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Les Tuileries, Paris. 2011.

Out beyond ideas of rightdoing and wrong doing

There is a field. I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,

the world is too full to talk about

language, ideas, even the phrase each other

doesn’t make any sense.

Jalal al-Din Muhammad Rumi

مولانا جلال الدين محمد بلخى

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La Seine, Paris. Photograph+ Digital Alteration. November 2011.

I am sorry
For my jumbled mess of thoughts
my contradictions
my ash offerings

I am sorry
for my sterile hips
for burning like a fallow candle
for not fathoming your fullness
(I salute it now).

Penelope undoes at night
her morning’s narrative.
It changes with each day:
two steps forward and one back
is not a step forward.
In fact, it is very much like
marching in place
while wearing a hair shirt.

I am sorry for my darkness
For wanting to hurt you with dandelions
for standing by a ripped promise
like a stubborn stone.

I write because
I have to.
If necessary, I can beg for a pen and paper
to hold again my favorite barbed wire.
(Sylvia Plath tell me again
how much fun it is
to write a poem).

I move my arms to caress
the petals of a giant sunflower
Inhale, lenghten
Exhale, melt.

In my raw silence,
my shard-sharp mind, my heart-awareness
forgetfulness is that one wine
I cannot purchase:
The door was ajar
yet I chose not to enter.

“Forgive my thoughts,
for they bloom at night
Nightflower’d orphans
banished by light”.

 

San Diego, November 2011.

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Calvary and Atonement. Paris, Le Marais district. October 2011

The Dark Night of the Soul

St John Of the Cross


On a dark night,
Kindled in love with yearnings–oh, happy chance!–
I went forth without being observed,
My house being now at rest.

In darkness and secure,
By the secret ladder, disguised–oh, happy
chance!–
In darkness and in concealment,
My house being now at rest.

In the happy night,
In secret, when none saw me,
Nor I beheld aught,

Without light or guide, save that which burned in my
heart.

This light guided me
More surely than the light of noonday
To the place where he (well I knew who!) was awaiting me–
A place where none appeared.

Oh, night that guided me,
Oh, night more lovely than the dawn,
Oh, night that joined Beloved with lover,
Lover transformed in the Beloved!

Upon my flowery breast,
Kept wholly for himself alone,
There he stayed sleeping, and I caressed him,
And the fanning of the cedars made a breeze.

The breeze blew from the turret
As I parted his locks;
With his gentle hand he wounded my neck
And caused all my senses to be suspended.

I remained, lost in oblivion;
My face I reclined on the Beloved.
All ceased and I abandoned myself,
Leaving my cares forgotten among the lilies.


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October 2011

Strangers

by Huda Ablan

 

1.

No one belongs to the path

except a pocket

stuffed with the leaves of the night.

It keeps steps in stock

from a shop at the crossroads of the will,

patched with the skin of an old dream.

When yawning,

it invites them to a dance

with few feet and much madness.

When hungry,

it devours their warm, ripe whispers.

When thirsty,

it drinks their cries washed with holy water.

When lonely,

it forsakes its lenght and shrinks

to a remote corner of the heart

leafing through pictures of those

who have passed away

ensnaring with their song…

It will cast glances,

and tremble with the silence.



2.

No one belongs to the rose

except its melting

in the hand of a sad lover

who plucks it from slumber

every morning

and plants it in the vase of a tear

overflowing with pain.

He teaches how love sings

and how to breathe the secret

hiding behind the eyes

so it may reveal itself

without words.



3.

No one belongs to the heart.

Immersed in opening its chambers–

Shut tight with red forgetfulness–

It stirs the beats of a love

over which a curtain has been drawn

for a thousand nights,

and shakes a cup of blood

freezing as it faces circulation.

It alone

stabs the rug of a wound

made ready for crying

and prays

facing death.



4.

There is no one in the house

is dozing cracks obscure

the rounded journey of a small sun.

In the enclosure of the spirit

its walls bend in the face

of blows from the winds.

Its warmth ages and shrinks

in the coldness of waiting.

With the eyes of the absent

it soaks up warm places that flow

at the very edge of the passage

and melts in the shudder

of an endless beckoning.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     .

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Lanternes et Notredame. Paris. 2011

 

To walk in Paris is to behold, and be part of, a living and continuously changing painting.

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Entry for ONE LIFE | An International Photography Competition.

I decided to participate ( characteristically last-minute) to ONE LIFE, an international photography competition, in the ‘City Imagery’ category.

Click here (or on the image above) to see the entry at a higher resolution and, if you like what you see, vote and share my photograph.

The prize is $10,000 or a trip around the world. Guess what I would pick.

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