Last manuscript of an exiled Russian poet


Pick up a yardstick to measure your life against anyone else’s, and you’ve just picked up a stick and beaten up your own soul.
~ Ann Voskamp

55

And I cannot inherit back
my childhood from a photo-album
what I was, what i am

is transferred in silence
and most probably lost
like all living things
I accept the change of it all

that which expands, contracts
like a flock of birds in flight
I am at ease & I am alarmed

you hold your own hand in smiles
And I cannot do that, I’m not you
the pieces of my soul
Were already given to words

lost on words like a poet
writing after midnight
not destined the next morning

to remember what possessed him
not able to make up all the alphabets
that changed his life as the
seconds overtake me

I will be that irregular snowflake
as misunderstood as the
hands of the clock

the golden speck in sunlight
the stranger who smiled
at me, or with me, strangely.

i dreamed of a familiar stranger


Until one has loved an animal a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.
~ Anatole France

54

We’ve lived our lives and not
Seen each other, never met
we looked up at the same stars
felt the same things, tried

to give kindness to strangers
oh what an evening it is now
together in the same light
beneath the same lamp?

we were young and vigorous
for a time, and now both have
graying temples and diamond truths
to take from the particular obstacles

of our birth and fate, though
your exclamations stir my heart
with the spiritual truth of your wonder
and the honesty of your perception

we ask if we could have become good friends?
perhaps it as as though we were there
all along, from what direction did we come?
that such similar souls could have

not known each other, it seems unreal
in the rainy summer night, walking in the dew
with ten cups of things to talk about
tomorrow we will just be two spirits
in a boundless world of human affairs.

the media only tells us what they want us to know


“Me and all my friends
We’re all misunderstood
They say we stand for nothing and
There’s no way we ever could…”

~ John Mayer

53

fast is the century, the airplane crashes
tsunamis more common in their
execution, destiny enlightened
i watch for signs from the ocean

meteors, extinction events
plagues, global warming
governments muzzling scientists

democracy being wounded
by corporations taking over the media
I see it every day
this is what I witness

currencies cracking
fear in the marketplace
panic amid layoffs

fast is the century,
each month they tell me
it’s the warmest on record
i speak of eternity, but nobody listens

they are living the American dream
exploiting others for profit
Mexicans leave their children

inside the borders, so that
America might become a spanish place
it is happening, soon there will be no
‘us’ and ‘them’, the world is changing
And I’m waiting for the world to change.

let down your hair and be free


52

when one’s life is riding on a crest
there is no revelry
in excess, for the stuff of dreams

is what we were built for
waves of empty glasses
wine of forever lost friends
fortune for careless returning

i’ll slaughter time. for a second
april showers, distant silhouettes
time is but a dream, across skylines

there nothing i could find
north of the citadel, in the ripened hour
the setting sun tells it’s
time to depart, time for deserted gloom

to pass, like the celebrities of flowers
right on queue, the phoenixes have blown
away, like muse at the palace gardens

the aroma of the last guests has departed
it’s time for the autumn crane
to be romantic again & embrace surrealism.

Wine of Autumn Nights


51

with sparkling glasses that shine
i drink the moon light
through eyes like candlelight

who cares for darkness?
not the mountain or sky or i
the stars retire me to my bed
knowing my time to live, or die

i might find happiness
impossible awake, so easily
in my dreams, lying drunk

with spiritual jokes
on the shore of my last years
spring dreams flood my
lucid revealing storms

so i drink the autumn dew
and horizons merge in the
open-minded reign of blood

that waits in the bamboo lodge
for eternity to whistle
in the heart’s bright-moon content
in front of my window

the plum tree has it blossomed yet?
Did you see? these morning
showers are as a mountain stream

good omens to refresh all colors
I’ll see old friends beyond the Pass
Can I impose on you, one more glass?

Memories like chinese poems


A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.
~ Lao Tzu

50

homesick for something
I cannot name, for home
beyond all other homes?
I am alone in a foreign land

in love with foreigners
sick of the locals
I do not want to speak
or conform to the customs

of living, sowing, reaping
i search for the Tao
but cannot find it, it evades
my grasp, like the endlessly

awake stars, they do not sleep
for light is bled in rivers
of heaven, like poems
mild-mannered echoing down

the centuries, poorly translated
by tongues who no longer speak
with the ancients, the ragged fringe
to be a rare fellow lost among

the songs, i hear music on the lips
of the clouds, that do not dream
but draw, day after day
to bid each other a sad farewell

as neighbors, as friends, as heart-broken
children that have no place
but the wiping of eyes
the lingers at the fork in the road.

lineage of non-duality


Accustom yourself continually to make many acts of love, for they enkindle and melt the soul.
~ Saint Teresa of Avila

49

on the terrace of immortals
i am laughing at mortality
I climb straight to silence

where there is no ambiguity
my eyes are like jade cubes of ice
they smile into the wind
and tear at the rainy sun

through favor or disfavor
I pay no mind at all….
in poverty or solitude

through the dreams of living
be filled with uncertainty and doubt
i speak the original language
of waiting without thinking

of loving without seizing
taking a page out of Wu Cailan’s
indifference, i find the shinning moonlight

is whiter than long ago
what’s the use of contending?
with grief or disgrace?
to both I can aptly respond

only light resides in the
city of the mind, in the
distance of the heart

that knows no separation
between places, centuries, entities
we drift happily like the clouds
our lives turn like the leaves.

into the Tao


Never think there is anything impossible for the soul. It is the greatest heresy to think so. If there is sin, this is the only sin; to say that you are weak, or others are weak.

~ Swami Vivekananda

48

these are great trees
to walk below, temple breeze
on our back
at the edge of dusk
past dew into the greenest moss

we keep it clean
past the gate
into the great-dream

without expectation
we witness beauty
in forever new ways
wandering mountain monks
who have forgotten everything

but the candle and the meditation
the temple tree path
where we follow orange footsteps

into the sea, sequence of sunsets
autumn’s embrace of crystal ripples
on the lake that doesn’t move
ready for the white moon
to shine incandescent above everything

nothing can waver, time cannot bend
to our little will, not willing to return
we leave the world behind
to others who will learn
to leave the universe behind.

song of death


If you die you’re completely happy and your soul somewhere lives on. I’m not afraid of dying. Total peace after death, becoming someone else is the best hope I’ve got.
~ Kurt Cobain

47

The night, it is a path of stars
to which no visitor can wander
ankle-deep in the ocean

from forests to cities, to the sea
nobody can falter
though the night be deserted
though there be no shelter

i am not alone, i alone
can visit thee, in my
spirit’s secrecy

from my eternal spark
but i, am the one who holds you
i am not alone, this world
forgets its origins

all flesh is sad to see
but shone, or dark, or together
or alone, in solitary bliss

death the ticker loves the taker
who is the greatest lover
anti-mother who always remembers
i am not alone, let wind or salt
take me, dive me into final hours.

redeemer divinity sweet


Let your soul stand cool and composed before a million universes.
~ Walt Whitman

46

divinity is not a language
of the mind, but a gift
that resides in the heart

from the Universe to all
and a new music there
and a serene vision that excels
an undying faith that

loves inner beauty easily
and observes time’s children
with a kind of equality

divinity is not a skill
that can be used, or hoarded
it’s in the fields, and the air
its sphere is the light

that bathes all the stars
its atoms mix the purest joy
with all existence, behind the pain

an essential delight of experience
that no creatures can hide for long
of splendid origin, and new light
in hands of god, in kisses from the Earth

divinity leaves a trace and it says:
‘you’re saved, you called me,
you made me, body, life and soul’

time of revelation


Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.
~ Aristotle

45

Give me not translations
of what all the mystics sought
creation forgotten
creator only felt

attention turned inward
in love with the Beloved alone
don’t call it God
call it supreme nature

that everyone possesses
that can possess everyone
if they only knew
how to surrender to its

sum of perfection
to its righteous unity
give me not translations
of what the rishi or the saint

might have thought they had
creation found
creator born anew
o tender burn!

o burning caress!
that renders all debts paid
that makes karma holy
and time sacred

amen, whose splendor
is for living fire
warm and to enlighten
playful, to win my love!

soul never ceases


“What Is Love? I have met in the streets a very poor young man who was in love. His hat was old, his coat worn, the water passed through his shoes and the stars through his soul”
― Victor Hugo

44

Incited by something internal
Love feeds the centuries
nothing but her attention

everything in her devotion
you believe you act for your self
but it guides you, incited by
the light of your soul that is

an evolutionary spark of quantum
intelligence, a psychic source of love
and also its food, beauty and intimacy

which never grows scarce
wisdom and good works
these are her instruments
harmony, gratitude, compassion, peace

so use them like small lamps
in your life, feed them with
attention, practice, active service

as a diamond fountain gushing forth
as divine roses, the sea of truth
your spirit prepares all obstacles.

rising into silence


43

i came upon God accidentally
like learning a new language
upon connection, i came

into the unknown and stayed
without knowing, rising
beyond the science of silence
i did not know where

the door was to leave or enter
this brilliant house
it’s a perfect realm of calm

and a deepest release into solitude
that is a peace, a stunned
and stammering quietude
i was given a narrow way

to enter fields of light
rising beyond all science
i carried my evolution

for inside the confines of experience
until I was dazed and liberated
revealing my own intimacy with God
in splendor of my five senses

my mind found a potter’s home
a carpentry of my soul’s workshop
to work with my hands

for something divine
and know creation intimately
like a poet who never sleeps
holiness is not a place or a person

it is a language, the unity
behind all thought, all will, all hope
this is knowledge, by unknowing

and solace, without fighting
this is a blazing height of all remedies
when knowing and doing is insufficient
and feeling surrenders in the dark

to the most holy Being and freedom
which can only be translated into
ecstatic feeling, that is God to me.

echoes from Assisi


42

heavenly spouse, that blesses all things
how you have loved me, that I am chaste
how you have touched me

that I am now pure
your power whose miracles
worked gratitude and forgiveness in me
Until your abundance became

fortified compassion in all my words
how your appearance in the world
jumps out at me now

in whose embrace I am caught
like a rapture from a divinity
leaning on me with strange music
arriving to my eyes like sparkling gems

in the blossoms of springtime
I see new lives and recognize their holiness
a sign of your holiness, everywhere

sacred in the bright humility
of a saint’s tongue or an angel’s smile
on a path of simple happiness
I have forgotten what I once sought

that was not you, most high
the pursuit of perfection is now
the seduction of Lords and Goddesses

each laughs to dissuade me from believing
that the secret of existence
could be so simple
I who once ran after you

hoping for but one whiff
of your fragrance of treasured bliss
now it is with me every day.

i held my breath for summers


41

Light chooses blue surf, pigeon-songs
we sailed until we found ourselves
far away in boats, sailing to nowhere

the ocean’s breeze had a lot to tell us
stabbing the pale skies for forever-afters
we lit our soul with ginger-tea
beneath canopies of star-lit nights
bare legs for the ends of July

beaches for the color of swelling tangerines
with kisses goodbye, but never enough
you were there too, those wispy weekends

full of melodies and cooper sunrise
Light chooses white sails, fragrances
curving like the shorelines, memories
of timelessness, or something beyond
the currents, after the blues, behind

veils, and the taste of your salts
my emotional body was left there
and my cheeks grow weary of so much light

as if sunburns could puncture through
soul mates that amounted to the memory
of women on the beach, bikinis of offering
the dusk hips and wet lips of another time…

40

Flutes of Light


39

we’ve retold the stories
of our lives like prehistory
so many times we forgot the white morning

or the gulls that drove us
to listen to traces of infinity
we become our own museums
sort of broken accounts of what

happened to us, a thousand photos later
we still can’t tell you the truth
about ourselves, that’s second-guessing

or the lack of objectivity with self
the sun leans low on the trees
of our youth, it passes faster
than you can name your old favorite songs

driving home, the moon draws close
we left our city lights, hoping
to become somebody we could respect

i love’ed you all day, all days
and felt the intimate street lights
bathe me against all my worries
which seem in retrospect, a bit petty

heat won’t leave the pavement
until night is almost over
and we’ll do it over all again

for the last freeway of summer
for leaving all the lights on
just to see you from the corner of my eyes.

38

Be Realistic, plan for Miracles


37

if you are feeling stuck
abandon what you do, be somebody else
embrace uncertainty for experience

pure experience without judgement
where Life again becomes
possible, freedom of will
self-determined, bitter-sweet

youthful, exuberant, spring-autumn
with the taste of rosebuds
dual, frankly crazy, appreciated

spin wildly into your next months
with both heart and exercise of choice
bravely, without regret or sentimental lingering
if you are feeling frightened

by who you have become, change
dare to enjoy the present like never before
retrace your steps, rediscover who you are

it’s never too late, you’ll find your
way again, where hopes lead you
challenge yourself to find bliss
don’t be afraid to experience, say “yes”

for experience is the heart of necessity
if you don’t rush after it
life will force you to meet her

life is not about possession
life is about tasting, doing, being, watching
moving, travelling, loving, thinking
dangerously even, for life passes you by

a place where happiness and sadness collide
forcefully, creatively, passionately
be the hero of your own story

find friendships that intrigue you
fall in love with hobbies that move you
read philosophers that challenge you
make music that haunts you

have sex like your mean it
listen to your being without judgement
that small voice who enjoys giving

live without condition, for destiny
always intended to work with you
not through you, fate completes you
your journey needs your enthusiasm.

36

whispering the unsung sex


35

the wild flowers know where it begins
a sweet resistance of eyes
that melts where love drips

behind the petals of hushed uncertainties
where our bodies flower for a while
intoxicated spirits meet like
dragonflies, with no hiding places

not found out by our passion’s wick
where burns a slow peace to drink
pleasure on the burning stove

of youth’s dripping with ecstasy
our hot and quickening breaths not meek
with heated tongues for blessing’s approval
where destiny might mesh

softness and hardness, begging for
a chance to be loved again
and kisses that stray from the lips

slow rhythms that mount for comfort
the comfort of the moment, in the dark
full of an insistent guide to gasp
the smiling of our bodies in a stroke

to dance in erotic foreign substance
this first time, to climax together and release
with an ease of laughter and the heart’s reply

that’s the taste of beloved skin
a secret reinforcement that started
when your dress came off like the crescent moon
only to sigh for and listen for signs of entry

to the perfect palace where all secrets
come and go, that first press of the star
of our sex, whispering a song so ancient

it stings, with thin resistance weak
too tired to ache, to loving to ignore
our bodies border fingertips of young love
the union of our spirits the fruit we make.

global connectivity


32

it’s survival here, nothing new
lungs knotted by thirst
sunheat in our heart, starving to belong

it’s corrupt the way
the social feeds are telepathic
last chance for freedom
not likely, when water goes on the stock-markets

I’m pinned by this world
like as the love for my criminal child
the kind of wound that

is never quite urgent enough to heal
but sticks around like deformity
“heal the world”, there are too many
bodies you say to feed the planet

it’s survival down here, at the ends
stomach growling to be someone
heart’s pitter-patter against the gloom

our fragility was really contagious
the world learned how
to suffer together, it was a kind
of progress, to realize we all belonged

to the same economy, a doomed currency
where the sun was thrown, raised and lowered
for the number of years we had left

before some tipping point of our anarchy
until we have to depart, to say goodbye
we make do, with teaspoons and testimony
with words from vague saints who were cripples

we learned to see, a bit of ourselves
in everyone who suffered, in how they fought.

art courtesy of: http://www.deviantart.com/art/Global-Warming-86554791

to know the future


31

You may wonder why, I’m not
describing the landscape for you
it’s not my business as a poet anymore

you have eyes and a soul as wide
as a universe, eyes for
hieroglyphics and physics
a heart made of pure alchemy

if you’d only believe it
It was not my fault, that
Your animal journey was tragic

we all had elements of hooves, tongues, teeth
in our jungle journals of journeys
Our poetry was not for prophecy
our language was not to add details

to the human flesh of beauty
but to accept the sea as pure blue
to paint sunsets for cunning departures

in order to become a new person
where the plots did not suffocate us
but rather make us smile
at the irony of so many perilous colors

creation’s fresh monsters come to life
you may wonder why, I’m no longer with you
but in your memory, I’m the solid blood

that ran through you waiting
for the snakey orange eye of your future
the soft wobbling of the flower
for the most intense love of stars.

Nevertheless-es


30

people came from all lover
to consult me about love
their relationship stories

I swallowed eagerly, like a poet
I made no choice
I decided nothing
my days were liquid sky

unaccountable water of drunk stars
I was the last muted syllable
of sunsets, and proud as words

words that decided nothing
words that dreampt of nevertheless-es
the food people demand for the journey
is simple, a little recognition

for their skinny-ribbed suffering
people came from all over
to read me like an oracle

their eyes pried on my soul
my spirit a spy of the world.

I name them here


29

love has seven names
do you know what they are?
brightness, flame, melting

transformation, sunshine, shine
Light, that final healing
that is the end and is the beginning
these are the warmth of heart-strings

where the soul may rest in
clearest water, purity of unity
truth that is not true or false

but simply is as an extension
of love that has seven names
love appears day after day
not requiring scripture or even faith

love is wise enough in nature
to survive indefinitely, with or without you
her signs fall down from the fusion

of peculiar and eccentric evolution
crossing divinities of perspective
of virtue and the flesh’s form
love has seven names

her gifts are never-ending
like sublime coal that burns a lifetime
for an intimacy that God can give

for our intimate souls that long
more strongly with a mystical heat
that is a spiritual substance
whose radiance is a kind of love

we are both seized by the same heat
and coming like a breeze, or laughter
we both pause, and do the same thing

as all love is identical
think about it, it’s all the same
What comes behind the sweetness
of a name? love has seven names

nothing but wounds and kisses
year after year, again and again.

after taking vows of poverty


Hadewijch_pstr.indd

All miracles are too small
when God holds me tightly
i become so vast, and see through
so many eyes, in the uncentered will
of created things, billions of worlds
tremble in my heart beat

all things are too small
to hold me then, not this body
not this personality, not this fate
or these lifetimes of dream
we’ve living miracles in
an uncertain world, just to survive

when i touch the infinite
it undoes me, and I become
a bit a part of everything else
that’s when I know, I am nothing
everything else is too narrow
not language, not experience, nothing

can replace the reach of uncreated things
whose intelligence is everywhere
whose search is always over
because it is found, by itself
in every act, in every breath, every prayer
of any creature, in any corner

of the universe, you know this well
you are also there, you also feel
all things, behind your senses.

The Sanctuary


27

it could be said Nature’s feet
are so vast, they stretch
from star to star like pillows of light

in a web of black-hole portals
star-gates as swift as one body
touching itself, a supernova
is her pinching herself

the cosmos as one body
love stretching as far as all life
that this entire earth is but

her field somewhere on her toe
and her view is as vast
as a river of stars, a forest of dark matter
her quantum sanctuary is secret

hidden behind time itself, made holy
by creatures praying and seeking
a cathedral where all souls go

when they kneel to touch her presence?
it could be said nature is open
mutable to turn into whatever form of God
the people require, in their evolution

one day an alien, another day a supercomputer
or myths and prophecies for our ancestors
or a convenient map of history, for scientists.

God is a She


26

I first saw God at the age of four
she was everywhere, in everything
like a scar of beauty in the depths
hanging on each leaf, like a bud

the cheeks of the sun were pale before Her
and the earth acted shy for her Will
consumed in her grace, I was in awe
of how divine light entered my heart

from where she was, i understood
what adults did not, through indeed
I was in a was destined to forget
just how many times faith can flicker

and just how easily God consumes us
in her grace, from some beloved finite
moment of tenderness, expanding
to all moments, until all is a meditation

with her bliss, that is when
time ends in vulnerability, and I laughed
“I won’t take no for an answer, sweet God”
I’ve been looking for you, for your lifetimes

vulnerable like an infant, tired like an old man
I’ve been holding hands for the moment
like when they kiss sometimes when nobody is watching
the sun and the moon, god and nature

why are they so shy in front of us?
heaven’t we all seen somebody making love?
I’ve seen what I want in heaven’s shop
bought a lifetime of prayer just to feel her gold
I wanted to be a hermit and hear only her hymns.

Art credit goes to: http://www.deviantart.com/art/The-Goddess-211650385

THE DAWN SINGERS


25

After all these collisions
with the abrupt license to write
these dreamy plagiarisms
as if words belonged to a mouth
the month of poetry became

a lifetime of habit, a sport
of inarticulate genius
of hope strewn in museums
blue transparent halls of journals
I still mutter quietly

spells for sweet memories
grasping at disappearing truths
i contemplate language, the soul
of symbols, the spirit behind a tongue
the last word i said

The word is Yes, yes to
white fragile voices
that linger for a while
these lyrics that spin
until loving is not enough

it must be written down
as if for eternity
the profound nature of saying
I will live forever trapped
on a page for you or nobody to read

smuggling lanterns as ancient as the seas
across the myths I once believed
were real, the news of my country
the land of my being
and the solace of my art

i’m proud to be trapped here
soon i will no longer have a voice.

Photo Courtesy of: http://www.deviantart.com/art/dawn-46952780

mars circa 2092


24

between arms of sand
and idols of soul
the pioneers had no place

to come together
like a pre-dawn era
of a Martian humanity

global warming was stranger
than fiction for earth
her oceans as snap-shots

of an ancient woman raped
the women of Mars were different
violently passionate for a new world

to save a new society
from the same mistakes of earth
naked is the mind that remembers

history, and ruin, and greed
relentless is biology
to progress, to adapt, to shine again

the unreality of surviving
cosmic events, bigger than decades
caressed by lucrative futures

the buttocks of the testimony
towards a body of divinity
the whirlpool of disappearances

was a common phenomena
extinction points dotted history
along untouchable horizons of what was

what occurred here, the solstice of cities
bizarre pleasure founded cities
in an a rise to luxury that was to be

a consumption of all resources
who knew, it was to end on these
martian plains, the new children

a strand in the language of the tree of life
where body spilt with the sweat of ancestors
a slow terraforming, invention of a true colony.

history of man


22

If man is dust
those who go through plains
are men

if woman is jewel
those who visit unanimous beauty
are women

so fond of travelling
so fond of creating
i did not drink plenitude in vacuity

i only witnessed it there
a while, until my bones
melted like popular seeds

gazing at the sky
until the turquoise heights took me
and i was a child once again

looking out into the sea
ready to pull the curtain
on this immense forest of breathing

murmuring with a hundred desires
if humanity is a need
those who act and speak

must be human, at the dance of hours
at the brink of extinction
phantoms of what were once corporeal creatures

soldiers in a manipulated biology
i write knowing what the world
is becoming, an organism

of a most probable quantum machine
a lost algorithm of evolution
that grasps the lonely form of what
it feels like to be alive.

Photo Courtesy: http://www.deviantart.com/art/Glance-of-history-106320648

cosmos osmosis


21

i want to go beyond the ordinary
moments scatter themselves
like a dream that never truly wakes
i have slept the dream of stones
and premonition for the light
the magic reflections that resurrect
i have been endlessly falling

since my own birth, i can hear
whispers from the house of death
where fate and the quest for meaning ends
at least for self, day is an immortality
of many days for living’s other birthplace
everything speaks to the dawns
the pulse of life is an inexpressive presence

which doesn’t need us, not me, not anyone
it just advances and retreats
goes roundabout arriving forever
deep among the dream of years
but doesn’t call time, “time”
time is not relevant to that
invisible flowers become visible

a timeless sun doesn’t care for billions
it only caters for eating an orange of light
enormous, as is the life of constellations.

THESE ARE THY WONDERS


20

how fresh o lord is your morbid flower
that plays with spring as in a dream
and returns in so many other colors

only to redeem the world with fragrance?
how strange is the land of evening
beauty so strange to reincarnate flowers

to which all grief melts away
in a garden of lush belonging
that says: “this too can happen on the earth”

like snow in may and blooms in december
i should suggest we learn a bit from flowers
how to act, to smile when the sun comes out

and to rejoice simply by the effort it takes
to say hello, to another down the road
these are thy wonders here, the pleasures

which run fast in paradise, for petals
and the dew, for flowers can wither fine
there will be another, after this shower.