Creative Commons license courtesy James Marvin Phelps

Creative Commons license courtesy James Marvin Phelps


My mind often acts like a mule
Though I know that it’s not being cruel.
When I sit on the cushion
Its pullin’ and pushin’
Makes me feel like I’m caught in a duel.

As the dear beast tries to lure me astray
In time I will wake up and say
Come back, little mule
Take a look at this jewel
and feel what it’s like just to stay.

My mule will respond to the gleam
And awake from its self-serving dream
To find that pure refuge
Unaffected by deluge
Of thoughts which are nothing but steam.

Staying present with things as they are
And not chasing some things off afar
Brings me moments of solace
As I see the jewels flawless:
The perfection, the teachings, and we are.

Like the whittling of wood, life can grind us
‘Til the truth of our self finally finds us
Or, if instead we resist
Then the knots will persist
And instead of them freeing, will bind us.

Shall I follow a guru or guide?
Or stay with my teacher inside?
After all, which is better
To loosen or fetter
To authority in- or outside?

In the guidance of sire Kalimán
As intoned to young Mexicans
“Controlling the mind
Dominates all in kind” (*)
Seems forceful, macho, and wan.

For myself, I’ve been finding that force
Leads most often to bouts of remorse
To who’s weak or strong
Or who’s right or wrong
And that love is a more powerful course.

(Originally posted on 30 Poems in 30 Days)

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