Evening Vespers

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The clouds gathered

Like a host of angels

At the dusk of day

Welcoming me home

While the crickets 

Held their nightly

Choir practice.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

Missing Meraki

meraki

In my head

Words fall clumsily

Bruising the soul

Of expression

Lumps

In my throat

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

*photo from

 http://www.buzzfeed.com/danieldalton/ever-embasan?utm_term=.lsL4ZlpOY#.uty4b4Q99

Self Exploration

antique bottles

Want ripped a hole

Into the pocket 

Of my life

I lost a lot 

Of energy

To the nickels

And dimes

Of dramatic emotion

Now I empty

My pockets

Everyday

So that 

I can be free

To explore

My true nature

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

*photo found on  

https://www.etsy.com/shop/leapinggazelle?ref=unav_listing-r

Becoming Rain

rain1

the tears

i shed

yesterday

have become

rain

“In one of my former lives I was a cloud. The cloud had a nice time in the sky, travelling around and looking down. A cloud is sometimes transformed into rain, and when the rain comes, the cloud isn’t scared to death. The cloud knows that the rain is something very exciting too. So, instead of crying, the cloud begins to sing and becomes the rain falling on fields and into the rivers.”

“If we look deeply we see that the nature of a cloud is also the nature of no birth: The cloud does not come from nothing. It has come from the water in the river and ocean. It has come from the heat of the sunshine. You know that the birth of a cloud is a poetic image. The cloud is simply a new manifestation. Before being a cloud, the cloud has been many other things. Our true nature is the nature of no birth and no death. Birth and death are notions that cannot be applied to reality, because there is nothing that can be born from nothing, and there is nothing that can become nothing at all. The meditation practice of looking deeply will bring about insight. It will dissipate our fear and our despair.”

-Thich Nhat Hahn

*art by Omer Agam (digital artist and graphic designer)

The Heartbeat of All Things

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Listening

To the sacred

Within

Sighs brush by

While words

Silently wait

In the stillness

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A stillness

Pouring

Into emptiness

Existence ceases

To have meaning

Ideas fade into

The Unknown.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

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“People are very afraid of nothingness. When they hear about emptiness, people are also very afraid, but emptiness just means the extinction of ideas. Emptiness is not the opposite of existence. It is not nothingness or annihilation. The idea of existence has to be removed, and so does the idea of nonexistence…When you practice looking deeply, you see your true nature of no birth, no death; no being, no nonbeing; no coming, no going; no same, no different. When you see this, you are free from fear. You are free from craving and free from jealousy.”  -Thich Nhat Hanh

The Poem

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I looked

In every place

All these years

Except my heart

I listened

To the noise

all around

Except my voice

I smelled

the tales

between pages

Except my story

I tasted

 Of earth’s

abundance

Except my soul

I touched

the vibrance

of life

Except my spirit

Now

I will be

the POEM.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

Holding the Fear

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The weight of words

Rest heavy

On my head

But I don’t have

To be anything

except

who I AM

Because

Love

holds 

the fear

So that

can 

breathe.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015