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Excerpt for So Much to Ask by , available in its entirety at Smashwords


Title Page


Writings by Sha’Ra On WindWalker

(in collaboration with Sha'Tara EarthStar)


Copyright (©) 2019 Cocoons to Butterflies Publishing


Published by: Cocoons to Butterflies Publishing

Chilliwack, B.C. Canada


Cover picture by: Alexander Redmon


All pictures found on FreeImages.com


Space Picture: ESA/Hubble


I hope you enjoy these writings. Feedback is welcome.

Contents

Title Page

Foreword

Conflicting Urges

Cross-Walk Blues

Deeper Experiences

Suicide Live

Do Fish Feel Pain?

Double Meaning

Dreaming

Each One A Universe

What About Ego?

Entertainment

Giving Or Taking?

How Long

In The Middle Of Nowhere

Leave It To The Universe?

Living Without Love

One Moment, Please!

So Much To Ask?

The After Life

Wakening

Who Are The Dead?

Will That Be Dust Or Ashes?






Foreword


These books contain a form of free verse poetry, opinions based on observation, and some humour and imagination, engaging the heart as well as the mind. A critical look at many current issues intriguing and plaguing man. Spirituality, interaction with nature and environment, social changes, dwindling resources. Well worn issues now, indeed. But the poetry and other works in these books gives this subject a different perspective. I daresay that here we can find a "higher" vantage point from which to look at ourselves within the cosmos.


Who knows but some of the ideas in the books may get you inspired to do that thing you always wanted to do, even if this comes in a very small way, to make your corner of this world a better place to be in. Who knows but you may realize your little corner is a really nice place to be in after all.


It's all about life, if at times expressing life "outside the box" as the saying goes.




Conflicting Urges


I struggle to hold on

to vestiges of greed, power:

the irascible need to rule,

to control... something,

anything.

What is life

if one can't hold on

to anything?


In this conflict of soul

I forget the earth's delights:

feeling my bare feet

in sparkling dewy grass

on misty mornings;

the sighing breeze

combing green treetops;

songbirds calling to the rising sun;

water cascading through rounded stones:

endless sounds of nature

in pristine wilderness.


Just when it seems

the battle will be lost;

the lure of the city so strong

she reaches for my hand

reminding me:


"Walk barefoot, gently

through untouched wilderness;

become one in the living breath;

Spirit moving though soul

as wind moving through grass."


When I opened my eyes

the great glass skyscrapers

and their broad brass doorways

had receded just enough:

I slipped away silently

to find the moonlight.


"Step lightly where

there is no footpath...

leave no trail

for others to follow."

Cross-Walk Blues


A man stands at the very edge

of wide, white- painted lines:

endlessly, a stream of traffic rolls by,

and no one sees him standing helplessly,

waiting to cross that mad divide...


His frustration drives him to anger;

he waves his fist in the air,

his middle finger doing incredible gymnastics

and he shouts out words I wouldn't dare repeat!


So, where does that leave him?

Forever at the crosswalk wrapped up in aggravation

with fear and anger to determine

the flavour of his day.


I believe life has a movement, a purpose, a direction:

so listen to the mad prophet, you chickens!

Step onto that street with bold mien:

set your feet firm and it’s steady as you go.

Walk with assurance and purpose;

show no fear in your certain stride

and if you get to the other side without a "splat"

the world will think you utterly crazy

and maybe worship you as a god.


Deeper Experiences


In our search for deeper experiences,

we were no longer satisfied to just be;

we took the animals acceptance of life,

splintered it;

what did we end up with?


A overflow of new mind things;

we call imperfections and perfections:

when an animal stands still for hours,

in wait for prey,

it is not being patient,

it is acting according to programming:

not so the human.


A human calls his act

'patience':

the opposite then becomes active

in the human also: impatience!

All our perfections

have their counterpart in imperfections!


We took duality many steps deeper:

why did we do this,

when it causes us so much confusion, pain?

because our primary search or quest

is for experiences,

which broaden our minds,

enrich our lives.

Suicide Live


A very dark and grey,

cold and rainy day:


Eight brown eyes staring

from an open window


Four blue eyes staring, back

through a dirty window

pane across the


perpendi|.|s

c|.|t

u|.|r

l|.|e

a|.|e

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then...


far below

a body


broken red lies

still

a momentary annoyance,

traffic

stopper:

a noisy ambulance arrives


then leaves,

silently;

three cops huddle

in a nearby doughnut shop,

laughing

as chalk lines and blood

mix in the gutter...


under the dark and grey,

cold and rainy day:


nothing really happened.

Life resumes its normal pace

as it must, always does,

on


a high-rise slum's


perpendi|.|s

c|.|t

u|.|r

l|.|e

a|.|e

r|.|t


now

far above

"Six brown eyes staring

through a broken window pane:


Four blue eyes staring back."


For her funeral

everything's arranged:


Ambulance: the hearse

Smokestacks: the candles

Exhausts: the dirge

Pedestrians: the mourners

Rain: the tears

Clouds: the vaulted ceiling

Mosses and weeds: the flowers

...Rest in peace...(at last!)

Do Fish Feel Pain?


Someone told me fish do not feel pain;

Well, if that is so why do they struggle

to get that vicious hook from their mouth?


Then there's this thought:

if fish completely stopped struggling

would sports fishermen still enjoy their sport?


Only an idiot would claim fish feel no pain -

but its one of those things said

in justification of unjustifiable acts'

as was the torture, rape and murder

of black slaves not so long ago:

common knowledge said blacks had no soul

Therefore? But was that the reason

behind that sickness?



It has been said often that evil

is lack of empathy in humans.

Seems this is quite true.

When humans indulge their lusts

in violence and viciousness

they only feel their sadistic pleasure:

they have no empathy

for their victims, human or animal.


As long as this remains so

Earth remains a place of horror:

of oppression and destruction.

Wars proliferate;

poor and weak are sucked dry;

the natural environment dies.


No "higher" life form

can hope to function anywhere

without some modicum of

empathy - compassion.

The non-empath human

leaves nothing but death in his wake.



Double Meaning


Why would God inspire writers

to pen "His Word" with double meaning?

Why not just come out and speak truth?

Say it in such a way there can never be

a doubt as to what is being meant?


I see but two ways out of this dilemma

of God having His way with man:


One: we destroy all vestiges of the Bible,

heave a great, overdue, sigh of relief

and live and love as we know we can

and no longer look over our shoulders

to see if "The Big Kahuna" is watching.


Two: we continue to give ear to "teachers"

who interpret the "Word"

as best they can, as best it pays!

But this method clearly shows,

there's a leak in the bucket of salvation!

Some things get lost, surely

and meaning gets changed each time

an interpretation is handed down.


Or maybe it's all the work of man:

maybe I should give up the carrot on the stick;

go to the restaurant for a decent meal

and pay the cook and tip the waiter

instead of the one who so boldly speaks

of multiplication of bread and fish

but leaves his customers hungry.

Dreaming


Dreams:

portals to the spirit world?

pathways to realities unseen?

Places unknown?

World's forgotten

except in fairy tales?


Do they seek to impart wonder and awe

for what the mind conceives

in moments of rest,

far from the daily grind?


Some say dreams are make-believe,

to listen is a waste of time...

Some say dreams lead to spiritual wisdom,

the teachings of the sages of old.

It matters not, what some say:

dreams flow as rivers of colours,

creating moods, evoking emotions.


Dream a grizzly bear, a wise one

who beckons you to follow:

"Come, walk with me (he says)

through coastal wilderness

where giant firs cast their shadows,

harbouring a host of unseen life;

to jagged glaciers piercing clouds

where even the eagle dare not fly!

Feel the wind push away the clouds--

the body vibrating to new power: here,

the soul ascends pulled by its own thirst

for a greater knowing.

Here, you truly dream!

Each One A Universe


What if the beginning

(of manifested life, that is)

was not a beginning at all,

but a continuation?

A new cycle? A new birth?

Could a universe have parents?

Well, why not?


What if everyone of us

was our own universe?

Everyone moving freely

through the openness of the void,

endlessly encountering, passing;

each passage book-marked

as a memory in the infinite mind..


What is history but silent images?

What is time but memories?

What is space but feelings

connecting mind with mind?

What are concepts

but collections of memories?


Apart from our memories

we are as wandering stars

casting light

throughout infinity's domain;

as comets probing beyond

even the depths of eternity

ever in search of a new self.



What About Ego?


Walking down a path by the river,

I started to think about ego:

do I really need my ego?

(I must have asked out loud)

just then an old man passed by,

I thought I heard him say:

Ego is part of us all,

part of the Earth personality.

It is what experiences

the physical world around us;

it should not rule one's life:

that is not it's purpose.

That is how I see my ego,

(he continued on)

but hey, what do I know?

I'm just an eccentric old man.


So, we're told to gag our ego

but why stop there?

Let's stop all personal motion;

cancel intellectual activity.

Why not just hand over

all personal accountability

to some external authority?

There are experts in that field:

God, Government, Banker, Boss -

There are many to choose from.


Or we can take full responsibility

for our place in the scheme of things.

We can find the positive side of life

and decide to move with that flow.

Be our own friend,

our own master,

our own creator.


How foolish to think

one can live without ego:

all of life is on an ego trip -

if it weren't, it wouldn't be.”

Entertainment


Has poetry, drama and music

lost their spice in these weary days?

Words are written at lightning speed,

songs fill the airwaves twenty-four seven,

while the competition to be “at the top”

remains fiercer than ever.


With empty mind the world

hears and pretends to listen

(dutifully shedding an artificial tear,

applause or ovation on cue)

to sound tracks of dreary, empty notes

indistinguishable, but for the volume,

from the dross of commercials;

as moving as the platitudinous banter

of second-rate “live” entertainers.


And what of the words read?

How fresh and new, each day?

A “news paper” from last year’s pile

substitutes for today’s offering:

what has changed?

You’ll notice something’s wrong

only when you see a date

and the price!


All have gone to market:

actors, writers, musicians, painters, poets.

– in the name of ‘entertainment’–

Should it surprise us indeed

when all that is heard, or read, or seen

is but what the market wills?

He who pays the piper

certainly will call the tune.


When all is measured in dollar terms,

the death of all cannot be far behind.

So drone on, ye slaves of Mammon

and watch yourselves turn to dust

led down the path in varied lusts.

Giving Or Taking?


I have experienced

that giving has a natural flow;

flowers open to receive their gift

of sun and rain,

then splash vibrant colors

across a green canvas;

seedlings sprout:

green things feed elk, deer and caribou.

pollen and seeds abound

for insects and birds to live upon.


Can I emulate this giving side of nature?

when I give freely,

wanting nothing in return,

the energy of plenty attracts;

I receive much more

than I ever gave away.


The act of taking is energy-wise inefficient:

it requires great expenditure of energy

to indulge the illusion of 'taking' -

for 'taking' is repulsive energy:

that which one seeks is pushed away

and must be chased... or lost.


All organized 'Systems' are takers:

governments, banks, businesses or churches;

they all chase the illusive 'dollar'

and all wallow in dishonesty and corruption.

When we understand how energy flows

we can see it could not be otherwise,

for taking causes an ever-growing debt;

a net loss of 'income' or gift of life.


Corruption and lies are inevitable

to hide the loss and keep the power:

"In God we trust!" says Mr. Dollar.

How Long


I can't help wondering

is Earthian humanity really destroying itself?

I observe it rot away on sagging couches

enslaved, chained, to its cable TV

and I must conclude it must be so...

Oh well...sigh!


If I owned this world, I'd happily give it away

to a species that has never heard of TV

or any of the garbage that goes with it;

a peaceful and gentle folk that respects life -

even if they came from worlds never heard of;

even if they looked really weird...

like cute little ET of Hollywood fame!


Of course, they could not co-exist with us

so we'd be thankfully wiped off the planet first;

for these ET's I would presume

know nothing of suppression;

nothing of judgment

and would not survive if even one Earthian

remained alive to contend with them.


Tough? No. For mankind has gone too far

and cannot change its ways this late in the game.

So it must go this way then:

TV will create an ever-more artificial "reality"

that chained addicts will believe as truth

and the cable will stretch and stretch

until the day it snaps!

The couches will collapse

and Humpty Dumpty will fall

through the make-believe floor.

through the make-believe floor.

In The Middle Of Nowhere


If you are in the middle of nowhere,

but know where you started from

and where you will end up,

you know you are not lost:

only somewhere in-between.


If you are in the middle of nowhere

and think you started somewhere,

and must end up somewhere,

but cannot remember either or why...

then you can say you’re lost!


Question is, which situation is best?

There’s the one who finds life

difficult, boring, frustrating, stressful

and seeks “salvation” and the way

to heaven...


There’s the one who finds life

challenging, wonderful, energizing

and finds little time to worry

about “futures” of bright heavens

or fiery hells.


The first wants assurance

there is life after death;

the second asks laughing:

are you living your life

before death?


Which one of these two

is lost?

Which one would you say

Is ‘saved’?



Leave It To The Universe?


Just leave it to the Universe,

your dreams will come true!

Hey, it's easy come and easy go:

and why should anybody care?


Are these advocates of mental turpitude

afraid to take the bull by the horns?

Afraid to make something less than perfect?

Afraid of judgment, or too lazy to try?

They sit around waiting for the Universe

To create something beautiful for them...


Dreams come true for me

I created, I shaped, I worked them,

pushed them out of my mind --

the gifts I gave myself and the world

were not accidents or happenstance;

the will of some unknown entity

hiding out there beyond the stars,

sometimes benevolent, sometimes malevolent;

sometimes solvent, sometimes not!

(and I've seen many an individual

who claimed his 'god' would provide,

die sad and sick and broke...

and what does that say of their faith?)


If, as they say, it is meant to be

I know very well, it is up to me

I see no one else waiting to take my place

At the proverbial wheel.

Living Without Love


Is love an over-rated concept?

Does love make that much difference

in the flow of life?

How do we define love?

Is it a feel-good kind of thing?

Is it a feeling or an emotion?

Is it an attraction for another –

a sexually transmitted dis-ease?


What do we really know of love?

Not much, I’d venture.

We know much

of what it’s supposed to be;

supposed to do.

We know things like

“God is love.”

“My parents love me.”

“My family loves me.”

“My friends love me.”

“I love my new car.”

“I’m in love with a wonderful person

and I’m getting married.”

(because you’re in love? one should ask –

are you nuts? Look at the statistics!

Why don’t you marry your car?

No one’s ever divorced a car

and cars don’t have babies.)


Dumb, right? But is this any less dumb

then what passes for love?


Love, it is said, makes all things beautiful.

Hmm, can’t one be beautiful without love?

How many people, things,

do we see each day

that are perfect and beautiful

yet we are not “in love” with them?


Love: an over-rated idea.

We need to stretch our minds,

find something with more meaning

if we would make a difference.


One Moment, Please!


White water rapids

loom ahead,

and for a moment

you become speared

by the thrill of fear

as huge floes of breaking ice

smash into each other.


As you consider

that smashing, grinding world

and think of turning back,

it begins to rain gently

and your calm returns;

every sense of fear leaves

as you become one

with water, ice and grey rocks

looming through low clouds.


With a thrust of the paddle,

you enter the whirling dance

and smoothly slide

upon a turning floe:

safe for the moment

on a floating island of ice!

What more would you want?


For life is truly lived

but a moment at a time:

you can possess no more!

Never fear what lies ahead

and you will walk unscathed

through the open door

and find yourself home...again!

So Much To Ask?


I'll be fifty, come October:

is it so much to ask

for a little more time

out of clothes in the sun?

On my favourite river

in canoe or kayak,

paddling floating, spinning, or

swimming along the shore;

sometimes even with a friend?

Will it wear out the sun

to tan me all over?

Will my naked body crush the sand

lying there dreaming or

watching white gulls against blue sky?

Should I feel guilty

when I just want to be

quietly, silently wondering;

walking lightly upon the earth,

leaving but a footprint or two

in a muddy bank?

The beavers don't care,

so why should your God,

your so-called laws,

or misbegotten morality?

Please just leave me be!

The After Life


Seems to me a good idea to think of the future;

not what I'll do come retirement,

but that great and inevitable future:

the afterlife, as it is often called.


If life has taught me anything at all

it would be “as below, so above”.

A perfect world cannot exist anywhere

until such time I create it myself!


How does one think about an after life?

There are guidelines on how to enter heaven,

but what if heaven is not the chosen destination?

What if one thinks beyond that closed concept?


If I want a world where peace reigns,

should I not be creating such a place already?

Would not the same hold true

for all the rest of the good things

I envision having sway in my afterlife?


If I want an afterlife of love and bliss,

let me be love and let me live in bliss today.

If I want an afterlife of justice and compassion,

let me practice justice and be compassionate...

everyday I have left to live.


Wakening


There is a Dawn

to awaken a Day

and set the soul free

to venture forth

alone

experiencing life

in ways thought

impossible.


There is a Sunset,

a separation

for greater coming together:

Spirit and Flesh

Awaken within a Sleep

...and

a new journey

ensues.


There is a non-place

between

the me you see

and the shadow you see:

the inter-dimensional

“I”

‘god’

of a new millennium.


Who Are The Dead?


Skeleton parks

of graveyards

and war memorials

make no bones about it:

they are about the dead.


But the city, now,

is another story,

another show.

Here, people hustle and rush

to and fro, doing this,

un-doing that.


But who are the dead?

Those who lie quietly underground;

whose names are etched in brass?

Or those who run about

mindlessly making more

of what is already too much?


Those who punch in

too early for death;

too late for life;

who live in twisted shadows

of flickering fluorescence

and shrill neon?


Who run through smog

chased by a million

headlights -

crying:

"Out of my way!

I have an appointment

at the clusterfuck."?


Will That Be Dust Or Ashes?

              

Some live on and long

past the expiry date

on the birth certificate

brandishing a valid

credit card number and

some die young

some not so

some in notoriety

some in fame

some still popular

and some, oh well

that should read

and for most, oh well

not much of anything

young or old

the poor rich

and the rich poor

in faded jeans and business suits

exchanging places

in trading places

and they unseeing

walk the same sidewalks

drive the same freeways

frequent the same attractions

and death, like a mousetrap

snaps shut

on the fat and skinny

the cute and ugly

the smart and dumb

the white and (the

politically correct) non

will that be dust or ashes

the undertaker asks

his death silent

twenty-sixth

seriously reposed overtaker

eight hundred and twenty-third

lopsided grinning loser

that's all she wrote.




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