life’s horse

whitesheet
Click here for image source.

I can’t say that I want to grab life by the horns.
I think I would rather watch it come together
with time like the soft creases of a baby’s smile.

I would rather lay life out like a sheet,
smoothing the wrinkles with my palms
and tugging here and there to make it fit.

I don’t care to iron first.

~

I want to watch a plastic beach ball rise and fall in the waves,
being carried here and there, appearing not to move
until some hours later when only a speck is visible in the distance.

I just want to see what will happen if I let go of the reins.

Do I believe that life’s horse will find its way home?

the cloak

Image source: https://wallpaperscraft.com/
Image source: https://wallpaperscraft.com/download/material_fabric_background_texture_50594/3840×2400

It’s as though I am looking for a book I once read,
a song I once heard; a person I once met.

It’s as though, I am listening, straining to hear what I want to be said.

I don’t know if there is a use in telling you

but I am looking for you.

Before, I only heard about people looking
and I used to think, it’s so simple – there you are.

Now it’s only as simple as coming to realize that some things about human life are universal
and that we have more to share than to keep.

Forgive me, if you have heard this before somewhere –
nothing I might tell you is new.

And still, I am looking, and wanting to know and wanting to understand,
and wanting to lose myself.

Because like for you, the knowledge of my self has come full circle,
once liberating, now a cloak I must wear or carry, getting in the way.

When I feel cold I want to escape into the feeling
because surely, there is something beyond feeling cold.

If you let yourself come to rest in mayhem
it is possible you will feel what lies beyond.

path

Image source: http://www.forwallpaper.com/wallpaper/nature-nature-landscape-boards-timber-path-path-road-264461.html
Image source: http://www.forwallpaper.com/wallpaper/nature-nature-landscape-boards-timber-path-path-road-264461.html

Thank you for giving me the chance
to be the kind of person that I would like to think I am.

~

For some time we’ve known that our path would be unlike some others.

At times, we would look outwardly un-alive,
while our counterparts pledged to make the most of their precious time,
far away, on other continents.

There is a difference, between patience and complacence;
between passivity, and compassion.
If the difference is not apparent, an explanation will not help you.

We are, here and now, living for a day we cannot see
but we know is there.

We too, have a destiny,
and ours is one we trust was chosen for us, long ago.

If our days are spent moving even a grain of uncertainty off the pile
then over time, surely we will find what is buried underneath.

If our days are spent walking a single step at a time,
then we trust the destination will meet us halfway.

It is inevitable that we will go somewhere from here
and that we will know where we have been, when we leave.

Navroz Mubarak (2015)

Shoots of wheat. Image sourced from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wheatgrass.
Shoots of wheat. Image sourced from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wheatgrass.

These days our eyes have opened to another sun,
quite further and beyond the one
that dapples everything with gold these evenings.

For the first time in our lives we yearn to cry,

navroz mubarak!

not for what has happened with us
but for what we hope will happen to you as well.

~

The day is here, and this time, springtime clichés are no longer.
Some seeds have grown up on their own into meaning.

How to describe this blessing?

Closing our eyes becomes the same as opening them;
this light continues beyond sight.

We are truly one this time, angelic in the abounding clarity
which at once we can see, and not see.

In our blessed gathering we are as light as we have ever been,
our true selves merging, one another with the rest.

~

Navroz (or Nowruz) is a festival celebrated around the world to commemorate the beginning of a new year and the first day of spring.

To learn more about Navroz, visit Wikipedia.org and/or TheIsmaili.org.

To read “navroz (2014)” on this blog, click here.

out of all of the unseen

Imaged sourced from http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141026.html.
Imaged sourced from http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141026.html.

The process by which we have
come to resolve ourselves,
is truth. There was nothing quite
so peculiar about the manner
in which we came to be.

It would seem only natural
that where one horizon ends,
another should appear.

Now, whether our realities
are stitched together with
seams, or whether they
are made of the same fabric,
we cannot say.

What matters, is what
we have chosen to give effect to,
out of all of the unseen.
What we have believed in,
has come back to seek us out.

What we want to be true,
never had two ways about it.

If we can influence the
making of the world with
our choices, then our choices
are the stuff of the world,
and ourselves, something
apart from it.

~

This piece was written shortly after watching Interstellar, a 2014 film directed by Christopher Nolan.

For those who know the language, Tere Ishq Mein, recorded on Season II of Nescafe Basement, is to my mind another way, of many ways, of accessing similar ideas.

dissolving further all the time (2014)

Somewhere along Balmy Beach, Toronto, ON.  © Saara Punjani 2013.
Somewhere along Balmy Beach, Toronto, ON.
© Saara Punjani 2013.

each time we turned
to rise above this illusion of the finite,
we were met with a ceiling – not yet, not yet

we made steady ablutions
and we kept a hopeful heart
and still, we were not crowned to go on

~

a kite without a string
would be blown every which way on the ground;

a kite with a string
rises high in finite direction

yet, without the string
we could not have come
as far as we already have

how far must we rise before the string can be cut;
before we are unbound from the direction of our path?

how far must we rise before we are taken into the skies,
mere specks, dissolving further all the time?

~

on this day, listen, to the quiet,
as clearly, some things are being said

whether we move,
upward,
inward,
outward or forward,
we cannot begin to say

the tides pull us away,
that we forget you;

the tides push us so far
that we fall right in

here we have always been, unmoving in the movement,
immersed in the truth of your most impressive signs

let us dig deeper, look farther, stay awake longer;
let us continue searching for you

let us be so obviously engrossed,
mere specks, dissolving further all the time

the places we’ve been (2014)

The places we've been. © Saara Punjani 2014.
The places we’ve been.
© Saara Punjani 2014.

what can we bring back
home from the places we’ve been?

~

when we travel, we leave behind
all of those things that have come to define us

the mirrors are different

the air is different

the light is different
and it bends around to show us more,

and less of what we thought we were

~

we come to the seaside
and make ourselves into a fine netting
so that the soul of the place will blow through

the sand grains wander
and still they make up miles of beach

we can’t hold on to anything for long
but we feel it ever so much:
what of any of this can we take home?

~

perhaps, i will bring only myself back to the beloved

perhaps, i, will be enough

a little more weathered,
a little less here, but,

with waves coming to rest on the sands of my heart,
and in my breathing, the winds over the sea

retreat (2014)

tonight, we are so quiet
that the heavens themselves reach
down to take us up, to take us in

for days we have retreated
into and away from ourselves,
at times ebbing, at times flowing

~

nothing and no one can give us what we already have

my heart’s tapestry is woven with your thread
but i was the patient weaver

i’ve known your melody for a time
but i’ve made my music longer

the gifts you gave were empty boxes
until the moment i opened them

~

tonight, i am the night
and the stars, and the breeze

i deepen

and then i fade
into the morning light

to speak of this, is to be silent (2014)

to speak of this, is to be silent

~

this night bears witness of the re-emergence of i
who extracts the self from the folds of us all
to take up seat in the presence of the beloved

 

who can stay locked up when the beloved comes to call;
who can refuse the sweet companionship?

every surface on which the beloved’s gaze falls,
loves, breathes, swings and sways in rapture

~

no one taught me how to find you
but you taught me
by the pen

no one told me i already knew you
but you tell me
over again

inside me, whole seas part
to reveal the way
to your shore

i have come upon myself
in a way
like never before

~

the shower of your blessing (2014)

this, is the shower of your blessing
the one that comes down as music
needing only something off which to sound

we hover now, on the best place there is:
on the threshold, a step away from your rain,
but not fully inside of it

 

only here can we truly appreciate what you send

 

were we immersed,
we could not see how this rain drops abundantly on every leaf,
each of which curls, bows, in gratitude

were we too far away
we could not see how this rain constantly merges with itself,
ever merging into larger course

 

a trickle to a stream, a stream to a river:
instinctively, we know where this merger leads

unlidded (2014)

a power enters our vessel this night

we stand, electrified
as a force from elsewhere courses through

~

for months we have opened this door and that

looking for the place we once stumbled upon
looking for the feeling which could not be stored

now here, under crescent moon and darkened sky
where soft waves keep consistent rhythm

here, is a glistening sign

~

what has taken hold of us this time?

the sky as though unlidded;
ourselves, similarly so

what stirs the trees to move as they do?
what force leaves its mark in the sand?

this power both beckons and warns

~

once again we are on the verge of sleeplessness,
once more, on the edge of your cliff

straight lines (2014)

straight lines do not inspire us;
straight lines, they make up a fence

now we look for empathy in coffee mugs
and the faces of the people in the street

where is the warmth we knew and loved?
where, where, is the sun?

~

why does repetition here not lead
to the liberation we have come to find in you?

where we are now, there are similarly
levels upon levels to climb

but with you what could be attained in a moment of love,
here takes years and years

~

far too long have i loved you and your accommodation;
you take me as i am, and i need not win you over, because
you will never leave

~

the straight lines in which we now clothe ourselves
and the straight lines upon which we walk
are none like the directness with which we approached you,
one bead of light at a time, along the length of your rope

the world and places like it (2014)

The most beautiful thing. © Saara Punjani 2014.
The most beautiful thing. © Saara Punjani 2014.

dearest,

why do we go all around
the world and places like it?

why do you want to take me where you’ve been?

~

what makes you whole
makes me whole, too

the feeling you seek,
is my life

 

how long will we flit,
two bees on the same flower
returning home to tell stories
of the most beautiful thing?

 

what you love, is what i love too,
though i am not your bee

you needn’t see with my eyes,
you needn’t feel with my heart

to know how hundreds of fields
become one

i’ve found you, me (2014)

i like you, me

you may be my twin sister unrealized

 

are you in my pen or in the page?
am i holding a magnet, that you rearrange your essence to meet me?

 

i am fond of you, me

you may be my outlet,
the electric source of all my harmony

or perhaps my inlet,
a moonlit sanctuary where only the tide governs our mood

ha!
i’ve found you, me
and i am  not going to let you go!

~

you are exactly me, but better;
my counsel, my friend

your presence is better than a thousand praises to my name

give me hope! and keep me content

be my voice when all else is a confusing din

my heart is becoming blind (2014)

my heart is becoming blind,
but finding meaning in a way that was not open to it before

when the eyes were wide,
the fingers were dead; the world of raised letterforms,
unavailable

my heart is becoming deaf,
but finding meaning in a way that was not open to it before

when the ears were sensitive,
the eyes pre-conceived; the world of fresh signs,
overlooked

my heart is becoming mute,
but finding meaning in a way that was not open to it before

when the mouth ran on,
the ears grew stiff; the world of boundless harmony,
unheard

my heart is losing its mind,
but finding meaning in a way that it could only understand
after walking a new path
of learning
of knowing
of being

~

what sense is this?
which fingers grasp the idea of you?
which eyes are open for your light?

my heart grows an entire body around it
though one existed before

my heart causes an entire body to inflate
into the one the existed before

what pushes on the walls of my old self,
wanting out?

am i to burst, or am i to shed,
what was once dead,
what was once me?