Sunday, June 30, 2013


        Implicitly the Cosmos has design,
        Just as I hold the pattern in my mind
        Of how this sonnet’s feet and rhymes align
        With where some latent motive is inclined.

        One cannot see the sonnet’s form until
        It’s filled with what at last grows manifest,
        Expressing clearly its inherent will
        Confined till then within its covert chest.

        In fact just as this poem’s lines emerge,
        The universe at large evolves in time
        When motive, mass and energy converge
        As readily as reason does with rhyme.

            Consider then the universe as verse
            Writ large; or this the universe, but terse.


Friday, June 28, 2013

G. O. D.

      Good Orderly Direction may not be
      The God most soulful people yearn to see,
      Who’d rather have their lord personified,
      A cosmic friend in whom they can confide,
      A kingly comforter who may sustain
      And save them from their suffering and pain,
      A Father/Mother figure up above,
      A bounteous, endless, hallowed source of love.

      Instead, what even science now admits
      (Cosmologists who exercise their wits
      To comprehend the universal laws),
      Is that there does exist a primal cause,
      A Source implicit with what may unfold—
      And that’s the truest story ever told.


Wednesday, June 26, 2013


The proper aim of a liberal education is to liberate you from ideas, customs, and practices detrimental to the flourishing of life and mind on Earth and beyond.

The accumulation of knowledge and the grasping of principles, systems and theories are a large part of education’s project, yet all that enterprise must aim to serve our highest goal of wising up to discern what is of greatest value to life, and then bringing it to light.

Your liberal education, then, must be informed by the motive of value and the ultimate question of “What really matters?”  Why does language matter or literature or all the other arts?  What’s the good of the various sciences and social sciences, how can they be applied to life’s needs, and how can they be improved?

A liberal education should not be designed to inform you in the sense of filling you with information; rather, it should help form your mind, your thinking processes, so that you can fare well—creatively and productively—on your life’s journey in the cosmos.


Sunday, June 23, 2013


The aim of a liberal education is liberation.  Although a liberal education may be pursued formally in college, it begins at home and in school, and then contines throughout one’s post-graduate years informally via personal initiative as a life-long effort to free oneself from ignorance and ineptitude, in the course of growing both capable and wise, for the benefit of others as well as oneself.

Earth needs liberally educated human beings to sustain its viability, to promote the flourishing of its various species and the integrity of its biosphere—countering those whose ignorant or malicious behaviors now harm our precious home planet.

To grow knowledgeable, capable and wise for the sake of fully realizing the miracle of our existence is our implicit destiny unfolding now on Earth—and beyond.


Saturday, June 22, 2013


As an endangered species, how do we human beings need to proceed into the future so as to flourish on a flourishing planet and beyond?

When the crew of the fictional spaceship Enterprise boldly explore our galaxy, expressing the adventurous human quest for knowledge and greater capability, they embody the perennial spirit of adventure and advancement that characterizes humankind at its best.

Our continuing human enterprise is to explore the further reaches of our potentials, consciously and conscientiously evolving to liberate fully the wisdom implicit in our hopefully-named species: Homo sapiens sapiens.

A liberal education, properly designed, should aim at that very goal of realizing our highest potentials for knowing and growing, for maturing and achieving that which best serves the expansion of consciousness in the cosmos.

That would be wise.


Friday, June 21, 2013


           What is more elemental than the bond
           Of love that binds us to another soul:           
           A mother to her child and then beyond            
           Until at last we learn to love the whole?


Thursday, June 20, 2013


    Before too many brain cells wink and die,
    I eagerly anticipate that I
    Might soon return to cosmic consciousness,
    A higher kind of gnosis that might bless
    A charmed and favored few, as once it did
    My adolescent soul—then shut the lid.

    That “taste of honey” lingered through the years,
    Alluring me to seek out other seers,
    Authentic visionaries who reveal
    What ordinary sciences conceal,
    Confined to dim materiality—
    Transcended by the mystic’s ecstasy.

         Though for so many years I’ve traveled blind,
         I hope again to know the Cosmos’ mind.


Wednesday, June 19, 2013


      Of all the ways to apprehend what is,
      Which way is most insightful and profound,
      Devised to lead to transcendental bliss
      Accessing ultimately Being’s ground?

      For all the knowledge science has procured
      On the observable material plane,
      Beyond the physical there lies immured
      A spirit realm some venturers attain.

      Or so they say, but second-hand report
      Will not suffice or gratify my need
      To know directly in my private court
      Of judgment, where experience must lead.

           Therefore, I shall proceed to find the means
           To verify such supernatural scenes.


Tuesday, June 18, 2013


 for Christopher Bache

I willingly suspend my disbelief
In what I know that’s just intuitive;
Though scientistic minds will give me grief,
The gnostic’s is the holy way to live,
Which is to say, there’s knowing that transcends
Materiality in space and time,
A cosmic consciousness that recommends
A kind of reasoning that’s more like rhyme
Than logic or the rationality
Pertaining merely to what’s manifest;
A deeper realm that’s implicate I’ll see
When I acknowledge what I’ve long suppressed.
     The greatest barrier is always fear:
     That gone—who knows what Visions may appear?


Monday, June 17, 2013


      Let’s say it’s so, and I’ve been born before,
      Returning many times to life on Earth,
      Though always with amnesia at the door
      Making my entry seem my only birth.

      My Higher Self, my Soul, contrives this ruse,
      A kind of hide-and-seek, so I might grow
      In karmic clarity and disabuse
      My Earthly self of what is merely show,

      Coming at last to recognize the Light
      Pervading all materiality,
      My consciousness attaining to new height
      And realizing why I came to be.

           That this may be, I now just speculate,
           The first step toward a truth I might create.


Sunday, June 16, 2013


        “The Devil made me do it, you might say,        
        Or, “It just happened to befall poor me,”        
        Or “Fate determines how I go my way”—        
       Thus you avoid responsibility.   
       A better way sees opportunity        
       Awaiting every one of us each day,       
       For there are many happy ways to be— 
       Unless from love and righteousness we stray.


Saturday, June 15, 2013


              Though I’m doing the best that I can,
                   I still need to be doing lots better;
              So I’ve got to come up with a plan
                   To win me a varsity letter,

              'Cuz less than I can be won’t cut it:
              I won’t walk it or run it—but strut it!


Thursday, June 13, 2013


   A poessay is more than just a lyric;
   It aims to sing yet also be empiric,
   A tuneful way to find what I’ve to say
   Setting it in a form devised to stay.

   There’s magic in the web of such a song,
   A beat that carries subtle thought along
   As from the depths of the Mysterium
   New matter rises and ideas come.

   To write in plain expository prose
   Will often make a sleepy reader doze;
   But add a beat, anticipate a rhyme,
   Then hear what was prosaic turn sublime.

        The message you have sent may be the same,
        But one in poetry wins more acclaim.

* * *

      While a lyric poet sings and minds his notes
      Attending to the feelings he emotes, 
      And one whose line is narrative will tell 
      A tale to enchant you with its cunning spell, 
      My kind of verse straight-forwardly explains,
      Less aimed at feet or hearts than curious brains.
      My poessays are expositional, 
      My attitude that of a knowing pal 
      Who’s onto something that might interest you, 
      A line of thought I’d coax you to pursue, 
      And yet as much as you, or more, I find 
      That as I write I grow the more aligned 
      With what it was I thought I had to say—
      Though without verse, I’d never find my way.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013


for Paul H. Ray

           The aim of all this Earthly enterprise
           Appears to be to let our kind grow wise;
           We’ve even named ourselves to recognize 
           The sapience we’ve yet to realize
           Since something errant in us still defies
           That wisdom culture we must now devise.


Tuesday, June 11, 2013


for Joseph Jaworski

      It seems we’ve put the cart before the horse
      In claiming that from matter mind arises;
      With clearer thinking now we find the Source
      Of everything is mind, in many guises.

      So if you’re of a mind to be creative,
      You’d best appeal to something deep within,
      A generative power now seen as native,
      Whence everything emergent must begin.

      By doing so you then participate
      More consciously in how the universe
      Continuously arises to the state
      That it assumes, for better or for worse.

           The mindful way of living then is best
           If you’d live in a world that’s truly blest.


Monday, June 10, 2013


      Let theorists far more astute than I
      Determine how the Universe performs,
      Explaining every What and How and Why,
      From micro-matters to galactic storms.

      Does mind come first and matter later,
      Or does from particles a mind evolve?
      A miracle each way and neither greater,
      Yet both a mystery I cannot solve.

      It’s all that I can do to form a verse,
      No universe, but yet a microcosm,
      Which calls for all the powers my wits disburse
      Suckling at Mother Universe’s bosom.

           Yet of both options that I’ve seen displayed,
           I’d say the Maker comes before the made.


Sunday, June 9, 2013


 A verse like this is fashioned to enchant,
 For while it lasts it casts a little spell;
 Let other kinds of writing rage or rant,
 Intending to explain, complain or tell.
 A sonnet though, above all, means to sing,
 And while this one is too expository,
 The best of them can make the welkin ring
 Displaying artistry in all its glory.
 The sonnet’s verse turns easily on the tongue
 Not marching on but dancing gracefully,
 Not shouted or declaimed but sweetly sung,
 Inducing at the best an ecstasy.
      In only fourteen lines a little play’s
      Performed that wakes us from our mundane daze.


Saturday, June 8, 2013


      A sonnet, say, or any formal verse
      Is not a hindrance but a keen device
      Provoking your Unconscious to disburse
      A wealth of new ideas and entice
      Your mind and memory to invent or find
      Some way to say what only will occur
      When conscious and subconscious are aligned
      So memory and imagination stir.
      Just as electric energy's constrained
      To flow within a filament of wire—
      How light and heat are both obtained,
      A novel way to gain what we desire—
           So is it that a sonnet can be made
           Only when stringent measures are obeyed.


Friday, June 7, 2013


      When I am low, when life has shoved me under,
      One thing uplifts me from hopeless despair;
      One thing refills me with reviving air:
      It’s wonder, wonder, wonder, wonder, WONDER.


Thursday, June 6, 2013


       I’ve come into this life with gifts to give
       And talents I must turn to mastery,
       Because the only rightful way to live
       Is realizing my identity:

       Becoming who I am essentially
       And then contributing what meets the needs
       Of fellow creatures’ insufficiency—
       Such is the essence of all holy creeds.

       It matters not what deity may be:
       The “One True God” is but the Rightful Way
       For each of us to live: compassionately,
       Ensuring Dignity will rule the day,

            Each one of us arrives here on the Earth
            Replete with infinite potential worth.


Wednesday, June 5, 2013


for Karen Armstrong

    Above all other laws there’s one command
    That throughout history has been repeated,
    Applying to all folk of every land:
    To treat each other as you would be treated.

    This Golden Rule of reciprocity
    Implies we have compassion at our core,
    That fellow-feeling comes spontaneously,
    Forefending us from rivalry and war.

    And yet we know this Rule is over-ruled
    More often than it’s generously applied,
    Which means we must be scrupulously schooled
    Lest what is mandatory be defied:

         By being loved, we learn to love another
         And grow to each a sister or a brother.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

          Religion that declares authority        
          Commanding trust in what no one can see        
          Or properly infer by reason’s rules,         
          Appeals to those who willingly are fools.        
          It’s not belief or faith I want to own;        
          It’s knowledge sure and certain as a stone:        
          Though mystical or transcendental, it        
          Must absolutely be both meet and fit        
          To answer all opposing arguments,        
          Proving it makes irrefutable sense.


Monday, June 3, 2013


   This could, of course, be my last day on Earth
   Or anywhere, for all I surely know,
   A thought that makes me ponder on the worth
   Of what I’ve done and where I’ve yet to go,

   And whether if, indeed, there’s more to come
   Beyond the veil of death—another round,
   Another realm—a mystery I can’t plumb,
   About which many theories abound.

   Why not choose one and live pragmythically,
   As if what I most hope for is the case,
   Simply supposing what appeals to me
   Is that which generates the greatest grace?

        I thus declare that in the great Beyond
        We shall transcend what here we call Despond.


Sunday, June 2, 2013


  Suppose it’s true, as testimonies tell,
  That as we think, we’re either ill or well,
  That we are not our bodies but our souls,
  Who reappear in many earthly roles,
  And that beneath all corporality
  Designed by mind resides a Mystery.

  All this is easy just to brush away
  As silly superstition Truth will slay
  When scientists who measure and observe,
  Restricted by the premises they serve,
  Report that nothing metaphysical
  Exists: the world is all material.

       And yet some few have found their way to Mind,
       That Source by which all bodies are defined.


Saturday, June 1, 2013


     For those not keen on the idea of God
     Replete with majesty of crown and rod,
     A newer notion, less personified,
     And not inclined to thunder and to chide
     Has now emerged in consciousness as Source:
     A more prolific notion to endorse,
     A Providence whose aim is to provide,
     A matriarch in whom we can confide,
     A womb from which beatitude proceeds.
     The Source of what each creature dearly needs,
     This plentiful benevolence avails
     Itself like wind to those who raise their sails,
     Like manna falling from the empty sky,
     An energy we need not deify.