SEVEN PRAYERS WRITTEN IN THE SPRING OF 1974

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I WILL LEAN INTO YOUR VOICE

I will drink your voice as a willow drinks the wind.
The terror of your nails!
The meat of your presence!

The seed bull enters his herd with a trumpet!
Grackles fly out of maple trees, shaking their limbs as if in a seizure.
The magnificent Eye that sees all creatures afloat in Itself
sees me!

I want to run my hand over the nylon covering your void.

Let me call your name.

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Lord Krishna Bewilders Brahma

PRAISING KRSNA

Standing on a lake, playing his flute,
golden dhoti waving, giving birth to wheat fields in the air.
Worlds, men and women tangled with stars
are streaming from the flute!

He speaks his own name and universes leap into being.
He keeps quiet and everything is gathered back into Being.
He stops playing and eats a mango.

Over a sourceless, sounding lake he walks
every footstep leaving a child waking up in the water
of the Mother’s womb.

We are praising you Krsna,
praising you Krsna,
Krsna!

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Photo of bee taken on the road to the White Salmon River.

Photo of bee taken on the road to the White Salmon River.

I LOOK IN THE INFINITE DIRECTIONS OF THE EYE

I look in the infinite directions of the Eye.
See your face upon the Earth,
the circle of your mouth,
your teeth like white geese whose beaks point toward the sun.
Hear a caravan of wind, a shipment of breezes,
thunder carrying your Voice over the farms.
You are the Ark and the flood that lifts the Ark.

I am calling you like a young tree frog calls for his mate in the night.
I am calling like a cricket to the moon.

I want to be stripped of limitation, forced full of lights.
I want to be a raining presence of affection,
to stand naked before you
and give myself wholly to the river off your glance.

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PRAYING IN A HORSE PASTURE NEAR MIDNIGHT

I enter through a wound
going down into the world
where fire walks, embodied in blood.

I walk into the fire and I burn
upside down in a suit of ashes.

Near midnight
I drink words from a broken cistern,
words and ashes mixed together.

I want the earth never to have existed!
I want colors going back into light!
I am afraid of little breezes touching my arm!
See wings made of moon light beating in the dark!

Something in me wants the iris to float out of my eyes,
wants me to be old, to surrender to the sky,
give up to the floating scenery I am described by.
I want that too!
I want to disappear, become all this.
I want to be with you and to know you.

Come down to this pasture where long eared donkeys bray.
Come down from the tower of the trees
or bring me up.

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HEARING TREE FOGS IN THE RAIN

Hearing tree frogs in rain, I draw back the curtains,
let their clear syllables fall across my boots.

Last night we slept together touching ankles.
Now I stand at this window
holding in my hands the green light of cedars.

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bee in flight on the road to the White Salmon River

bee in flight on the road to the White Salmon River

I SPEAK OF THE NEW BIRTH!

I speak through a cylinder of foam
birds raging in my throat.
A season of nails falls from my hands,
my feet.
The sky slides into my shoulders.

I am not this, I am not that!
The hundred angles of my smile attach to light.
I speak of the new birth!
Nothing is tangled.
The star is a star after all.
The coil is a river and the river is my self.

Watch for me, where I fly in the body of an oriole,
an answer without a question!

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PRAYING BY A CATTLE TANK

I want to be touched by the nameless Presence.
I want my lips to be leaves of fire!
But there are flies on the surface of the cattle tank.
A mare with a belly like a church house has come down
to drink the water.
From where I sit, I  see
the jawbone of a cow that bloated in winter and died.
See a blue jay, everything eaten but its feathers!

I hold my hands up against the land, the sky, oak trees
without end.

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