COURAGE TO LIVE, COURAGE TO DIE

COURAGE TO LIVE
COURAGE TO DIE

Which
calls forth more
courage
in me?

Living or Dying?

Courage calls me
to die daily.
That is what
meditation
invites.

Courage calls me
to live fully
here, now.
That is why
I meditate
every day.

Are living and dying
the Two infallible Faces
of
creation’s existence?

Will living and dying
expand and perfect
my essence and my
destiny?

For me,
to live is
to realize
my own Inner Christ,
my own cosmic
perfection
of Spirit and Matter.

For me to live
is to embody
my human/divine
nature,
suffering and reconciling
all opposites
within my body
and psyche.

For me,
to die is to let go
of every attachment,
of every external dependence,
and
to surrender to the
Unborn Tomorrows
of unlimited
growth and glory.

For me, to live is Christ,
and to die is to gain
more of
my True Self.

May 31, 2014
Wauconda
Hal Edwards

MOTHER, DO YOU LOVE ME?

MOTHER, DO YOU LOVE ME?

 

Her entire childhood

perfectly obliterated

from memory,

I kept hearing her

all too familiar response,

“I…don’t…know.”

Over and over

across the years

whenever I asked her

about anything

relating to her

childhood

or youthful years,

her only response was

the same muffled phrase,

“I…don’t…know” or

“they…tell…me…that…”

Absolutely zero recall.

It was as if she did not

have a past,

did not have a childhood,

did not have connection

to those formative years.

I was thirty-seven

when I got up the courage

to ask my most important

question.

I rehearsed it many times,

fantasizing what she would say.

“Mother, do you love me?”

I was determined this time

during my visit back home

to ask every question

I was afraid to ask her.

We had the opportunity.

It was in her dining room

where I remembered countless

holiday gatherings

with relatives and friends.

We were finally alone

and “now” was the time to

ask THE big question.

It was going to be,

“Do you love me?”

I opened my mouth to

speak those dangerous words.

Something strange happened.

Something took charge

of my tongue

and a totally unrehearsed

and utterly new question

emerged from my mouth:

“Mother, tell me

about your father….”

I felt I was marshaled

outside time and space

as those words spoke me.

Both of us stood face to face

in no man’s land.

The bizarreness of that experience

brings chill bumps,

forty-three years later,

as I revisit that

seminal moment in time.

Unexpectedly, her eyes opened wide

into an altered state,

and she stared through my eyes

into the pit of my stomach

and into the core of my soul.

“They tell me….”

“They tell me I was five years old.

Papa came home from WWI

gassed and about to die at

twenty-five years of age.

I was five years old at the time.

They tell me….

that he took me in his arms

and danced me

around the dining room table….

and I never saw him again.”

Her eyes connected into my heart

and immediately

an insight flashed upon my

psychic screen—

“Mother you could not give me

what you never got.”

My entire world changed

in a split second.

My mother, no longer

my detached biological mother

whose safe and soft mother-love I

did everything possible

to earn.

Instantly she became

this innocent, precious,

fragmented and

childless

lost little girl.

I opened my arms

and she melted her

small bony frame

into my gentle embrace.

“Mother…I love you,”

I whispered into her gray hair.

“I…love…you…too,”

she slowly whispered back

as she rested safely

in my soft embrace.

From that day on,

whenever we finished

our phone calls,

she always said,

“I…love…you…”

It was on my watch

when her eyes

once more, and finally,

penetrated our lifetime

of untold stories

and merged with my

soul.

I held her

and gently touched

her thin white hair.

Her breath rattled

her final story.

“Mother, I love you so much,”

I whispered.

“Thank you

for being my Mother.”

Breathing her last,

her eyes went blank

as I rocked her

liberated and listless frame;

sweet hot tears bathing my cheeks,

I gently closed her eyelids

and kissed her forehead.

 

Hal Edwards

January 29, 2015

Wauconda, IL