Kindling The Light

My neighbor, a Vietnam vet, yelling at his dog,
Who only gets more anxious –
I tell him,
He disagrees
I pet the dog,
Calm him,
Both our hearts race

The Vietnam vet, boiling my blood pressure as my father did countless,
On childhood days when I did not understand my biology was being twisted,
Like the poor, anxious dog, who barks wildly after I leave, to more yelling

So I’ll take him out again soon for another hike,
Where I’ll talk to him,
Stop and pet him, hug him

Cooling our hot blood,
Soothing our nerves
Nature, in its moments, gives us a purpose, together and alone
Something other than life to focus on, outdoors

A place where no one yells at you
Where you are equal to every living thing
Where you can just be,
Thinking what comes most naturally because you are free

For, as the book I now read tells me:

“You are like everyone else, “an infant crying in the night” – something trying to be made whole, something with a deep yearning for security, a deep and unspeakable longing for love, for protection, and for peace.”

But here’s the sad irony:

My neightbor yells at dog because he is anxious
His dog barks and whines – an anxious response
This is energy
It does not always bolster – it stings, burns, scars

Sometimes it twists like missing someone,
Sometimes it scares, like yelling,
Sometimes it hurts, like hitting –
And sometimes it still does,
When it’s over and it’s dark and night, and quiet

When it should be peaceful,
It remains caustic inside –

And love is the answer,
Convince me otherwise
Only, the dog doesn’t know how to love his hurt,
The child doesn’t know how to love her hurt

And the adult still sometimes doesn’t know how
After decades on earth
And the offspring are nervous
And the cycle continues

For what?
Survival…
Because our human hardware is one-hundred-thousand-years-old
And the amygdala, in the dog and the human,
The mirror of emotional learning,
Responds, making us want the love more, anxiously

But the whining dog, like the needy human, who needs it most, wants it most,
Is often rebuffed

And rarely in it’s existence
– fuck, he’s barking in the distance as I write this poem –
Rarely in her existence does the nervous, scared child ever know The Calm
Because for as great as this world is, it’s not that loving

Look at what we love, we vote with our dollars
While our families, our friends, our kids, our pets, ourselves
We all shudder inside, for want of love, which is The Calm
And there is only one among a thousand and two among ten thousand who know it,
Who can generate it,
Share it, kindle it,
In poems and letters, in the everlasting word, in the bravery of their love,
Which they can give away freely, posessing it wholly – as few do,
Even though they sometimes still feel it, when it’s dark and night and it’s quiet
They kindle it again

We call these people poets, mystics, shamans, teachers, empaths, healers –
And if we are one it is because we were the scared child,
Who kindled our light in the dark,
And in saving ourselves, brightened the world we touched
And brought to light,
All the fear, which still haunts billions – withough repreive

So, if you have light – I say to you:

Do your duty – share it
The world needs you, more than you can ever know

For it is you who are the illuminati,
The illuminated ones, the brights,
Up by the full of the moon,
Kindling the light

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