you will return to this cold place

lighting the fire of love

by the simple magic

of one touch?


Without you,

I am but a flicker,

a wavering candle flame

in winter's endless night.


The sky darkens:

I stare at the waning moon:

Old memories: enough already!

In the morning

I shall let the sun's rays

dissipate my despair;

dethrone my demons;

delineate my dance:

I shall turn this page,

start a new creation.


Life remains choice,

even in our greatest losses.


Life's Dream


Night shadows dissipate

in dawn's enchanted songs;

of nature's carefree ways.

Gently she arouses

dormant passions,

intense emotions.


A brilliant light bursts

in my mind's eye:

I see beyond the tunnel

along a path long abandoned.

Now offered freely to my feet,

I choose to follow

this path of life,

this statement of love.


In her garden of flowers;

amidst fragrances unnamed;

my soulmate, my true love

rises to greet me

and remembrance sweeps over me

as her embrace consumes

infinite love's desire.


If I were to be asked,

“What is life about?”

I would respond simply by reading

this poem.


Life’s Path


In the footsteps of the Cosmic breeze,

a soul has blossomed on flowers of rain

who now walks upon ridges of spirit cliffs:

he’s the one who knows, the watcher.


But below, where life’s path is still an arduous choice,

another cries for freedom but finds it not.

Here life calls for unceasing shifts in seasonal changes;

youth’s strength fails with Spring’s passing,

followed by sweaty toil in broiling Summer’s heat.

Comes Autumn’s cool but brief relief

only to be followed by more vagaries

and the uncertain hardships of Winter’s ice and snow

when finally one’s body is laid low.


One can go through these manifold changes,

finding satisfaction in accomplishments and survival,

yet remain quite blind to the greater flow of life

that could be found within an awakened human heart.


A life of pleasure, of angst, of passion, of success:

what does that prove, if all around

injustice and sorrow still rule under the passing sun

and under a moonless darkness, death

brings forth the blackest night?


Yes, death must come, a thief in the night

to steal away all that was accomplished in time -

others will buy the musty manuscripts

on which some great life was scribed or scribbled -

but who so lived will have no choice

but to return upon the wheel to try again, try again!


Each time hoping to find that magic key

that unlocks the door to freedom from

the very last spasm of fate’s desire.



A Peek At The Peak (Of Oil)


The questions before us,

that is, the global community board,

are straightforward, gentlemen:

When will oil reserves peak?

(They already have.)

How much time do we have until then?

(None, obviously.)

What alternatives have we in place

to bring us a new way of life?

(That would be none also.)

What secure source

of alternative energy do we have?

(And none also.)


Ah but the great train of progress

and mindless business

will careen along and go off the track

and we can blame, let's see:

corporatists, capitalists, communists

and let's not forget the socialists;

throw in some aliens... the spotted owl -

global warming, (or is that warning?)

planetary changes, the Mayans:

if there's blame to attach,

the individual is safe, totally safe

to die happy in the dark.


It's not lack of energy - it's

dollar store-drive-through mentality -

for we are no longer people

sharing a small planet in alien space:

we've been promoted to the wonderful

Wall Street Disney Hollywood World status

of consumers. We're Consumers

and our credit cards speak thunderously

of the great power entrusted to us all,

that we may consume everything.


There's a problem with that:

Earth isn't a shopping mall.

It's a finite world, an ecological marvel -

the only one in an entire solar system

and it's been eaten up - consumed -

all but crumbs to war over.

Where else to build

more Wal-Marts and Home Depots?


Now what?


Solar, wind, hydrogen, ethanol?

By comparison to that raw power

of a Middle-Eastern tiger in the tank,

pretty mild alternatives, these.


There's a solution hanging about

near-by in the fringes of our suspicion:

a complete change of individual lifestyle,

not of future,

not of tomorrow,

but of this very moment.

That could prevent collapse.

But not to worry, it won't happen

for the conclusion

from that famous sermon on the

World Class Mound of Garbage

as uttered by a laughing Milton Friedman ghost

says, (and I quote):

Blessed are the brain dead idiots

for they shall die at the wheel of their SUV

and be spared the horrors of tomorrow.


Shining Star


There is a star in the night sky,

one that shines for me alone;

one I have tried to reach,

yet the closer I seem to get,

at certain times,

the farther away it appears

the very next night.

Will I ever reach that star

I have followed so faithfully?


Just then an old man passing by

seemed to read my thoughts:

"I, for one, am thankful,

the star I have been striving for

remains ever out of reach;

then I can continue to seek it,

and in doing so,

I can find countless ways,

to walk through this life.


"When my focus is on that star,

and not on the worlds I pass through,

chances are I will enrich these worlds,

as I use them as stepping stones,

dancing over them lightly

while going on my own way.

The cosmic dancer

does not desecrate the stage

nor step falsely to the music --

she is the dance!"

Someone Alone


Someone walks

alone along the freeway

searching for 'returns'

to sell a dealer

for smokes and pet food.


someone stands

alone on a corner

the sign says:

"I need work, please?"

hoping without hope.


someone runs

alone and breathless,

fleeing the scene

the blood and cold

of murder and fear.


someone crouches

alone by a locked door -

battered and torn,

tear-filled eyes closed:

no one opens.


someone shuffles

alone in thought

towards the faraway desk

to be dismissed with a shrug:

"Not eligible -next!"


someone lies

alone in rain-soaked death

behind the hardware store:

"Another damned O.D.!"

the only eulogy.


someone postures

alone, though surrounded

in laughter, lies and money

the rich one's entourage

designer of human misery.


someone wanders

alone and scared many years

the light of love

gently opens darkened thoughts:

life streams in.

Sacred Dance


Arousal from the caress of gentle hands:

soft skin becoming firm;

two beings sharing energy

in a surging flow of love

from one body to another,

a sacred dance of the heart,

a moment of pleasure,

a spark of joy released.


When love-making reaches

the point of orgasmic bliss;

when with tears and knowing

they bond together,

body to soul, soul to body,

lying on soft green moss,

reveling in their earthly energy,

their unbound power:

is this not one of the highest ways

two could ever honour

God,

Creator,

Mother,

Earth

in short, Life?

Sorrow


What is this thing we label “sorrow” -

this bottomless pain of the heart

we feel at the worst of times?

Sorrow - emptiness - lostness -

here, nothing gives pleasure;

nothing satisfies; nothing -

only the endless ache,

no comfort, no place to hide.


What to do when sorrow

suddenly claims a piece of life?

Are we helpless?

Victims of circumstances

that only time can heal?


Ah, but is time such a great healer?

Observe: do the old get better?

No, time does not heal - time kills -

a bit faster in sorrow!

What to do, then?


Sorrow is a double-edged sword,

one edge jagged and rough,

that is the selfish sorrow -

the one that leaves a raw cut

which every little aggravation

exacerbates;

one edge sharp and smooth:

this is the great Cosmic sorrow -

when one's sorrow is all-sorrow,

no longer a burden, but a part of life

and this sorrow, if understood

becomes the stuff of joy.


Sorrow may slice through the heart:

we choose either the murderer's blade

or the surgeon's scalpel.


Starseed


Waking from a gentle dream

I behold a strange world

spread out before my eyes

in ever-brightening hues.

I stretch my arms to the sky

and begin to dance freely

to the music of the stars;

the sun and moon join in

and following their laughter

I spin freely around the world.


From the distant horizon

A silhouette beckons

and I hear laughter

as the breeze teases her hair

and I walk to her lightly

heart beating, knowing:

my twin flame, lost companion

of times beyond time

encouraging my uncertain return...


She takes my hand in hers

and together, laughing, dancing

we step from planet to planet;

from galaxy to galaxy

and reaching what seems the end

are universes stretching out,

stepping stones for joyful feet

through pulsating space.


Transported by the joy of love

we make ourselves as one again

poised to enter our now time

while the children are asleep:

gently, I take her in my arms

and the fears, tears and years

are re-absorbed and vanish.



Talking About The Weather


The weather:

It's not what shapes our lives

but a 'safe' topic that provides

inexhaustible discussion material.

Whether we know it or not,

there is always more than enough weather

to fill any conversation.


There's a bonus to talking about weather:

it is generally believed no one

can influence its course,

whether they'd like to or not.

Therefore, no blame can be attached

when speaking of the weather,

and that makes it a great greeter:

How about that weather, huh?

Yeah, it's really something, isn't it.


Also, weather topics

cannot degenerate into gossip;

or be considered secret.

Imagine someone coming to you

and whispering conspiratorially:

"Did you know? It's raining out!"

And you turn in shock and whisper,

"You don't say! How disgusting.

How could they let that happen!"


So you see that is why

people love to talk about the weather

whether there's any point to it

and there really never is.

So what's my point?

How can intelligent creatures

waste their lives addressing a subject

that has no point at all?


You may have to wear rubber boots

to slosh through wet snow

but no danger of getting in too deep

talking about it:

Internal weather is quite shallow -

and safe.

The Only Constant Thing Is Change


See dawn break,

over pink topped mountains;

notice a rare flower open

to welcome the morning sun,

fearless of the unknown

implied in any new day.


Open new possibilities,

at every moment:

welcome this change

moment to moment,

know its purpose - or know it not,

life in motion.


Like that rare flower,

it pays to remember,

the only constant thing

life is sure to give is change.


In love greet

change with open heart

for when open to change,

any thing is possible,

anything...

and here's a bonus:

accept the small change,

you'll always have some money in hand.

The City


I thought I'd write

something powerful,

beautiful,

about the city:

I thought I'd write

about big stores and malls,

giant buildings,

parkades, skywalks, elevators

one-way streets and sidewalks,

colorful people walking,

children in tow, laughing.


I was all ready to write

when someone laughed,

an ugly, cynical laugh:


Well, no... maybe I'll wait.

I'll go down to skid row

tomorrow;

then visit the city jail;

take in a court case or two

and next week

I'll write about the city.

The Sea


The wild easterly sweeps from the open sea;

gray ocean waves batter a gravelly shore,

their white-crested manes tossed

like some watery hell stallions galloping,

neighing their freedom; thundering madly

over a heaving, frothy wintery moor.


Whipped snow and sand hiss among brown grasses

mixing brown sugar puddings, drifting, filling,

mercilessly driving shorebirds from shelters.

Plaintively peeping to one another

these seek new refuge among standing rocks.


White gulls glide on motionless pinions,

skirting lashing waves, crying;

black cormorants in rapid wingbeats

skim the green tempest purposefully

diving out of sight in rolling trenches.


Scavenging along the thunderous beach

turnstones and black oystercatchers

seek their allotment of daily sustenance

among tortured seaweed and rolling gravel

occasionally bashing to its death

a small crab flung high upon the shore.


From a distant rock hidden by driven clouds

a mournful horn blares its warning:

!warning!!warning!!warning!...

warning passing trawlers and freighters to

!stay away!!stay away!!stay away!!


The storm rages unabated

its perceived violence proving once more

that in contest between man and sea

primordial force will always possess

the last word upon this magical world.


The Future Makers...


Who

are the future makers?


Are they the ones

who

dare to dream

dare to think,

dare to live,

dare to see,

dare to walk

dare to question?


Who

dare to dream new dreams,

dare to think new thoughts,

dare to live life upside down,

dare to see the new in the old,

dare to walk the unknown

dare to ask new questions?


Who

are the future makers?


The Ghost


Always pulling to the dark side, always;

the black clouds fit our mould so well,

shaping our evanescent, misty lives!

The phone rings: another old friend

depressed, lonely, lost, afraid

in fevered mind drugs no longer numb.


"Hi! I know, it's been a long time--

do you remember who this is?"

"Sorry, no, I don't. You must have

dialed a wrong number by mistake."


"It's me, Phil: don't you remember?

The demonstrations, the peace marches?

Phil, it's Phil!" Desperate, slurred words,

incoherent speech, childlike hope.


So sad, I feel, even if I don't connect:

I pretend long enough, just enough

for the past to reclaim its portion

of memory no longer used or wanted:

the long forgotten, undesired past;

its ghosts abandoned, forgotten so long.


"It's Phil! It's Phil!" cries the ghost

like the stab of a knife in my heart.

"Yes, I remember now... Phil. I remember

and I won't forget again, I promise."


If only I can make the black clouds

part just long enough tomorrow

to admit a shaft of light from the sun

and make the ghost come alive again!

We're having coffee together tomorrow,

the ghost and I, until another day

when another ghost, not so old or tired,

disembodied, free, may join us:

His youngest sister has cancer.

"The Hollow House" (An Observation)


I pass by in time and wonder

at that house beside the winding road

abandoned for many years

empty hollow and mute tribute

to a family severed from its natural roots

disappeared without a trace


It sits in a small meadow

green mould growing in vinyl siding

grass once a green lawn

scattered with children's toys

and puppies snarling over bones

now a tangle of weeds fallen over covering all

broken rotten toys and old bones


The windows stare in stark emptiness

upon a blind world driving by un-heedful

dirt covers the panes

blinds and drapes falling

bit by bit and piece by piece

to be replaced by the eternal grime

that reduces man's passage

to primal dust in the book of time


The people in that house had a god

they worshipped in weekend rituals

the common god of this land

a god of pleasure fed by death

a household god of taste and stomach

powerless to prevent loss or ease pain

and standing testimony to that god

a leaning idol in the front yard

still stands the dark and rusty barbecue




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