Poetry Archives Index




POETRY by Blake Stele

file # 2





                         ABOUT OUR SECRET MINISTRY

                         A LEGEND   

                         ALL THE CAST I CARE FOR LOVES THE THEATRE

                         AND THE LAST ENEMY TO CONQUER IS...


                         A SMALL LESSON ABOUT WRITING

                         AT A SCHOOL OPEN TO HEAVEN



                         BE YE HOLY AS I AM CREATIVE AND




                         CALLING POETS

                         CONCERNING CHRIST JESUS

                         CONCERNING HONESTY

                         COULD YOU PERHAPS BELIEVE ME?





                         EVERY SOUL CAN BE A LILLY



                         HE WHO HOLDS THE SEVEN STARS


                              (On the death of the Pious)

                         HOW AN APPLE TREE CELEBRATES



                         I AM GRIEVING MY FATHER'S LOSS

                         I BELIEVE

                         I HAVE A PLACE HERE




                         JOINT HEIRS OF LIFE



                         LAST WORDS FROM ROETHKE

                         LET OUR WORDS MELT INTO

                               IMMEASURABLE SILENCE

                         LET US SHARE A MEASURED SILENCE

                               WITH OUR WORDS



                         MANANITAS - BEND OREGON - FEB 5TH, 1992

                         (FOR MARY O)




                         ON ARROGANT PRIDE

                         ON BECOMING THE POEMS

                         ON CHRISTMAS, A COW CRIES...

                         ON MIXING YOUR METAPHORS

                         ON THE SEED OF THE SKY



                         PAIN CAN SHARPEN OUR TASTES


                         PASSING IT ON

                         POETRY IS



                         SEA DIALOGUE




                         THE OLD SEA IS WAITING TOO

                         THERE IS A HOLY EXPECTATION

                         THERE IS A PARTY AWAITING YOU

                         THERE'S A PHOENIX IN THE BROKEN

                               GLITTERING BIRD

                         THE SKY IS OUR LIMIT

                         THE SUN IS MERELY SETTING ONCE AGAIN






                         WE MEANINGFUL COSMIC CLOWNS

                         WHERE GOD'S FEET ARE

                         WITH A BEE IN MY MOUTH


                         LAST POEM - HE WHO HOLDS THE SEVEN STARS







                         PAIN CAN SHARPEN OUR TASTES


                         Pain can give us a taste

                         for the simple pleasures of life

                         and meld us back down

                         into savoring the beauty

                         and wonder of existence.

                         Pain can sharpen our senses.




                         JOINT HEIRS OF LIFE


                         I am an heir of God.

                         God is my inheritance:

                         to explore God

                         to relish God,

                         to savor God,

                         to respond to God,

                         to adore God...forever.


                         God is an heir of me.

                         I am God's inheritance

                         that God might:

                         explore me,

                         relish me,

                         savor me,

                         respond to me,

                         and adore me...forever!




                         WHERE GOD'S FEET ARE


                         Where God's feet are,

                         new songs fly free

                         like young birds soar out of ancient trees.

                         Where God's fingers are...

                         there is constant beauty;

                         and the very stones anticipate

                         —crying out their solid hopes—

                         as he who trashes souls

                         is sent a hie faddling away.

                         Then back doors are thrown open,

                         the auroral floods though

                         and eyes open to spill out the light.




                         ON THE SEED OF THE SKY



                         pregnant sky

                         clothes itself

                         with pungent earth

                         —Heaven blooms!






                         (On the death of a loving soul)


                         When you go home,

                         all the Angels

                         will put on their merry hats

                         and sing,






                         THERE IS A HOLY EXPECTATION


                         There is a holy expectation

                         hovering above all things.

                         Around every child who is born

                         lives a delicate dream of what could be.

                         To sense the Maker's hope

                         is to love the Maker;

                         and to love the Maker

                         is to commit your soul to fulfill

                         His beautiful dream.





                    I BELIEVE


                    I believe God wants to honor

                    the soul of every human being,

                    that God wants to nurture forth

                    love and wonder in the souls

                    of all peoples,

                    so that He might celebrate us

                    and share with us His own

                    Holy goodness and beauty.

                    I believe that

                    the Spirit of the Almighty

                    is a Spirit of such gentleness

                    that we only began to fathom Him

                    in our rarest moments

                    of extraordinary tenderness.

                    I believe that God's eyes brim with joy

                    when we adore Him even a little bit

                    with our hearts,

                    and that when we are even a little thankful

                    for the gift of life,

                    God smiles....


                    I believe God is humble;

                    that he delights in us with wonder

                    like a small child;

                    that his whole heart is taken with us

                    when we offer Him just a hint of honor,

                    just a bit of loving adoration for:

                    creating the world,

                    and us,

                    and the billions of stars;

                    for becoming for us an innocent child in poverty,

                    for growing to be a flaming man, brimming with life:

                    a healing artist

                    who sculpted his beauty

                    in the clay of human depravities.


                    Whenever goodness moves to wake us up,

                    whenever generous beauty beckons to our deep,

                    I believe God is quietly there

                    —taking no credit—

                    giving honor to his children.

                    And yet, when a song is sung,

                    a word spoken,

                    a compassionate hand extended

                    in celebration of the privilege

                    we have to share in his care

                    and just one human being whispers

                    deep within his strangely warmed heart,

                    "Thank you holy Father,

                    Papa, Papa, I love you!"

                    I believe that God is so proud of that soul

                    that light wells up in His eyes

                    and bright tears spill down

                    His radiant cheeks.









                         THERE IS A PARTY AWAITING YOU


                         There is a party awaiting you

                         in your deepest self.

                         Your neighbor is there

                         and so is a moose,

                         a cat, a cow, a mouse,

                         a gnat.

                         A tree is there

                         and a stone, and a star...

                         The door to the feast

                         is shaped like a cross.

                         Release all things

                         from your crippled,

                         crucified hands

                         and you shall fall

                         back through the door

                         into the music.

                         "Where did this light come from?"

                         you will ask,

                         "And... how did you all get here,

                         in my heart?"







                         ON CHRISTMAS, A COW CRIES...


                         On Christmas a cow cries,

                         "Holy, holy, holy

                         is the Lord of hosts!"

                         The trouble is,

                         its cry is deep calling unto deep

                         and who takes the time

                         to listen to their core?

                         And so, the innocent,

                         imaginative cow

                         confines itself to the humble role

                         we dim gods have given it,

                         eats grass and dreams,

                         "Next Christmas

                         I’ll eat grass in the pastures

                         of the Jerusalem of Light..."






                         ABOUT OUR SECRET MINISTRY


                         To know the secret of another soul

                         that they must find and keep and tell;

                         to love them from afar

                         and turn and touch,

                         embrace and lift;

                         and savor rich spaces,

                         mingling over distances,

                         as gifts are given to a gift.






                         ON ARROGANT PRIDE


                         Arrogant pride is a brilliant balloon

                         held in the hand of a crippled fool.









                         Inside my masculine heart,

                         inside my warrior breast,

                         lies a beautiful woman,

                         or a dream of a woman!

                         She is wholly other,

                         yet alive in me

                         waiting to find herself

                         in the woman

                         in whose feminine heart,

                         in whose soft breast

                         I live asleep

                         —yet ever watchful

                         and waiting to awake,

                         when I see myself

                         through her eyes.









                         AND THE LAST ENEMY TO CONQUER IS...


                         Death is like

                         running out naked

                         into a golden rain

                         and laughing

                         at the dark.

                         And one spins around

                         singing, "Thank you!

                         I love you!"

                         And the whole opening skies echo,

                         "Thank you! I love you!"









                         Imagine that you were alone

                         and God was alone in an empty world

                         waiting for you to unfurl

                         truth as a banner of beauty,

                         flapping in your solitary place,

                         filling all the space you know

                         with God.


                         You are a candle of the Lord

                         waiting to be lit

                         with the life that adores Him.

                         Imagine all the dark world

                         glimmering with candles

                         and love the quiet light that links

                         solitary places!

                         Imagine all the world gleaming

                         with love's gentle faces.





                         POETRY IS


                         Poetry is the truth of life

                         verbally dancing.






                         CALLING POETS


                         Open up sky in the concrete!

                         Pour concrete into the sky

                         for the sake of the

                         fabulous formless

                         form of Being

                         surrounded by the six-winged

                         and surrounding all,

                         calling all

                         and being called.











                         There are words within words;

                         a pearl hidden in a field.


                         There is a coin lost in the night

                         on which is engraved

                         the radiant face

                         of the risen Christ

                         on the golden side

                         and on the

                         black, back side

                         a wild, mysterious face

                         known only to God.


                         There is a tiny, diamond-like seed

                         in the fields you are furrowing,

                         and a seed within the seed.











                         EVERY SOUL CAN BE A LILLY


                         A Lilly is a soul

                         who has traveled beyond

                         flashes of light

                         in the full power of love

                         to enter the holy presence

                         which bathes her soul

                         in absolute, unmovable, light.

                         And there she finds another country

                         within this world,

                         and her true King.

                         And all which is within that sphere dances

                         as beautiful music moves;

                         and winged singers fly

                         like mist swirling from star to star;

                         and bird song gurgles

                         out of unfathomable depths

                         with the clarity of sound

                         a perfect diamond makes

                         when piercing light spangles it.

                         A Lilly will, at some supreme moment,

                         hear the Golden Voice speak her name

                         —that same voice that spoke

                         the billion gleaming galaxies—

                         and she, fully dilating

                         to adore He who spoke,

                         will complete His heart's hope

                         and become for Him

                         His own holy singing word.





                         HOW AN APPLE TREE CELEBRATES


                         Let the apple tree

                         be filled with flowers—

                         then loose them to the wind.

                         Do not weep for lost beauty, child!

                         Remember, there are

                         apple blossoms flying everywhere

                         filling the world with beautiful

                         and making the wind fragrant.

                         And... as the tree is stripped

                         bleak and barren,

                         its season of fruit-bearing

                         shall commence.

                         The naked core of every blossom

                         is swelling.









                         ALL THE CAST I CARE FOR LOVES THE THEATRE


                         These words are for secret places:

                         about the stage of your heart

                         with its curtains drawn.

                         I am no actor—

                         I can not perform—

                         but only hope to speak to

                         the actors of that theatre

                         of divine imagery within you.

                         You, the reader, are alone

                         —and never alone!

                         May I say,

                         "All the cast I care for

                         loves the theatre...

                         And, all the cast I care for

                         loves the stage."

                         It is they alone

                         who draw back those curtains.










                         SEA DIALOGUE


                         Shell beach—celebration!

                         A young woman in yellow sunlight,

                         lithe as seaweed—celebration!

                         And the brown child, with long silk-black hair,

                         in her orange bright sea-suit,

                         busily making sand castles

                         as the sea roars foam

                         white and free.

                         Some black-headed,

                         bubbling, curious seal sea-sisters

                         swim by. They say,

                         "Come in and play with us,"

                         communicating by the sudden shakes

                         of their shiny heads.

                         So I do!

                         Shells and seals and human bodies;

                         tumbling souls in the effervescence

                         of the sea

                         with its sequestered creatures,

                         its distant, humanless depths.

                         How little girls love the seashore!

                         How little boys have always loved the seashore!

                         And that pretty, red haired woman

                         wading in a froth of foam,

                         gazing in wild contemplations

                         towards her secrets in the sea...





                         THE OLD SEA IS WAITING TOO


                         A holy child

                         dances into sea foam.

                         Sparkling waters

                         run through her veins.

                         She greets the wild ocean

                         with unrestrained joy.

                         The old sea

                         stirs in remembrance

                         of ancient, innocent times

                         and its briny voice









                         I AM GRIEVING MY FATHER'S LOSS


                         I am grieving

                         my father's loss:

                         he who unknowingly                        

                         let me wander

                         unshielded into the dark.

                         And it was he who lost

                         the little one

                         —loved and longed for—

                         yet gone blind in the pain

                         of these lies:

                         "unloved, uncared for,


                         It was my father who missed

                         the beauty of my smiles,

                         the feel of my arms

                         around his neck,

                         the innocent pride of my eyes

                         shining up into his

                         as he read me stories

                         of manhood

                         and the beauty of woman.

                         It was he who missed

                         the many days he could have spent

                         with my small hand

                         in his warm, sensitive hand.

                         I am grieving...

                         my father's loss.








                         I HAVE A PLACE HERE


                         I have a place here

                         in this green world

                         that affirms my value

                         to the fragrant old earth.

                         She needs me

                         to touch her

                         with my care

                         and sing back into her ears

                         her ancient songs.

                         She needs me

                         to take her in my loving arms

                         —my old mother—

                         and rock her like

                         she was my own

                         caterwauling child,

                         singing her pain and pellucid beauty

                         in lullabies of tenderest love.


                         I have a place here

                         in these bright heavens

                         that swallow up my soul with light.

                         I am adored here,

                         because God needs me:

                         He needs me to touch Him

                         with my care

                         and sing into His Holy ears

                         His ancient songs.

                         He needs me

                         —my deathless Father—

                         to take Him in my loving arms

                         and rock him like

                         He was my own suffering child,

                         singing of His joyful birth

                         in the womb of His dark pain,

                         singing His beauty and terrible goodness

                         in lullabies of tenderest love.









                         THE SUN IS MERELY SETTING ONCE AGAIN


                         The sun is setting.

                         The contemplative ducks

                         view it with clear minds.

                         All the flaming colors spill

                         into their fathomless souls.

                         One duck flaps its wings

                         and splashes around

                         in a wild ecstasy of thanks.

                         Another sits still, too stunned

                         by color

                         to enact its silent speech.

                         A third takes to the skies,

                         being a prayer of adoration.










                         MANANITAS - BEND OREGON - FEB 5TH, 1992

                         (FOR MARY O)


                         We gathered in the first orange flare

                         of morning's dawn,

                         and in the face flushing crispness

                         of winter air

                         we huddled together

                         to give and take morning's greetings.

                         Our eyes were glowing

                         with the yellow candlelight

                         flaming quietly in our hands.

                         And so we gathered to honor a soul,

                         (a beautiful child inside an old house of pain),

                         and sang her a birthday song,

                         a birthing song,

                         which woke her up in confusions

                         and took her breath away,

                         making her shining eyes brim up suddenly

                         from that sweet pain

                         that comes when love

                         takes you by surprise

                         and crashes through your defenses

                         into your soft, love hungry core.









                         ON BECOMING THE POEMS


                         We must become the poetry.

                         We must do the deeds of it.

                         Everyone can be a poem!

                         Everyone can be a song!

                         Woven heart to heart in one spirit of wise love,

                         the beauty flows

                         with a simple spontaneity

                         that is almost perfect

                         in its earthiness.

                         And we are becoming real!

                         The inside

                         comes out direct and clear.

                         The outside

                         is ingested as wondrous symbols

                         which unfold inner worlds.

                         All things are words

                         and are loved for their existence.

                         Love is the magical music

                         of word linked to word.

                         The light of meaning flashes

                         from eye to eye

                         as each poem is read,

                         celebrated! cherished... 

                         We are the poems

                         and our deeds speak the truth of us!








                         CONCERNING HONESTY


                         I said,

                         "Take off your mask!"

                         She said,

                         "I shall, when I know

                         that you love it."







                         THERE'S A PHOENIX IN THE BROKEN BIRD


                         Out of fear of someone seeing

                         her solemn, empty eyes

                         she put on her mask of mirth

                         and danced a shimmering dance;

                         but could not hide...

                         for her music

                         held her pain in its twisted hands

                         and spilled out its dense black notes

                         over the heads of the people

                         until all her story was told.

                         And the people loved her!

                         Then the soft, shining eyes of her lovers

                         lit up the dark void

                         so recently haunted

                         with tormented voices,

                         and she, laughing, dropped

                         her glittering mask.







                         WE MEANINGFUL COSMIC CLOWNS


                         We are a joke

                         that doesn't want to be one.

                         A human:

                         a god,

                         an animal.

                         We have fathomless souls

                         and spirits that can move

                         faster than light

                         beyond the reaches of infinite stars;

                         and we have cracks in our bottoms

                         and squat to fart out stale gases.

                         How God delights in us,

                         his meaningful, cosmic clowns.

                         How God weeps with us

                         who have forgotten

                         how to laugh

                         at the joke

                         of ourselves.







                         A SMALL LESSON ABOUT WRITING


                         Let those

                         who birth

                         the miraculous

                         into brains

                         through books

                         lie long

                         with dogs

                         or sit silently

                         at the feet

                         of mysterious cows

                         until the language

                         these brethren brew

                         bursts out!


                         in the masks and music

                         of words.










                         AT A SCHOOL OPEN TO HEAVEN


                         I sang them a song

                         and a poem or two

                         that echoed back to them

                         their own clarity as children

                         through the expanse

                         of a child-like man.

                         They lapped up the life

                         and sang like little birds

                         suddenly remembering the sky

                         from their perches in fragrant trees.

                         And so they gave back to me

                         a thousand times what I gave,

                         stretching forth their small hands

                         and singing a wave

                         of spiritual blessing:

                         like a simple wind

                         of purity.

                         It swept me away into peace.

                         And so, I bounded out into the street,

                         awake with a child's joy

                         and too joyful to weep

                         at my sudden remembrance

                         of those blind,

                         bird-like children

                         kept in dark cages

                         who no longer believe in the sky

                         or the sun.







                         ON MIXING YOUR METAPHORS


                         It is only essential

                         that the black, angry hornet

                         becomes a worm to die

                         into a luminous butterfly.

                         Forgive the mixing of metaphors.

                         Sometimes truth demands it.








                     BE YE HOLY AS I AM CREATIVE AND



                     The Word is blessed:

                     a blessed dream,

                     a King's dream,

                     a vision and heartfelt hope

                     of the Maker's mind.

                     Those who give their lives

                     to fulfill the Maker's living dream

                     journey into the ripe blessedness

                     of the joyous wisdom and power

                     which created the Universe.

                     And this wisdom and power

                     we may call, Holy Compassionate Love...


                     Creative Celebrative Beauty.











                         Let us share

                         a measured silence

                         with our words.



                         LET OUR WORDS MELT INTO

                         IMMEASURABLE SILENCE


                         Let our words melt

                         into immeasurable






                         CONCERNING CHRIST JESUS


                         He is a Lion

                         as well as a Lamb

                         —there is hair on God's chest—

                         this Holy Vicar is also King!

                         So beware, violent men

                         who side with the Great Wound

                         and refuse to be tenderly healed...





                    THE SKY IS OUR LIMIT


                    Once, mankind stood upon the earth

                    and worked the earth.

                    "The earth is our limit," people said.

                    But some souls watched the birds and dreamed.

                    "The sky is our limit," they said.

                    Most men laughed at them...

                    And then, men flew.


                    "The sky is our limit," the people said.

                    But some souls gazed up at the stars and dreamed.

                    "The stars are our limit," they said.

                    Most men laughed at them.

                    And then, men rocketed out into space.


                    "The stars are our limit," people said.

                    But some souls gazed into the human heart

                    and dreamed.

                    "The heart is our limit," they said.

                    Most men laughed at them.

                    And then, people passed

                    through their opening hearts

                    into God's heavens.


                    They were very happy!


                    "The limitless heavens are our limit," the people said.

                    But some souls gazed out upon the earth

                    and dreamed.

                    "The earth is our limit," they said,

                    "To make it beautiful with holy love..."






                    PASSING IT ON


                    "So tell me, Father,"

                    the young man spoke,

                    bluntly, plainly,

                    like honest folk

                    do when they're looking

                    for more than meets the eye...

                    (when you got a soul-birthed question

                    its best to ask a prophet why),

                    "What is man's most sacred duty?"


                    The old man cracked a smile

                    like a bird cracks a flea.

                    Questions like that

                    to him were... savory!

                    He sat silent for a moment,

                    then squinted, and rummaged

                    through his vest for a pipe;

                    and lit the sullen air

                    around him with his light;

                    then seemed to sing more than speak:

                    his voice rang with the intensities

                    of bringing his whole life's knowledge to its peak.

                    "Boy," he sang with his craggy voice

                    that once made sleeping stones rejoice,

                    "This be the whole thing I've come to know.

                    Now, let it blow whar it'll blow!

                    —I give it to you!

                    This be the whole, our God given duty:

                    Let your love be tamed by wisdom, Son...

                    then make it wild with beauty!"






                         LAST WORDS FROM ROETHKE


                         I listened to a bird

                         whistling in the wood

                         and knew that I had heard

                         what every person should

                         who's not far apart

                         from their simple human heart.


                         All folks can wander where

                         they too might hear a bird

                         go whistling through the air

                         above what's often heard:

                         all this cacophonic sound

                         so prevalent upon the ground.


                         And each one has a choice,

                         to listen through that bird

                         to still another voice

                         perhaps they once have heard—

                         and give to it a sure reply,

                         "Behold me Lord, for here am I!"


                         When wind's within the ear

                         and fire's in a tree,

                         and birds within the air

                         are family unto me:

                         something carries me away

                         into a far richer day.








                          Singing in the mountains

                          the holy wind blows down

                          crisp and clear

                          like a tumbling wave

                          of Spirit.










                    COULD YOU PERHAPS BELIEVE ME?


                    What if songs you wrote

                    with your own finger

                    in the air at night

                    above your dream-soaked bed

                    were more valuable to you

                    than all other things

                    you can touch?

                    What if such songs

                    sang you awake

                    into the imaginative world

                    of ancient holy peoples?

                    Perhaps then you would believe me

                    if I should tell you

                    that the great blue whale

                    leaps up from the sea

                    to touch an angel's outstretched hand,

                    or that an attentive deer,

                    gazing inside of trees,

                    sees old tree souls

                    whistling silence

                    like a divine word.

                    Perhaps then you would know

                    that the tall gray heron

                    standing alone

                    upon a moon-lit log, afloat

                    upon a glassy lake of the stars,

                    stands there praying to the heavens

                    and watching

                    for those flying, light-born beings

                    who seek you with their songs.







                    WITH A BEE IN MY MOUTH


                    With a bee in my mouth

                    I ran bare footed to the ancient

                    dark hole of the Opali

                    a thousand children before me

                    had peered into,

                    (some of them from Mongolia

                    or further away);

                    they who had once stood, like me,

                    on this stone, in this white sea wind.

                    Those ancient ones had just sticks

                    for spears, no guns

                    like my little blue spear gun,

                    so I must have been suddenly

                    the supreme hunter here of all time.

                    And I had singing girls,

                    (French girls and Irish girls),

                    standing in the bows of yellow ships

                    in my young mind:

                    and so I shot

                    my little blue gun

                    with bravado

                    into the small blackness

                    of my childhood's fears...

                    and hit stone!

                    Then I saw myself reflected

                    in the shining eyes

                    of a thousand little Opali

                    darting out into

                    the endless currents

                    of the sea.






                     HE WHO HOLDS THE SEVEN STARS


                     He who holds seven flaming stars

                     in the hollow of His hand;

                     He who strides on feet of burnished bronze—

                     white hot;

                     He who is the origin of the Universe

                     and its consummation;

                     He who chose to be dead,

                     and has risen

                     —having killed death;


                     He whose hair is white

                     like a quick arc of lightning—

                     who knows well what seditiously birthed

                     the poverty of our wealth—

                     has a razor-like sword

                     coming out of His mouth!


                     He whose breast is covered with gold,

                     whose robe brushes the tops of burning feet

                     cries out, "Do not deny real faith;

                     hold fast to the freedom of My Name!"

                     He cries out again

                     with a loud voice that makes the heavens

                     tremble like water in a shaken glass,

                     "Do not worship idols, flee false being,

                     beware of the mystery of gods that are not."


                     He whose eyes are flames of fire

                     says, "I will war against you

                     with the sword of my mouth until you turn

                     from your loveless ways.

                     My Voice is the voice of many waters.

                     Pray for the flood!

                     Blessed is the opening of the eyes,

                     the lifting of the heart,

                     the cleansing of the spirit!

                     "I will cut you into freedom!"



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