poem: new years eve post-apocalyptic blues and authentic new beginnings

preface: Beloveds, when I write a poem
like this one, of social criticism, hard truths,
suffering, difficult emotions, I am concerned
many will just pass it by with no thought, as a
downer. Who wants to read that stuff? My
hope is that such poems might challenge
our thinking, might unite us in shared
experience, might shake us awake, might spark
new insights  into the challenges we all face
together in authentic communities of belonging.
And a reminder, the redemption comes at the end so
please read it all the way through. Peace upon
peace, dear ones, for a better year we have earned.

poem: new years eve post-apocalyptic blues
and authentic new beginnings
on the eve of  the new year 2021
wondering if the apocalypse has
already happened and we are
just to numb to notice

this talk about the lessons
we can learn from the pandemic
and its’ new normal and how
we will be the better for it

to be a victim of the machine
and its’ broken systems
in which we are but a cog
is maddening and a tragedy

let us count the ways:
a terrorist bombing in Nashville
which could have been prevented
leading to a communications blackout
due to corporate greed and inaction;
a pandemic due to a reality show
president so incompetent he broke the
public health system;
a broken medical system swamped by
viral death;
alt-right anarchist riots sowing discord
and chaos across the nation;
police killing blacks and treating
black protestors like criminals;
and the count goes on

please, no more platitudes
no more stiff upper lip
no more too numb to notice
no more waiting for the  new normal

let us be witnesses
speaking our truth to power,
authentically belonging together
taking action, being the change
for a better world, you are the
only one who can change you
and acting together, we the world

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
New Years Eve 2020

Thoreau quote image made by Herb Stone


Reflection: the (w)holly name of the Beloved

Reflection: the (w)holly name of the Beloved

Christmastide 2020

When we personally face the Universal Cosmic Christ

at the nativity and at the foot of the cross, we are faced with two authentic choices: surrender or resist.

Are we seeing the embodiment of Supreme Love or a threat to our worldly way of life?

To whom or what are we loyal?

To whom or what do we surrender?

The powerful and the rich are filled with fear and trembling at the nativity and the cross, and the least of us sing Hallelujah!

There is no serving two masters, a life is either all spiritual or not spiritual at all. Our life is shaped by the end for which we live.

Note: The Universal Cosmic Christ, by whatever name and tradition, is the embodiment of radical grace and radical love among us and to which we are born, long for, suffer, are resurrected, and live everlasting. Although I use Christian symbolism here, many religious, spiritual, and native traditions embody these truths. And in the mystical traditions, this relationship between the lover and their Beloved is often portrayed as the passionate love between two lovers. The attached music video ‘Surrender’ by Natalie Taylor is a lovely example of this mystical lover/Beloved passion and surrender.
My reflection above reflects the teachings and writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Thomas Merton, and Richard Rohr who have heavily influenced my spiritual journey as mentor’s.
Love, Grace, Surrender,
Love, Grace, Surrender,

Love, Grace, Surrender….

click on music video link below
https://herbstonejr.com/reflection-the-wholly-name-of-the-beloved/29/Test https://herbstonejr.com/quote-the-government-was-always-upon-the-shoulder-of-jesus/28/Test

poem: cosmic visions of new year, new way, new being

poem: cosmic visions of new year,
new way, new being

one door open, another closes
entering liminal space with
propitious visions of new life

there will not be any going back
to some unwholesome norm
of fascism, injustice, and pandemic

this systemic toxicity neutralized
as we move forward, go deeper,
open wider in that which lies ahead

the inclusive democracy of diversity
the justice of a moral universe
the holistic health of organicity

personally integrating we offer
Self in unselfish acts
of public good expecting no reward

Beloveds, auspicious Cosmic beings,
liberated and creating and
seeing it through

for behold the old things pass away
and all things will be made new
the old self put off and the new Self put on

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
December 27, 2020

art ‘Cosmic Artist’ by Alex Grey

(reader’s note: the last stanza reflects
the prophecy of  Isaiah and the apostle Paul
in his epistle to the early church in Corinth.)




https://herbstonejr.com/poem-cosmic-visions-of-new-year-new-way-new-being/27/Test https://herbstonejr.com/quote-stories-greatly-matter/26/Test

poem: blue Christmas tears

💓 For you Beloveds this Christmas Eve with All Our Love 💓

poem: blue Christmas tears

Christmas is not a one size fits all
it is multicultural and reflects many traditions
it is not all Merry Christmas
and ‘hail fellow well met’
we are not mid-nineteenth century Victorians

or all fans of secular Santa

nor do we all cherish the ‘true meaning’
of tenderness for the baby Jesus
and sentimentality for the manger scene
in the children’s play,
charities for the poor,
and candle light and caroling services

on these longest nights of winter
there are those for who ‘Merry Christmas’ is frivolity
and who no matter how gay or true the festivities,
they will experience grief, suffering, brokenness, loneliness,
these blue feelings and pains only finding some relief

in a return to ordinary time

Beloveds, let us see and hear one another
keeping one another in our hearts and prayers
bearing one another up always through grace and love
sharing our deepest truth together, wiping tears,
walking each other home with hope and peace,
certainly the most true meaning of all

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
Christmas Eve 2020

photo by Herb Stone
Blue Winter Night in Snow

(reader’s note: I searched for a poem, a quote, a song
about blue Christmas and found nothing satisfactory,
so I wrote this poem in an effort to express some
conversations I have had with Beloveds
over the last few days concerning their struggles
at this time of the year. And especially this year
which has left us scarred and seperated from political
division, injustice, and the pandemic. Many can not be
with family due to estrangement, or covid restrictions,
or separation, religious services are canceled, many
without jobs and income. Yet we always have each other
in our shared suffering and deepest needs. Let us always
see one another, hear one another, reach out to one another
in mutual grace and love which is after all the highest
meaning of all in the sharing of Universal Cosmic Christ
Consciousness by whatever name we know it.)

https://herbstonejr.com/poem-blue-christmas-tears/24/Test https://herbstonejr.com/quote-we-are-all-children-of-the-great-universe-and-its-big-picture/23/Test https://herbstonejr.com/quote-creativity-is-largely-the-daring/23/Test

Reflection: anticipating a new year, new way, new me, new creativity, new mutuality

Reflection: anticipating a new year, new way, new me, new creativity, new mutuality

Here it sits in front of me on the dinning room table: some of my writing over the past couple of years. My composition books filled with writing and my poetry blog printed out on separate pages. I always write in long hand and then do the final composition on the computer before posting them on my blog and social media. You know I never thought I would share my writing so widely and have a blog.

Although, as some of you know, I have written all my life since childhood, only fairly recently, have I begun to see it as a vocation, i.e., a calling, rather than a personal pastime. And this thought, ‘perhaps it will serve me well in my dotage’.

Truthfully, I am rather wary to speak of writing so directly and concretely as so much of the creative process is so wondrously amazing to me coming from the shadows, the soul, and the spirit. And yet, creativity is large part daring as well.

And certainly without the support and encouragement and love of so many of you, my writing would be for naught. Beloveds, my respect and admiration always.

And so I shall go about organizing my writings, seeing what they might say, and what form they might take with these thoughts: where is it headed, what now, and always giving thanks as it is always gift and grace and mutuality to me.

When all is said and done, poetry, for me, is about Self expression and the hoped for deep connectivity with other and the belonging together that might spark from this ‘whereby human beings harness the energies of Divine Love and for the second time in the history of the world, we will have discovered fire.’

(note: the final phrase in the last sentence is a paraphrase of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, the Jesuit priest, mystic, scientist, theologian, philosopher, author, and teacher whose influence on me is telling)

poem: winter equinox 4:01 a.m. northern hemisphere

poem: winter equinox 4:01 a.m.
northern hemisphere

shortest day
longest night
first winter’s day
at our door

cold, wet fog
blanketing all

nothing astir
all in its burrow
save the winter hare
and snowy owl
in stillness

season’s visions
stars in the east
the light of the world
the fire of the spirit
Universal Cosmic Christ

Herb Stone
here&now working poetry
December 21, 2020

image courtesy of Lowell Observatory

(reader’s note: Jupiter and Saturn
will form rare “Christmas Star” on
winter solstice. On December 21, 2020,
Jupiter and Saturn will appear closer
in Earth’s night sky than they have
since 1226 A.D.)