Endpoem

by Colin Oliver


Original Language English

Given to God,
     the worn sandals of thought
     left at a distant threshold,
one's care is for Him alone
that His care may be for all.

Before Him, in His mystery,
the unclenching
of the fists of knowing --
     the unhanding of all things to Him,
     being in oneself nothing
     and no-one,
     the fool with open palms --
before Him, that one
might happily contain Him.

Being empty and light,
one is God, His all and His love,
held within the light --
     and one sinks as the light
     to God, through God and,
     for His sake, beyond God.

One is
a pebble turned between God's fingers
to be tossed
into the pool of His everlasting clearness
     that His hand might be free.

-- from Stepping Into Brilliant Air, by Colin Oliver

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Commentary by Ivan M. Granger

Oh, I really like the images of this poem.

Given to God,
     the worn sandals of thought
     left at a distant threshold...


This evokes the idea of removing one's sandals when entering sacred ground, as Moses is instructed to do when he encounters the burning bush.

When you think about it, sandals are a perfect representative for thoughts. Sandals are a buffer to protect our feet from rough terrain and sharp objects, but they also become a barrier preventing direct contact with the living soil. So too do thoughts act as a buffer in our perception, softening our encounters with reality but also limiting that direct contact. To touch sacred reality directly, we must remove the barriers of both sandals and the busy mind.

Before Him, in His mystery,
the unclenching
of the fists of knowing --
     the unhanding of all things to Him,
     being in oneself nothing
     and no-one,
     the fool with open palms --
before Him, that one
might happily contain Him.


Great phrase: "the unclenching of the fists of knowing." And also "the unhanding of all things to Him."

Several beautifully turned phrases here to remind us to let go in order to receive. When we let go of "all things," we not only release our attachments to things, but we drop our notions of "thingness." The goal is to stop artificially separating reality into a collection of unrelated objects and, instead, as a fool upon first waking, we recognize the "thingless" unity everywhere. And in that unity we perceive the presence of the Divine.

Being empty and light,
one is God...


Oh, I like that too. (Momentary pause while I go back and reread some of these lines once again... OK, I'm back.)

One is
a pebble turned between God's fingers
to be tossed
into the pool of His everlasting clearness
     that His hand might be free.


Mm. (That did it. I'm gone again.)



Recommended Books: Colin Oliver

Stepping Into Brilliant Air Nothing But This Moment





Endpoem