Rhythms and Rituals-Song/Poem-1


The colors of evening, now color the sky
Signal of passage to night
and the hills in the distance, silhouette and fire,
sundown’s now radiance of light –

CHORUS: Rhythms and rituals, now, life all around
Sharing our lives with the Earth –

The colors of the city, now, light up the night,
viewing from mountain on high,
The buildings, the people, their daytime jobs done
Merge in the stillness and flow into One –

Passage of time/ now/ feelings inside
Forever flowing within,
Expansion of ecstasy/ now/ moments in time
Great Mystery in all our lives –

We’re coming together, now, evening’s embrace
sharing our feelings, our day –
It’s a game – it’s a dance – it’s a sharing of time –
it’s a rhyming, a ritual, and it’s yours and it’s mine

CHORUS: These rhythms and rituals, now, all in our lives,
Sharing our life with each other –

Time is now bending, journey of dream
Voyage to distance of stars
Wonder of universe – Earth rising up,
brightens the view from afar

  Does the poem speak to you?  What images or words stand out in this poem for you?


The Resonance of Trees-Poem

Camp Fire Reflection

{Remembering my Inner Shaman} –

 The resonance of trees
sensual feeling of the breeze
a time frame slower than
my senses can perceive

 There’s this unseen hum, now
near my inner ear
something I can hardly sense,
it seems so distinct and clear

 All around these miracles
beyond the limits of my senses
as I try to know the sense of it
within my own so small lens –

 but this resonance of trees today
inviting me to share,
to take my animated presence
where the trees cannot dare

 To feel within this resonance
1,000 images passing me by

 So, I set the metronome
so very very low.
this resonance and
so slow drum beat,
so much lower
than I know

 Is it real?
Ask the trees
if this is so –

 This resonance of trees
as I walk now with the breeze
in this time frame slower than
my senses can perceive

What is it you like about this poem?

Snapshots of the Heart

“Daddy.” I’m not so sure when I started saying that word or loving that being who was my dad. His sojourn with me was not the length of a novel or even a short story – more like a 5 stanza poem. He died before I started school at 5. It was not a tragic death, but he went through the veil before I really got to know him. Maybe this relationship with him inspired a love of mystery of poetry, song, and writing within me. I look back wistfully but thankful for the time he touched my life, we had happy moments, all too few.

I was barely able to read my new Golden Books when dad was informed by our family doctor that he had colon cancer. The conversations and experiences we had are more colored with emotions rather than articulate conversations that I can remember, so, my memories of our time together are more like snapshots. I can only mentally reconstruct our few conversations, especially those in the last few months of his life. Are these conversations real or not? I can only say they are stored in my heart where they are clear. The language of my heart being that of feeling and emotion, I believe.

There are several of these snapshots I can see clearly with the lens of my heart, in the silence, in this space between the lines. There is this one picture of him standing in front of the china cabinet in the dining room telling me something about when I would be grown up. It didn’t make sense at all to me, but I just took it in and didn’t raise any questions. I guessed somehow he was just expressing love, and anyways adults did a lot of things difficult to understand and made things I thought silly a little too serious. In addition to being my dad he was also an adult, so I didn’t question. There is another snapshot I recall of him in the hospital bed at Deaconess Hospital in Detroit. He is in a good mood, so I’m feeling hopeful – He will be back home soon. Everything will be okay again. I now see that he was good at covering up his deeper feelings and not expressing them. In that snapshot, he pointed to the dresser top drawer that was to my right, and said, “There’s a present in there for you.” It was a Hershey Bar.

Those are a couple of snapshots and a song from my heart that I share. They have great feeling and meaning to me.

The Song in My Heart

Here is the song in my heart
Here is the song in my soul
Here is a song that can heal
rhap-so-dy now –
– Richard MacKay

Crafting My Blog

Here, I want to explicate what I hope to express and craft with my blog.  This is my blog credo and roadmap of sorts, and I will see how it unfolds and evolves, as I saw my poetry book evolve with my creative work.  At this point in time, this is a definitive essay on crafting my blog.

In my poetry, I have wanted to express the oneness I feel in my life.  Simply put, I suppose I would say the articulating of my relationship in life to Spirit, Ultimate Reality, the Universe, or God.  I stated this in my poetry book: “[I am inspired by] the spirit of oneness in my experience. The connection between different facets of my experience such as visual colors, harmonies, nature, and language. Spirituality is sensing my world as both evident and mysterious and putting that into my poetry.”

I recall a TV program called The Naked City – There was a story about a person in one episode and the narrator talked about this person: who lived in a neighborhood in New York City. In the story that was told, this person never ventured out of his neighborhood, ever.”  He lived in New York City and yet he only knew a very small part in this huge multifaceted place called New York City.  I don’t want my blog to be like this, I want to venture out courageously into my life experience, into my creativity.  I want to venture into both charted and personally uncharted waters.

I want this blog to be inclusive of my creative pursuits.  A blog is for me about not only tangible stories but also exploring some more intangible areas.  It may include stories about me, I don’t know, but it will include much more.  What is this “much more”?  I can’t specifically define it – the “much more” is my imagination, my poetry, and other creative endeavors, including song composing, art, photos and perhaps more.  These are my creative contributions, hopefully to give insight and uplift other creative people.

The blog is also like life itself a creative work on its own – “a work in progress”.  Additionally perhaps, I’d like to explore some analysis of my journey of writing, composing, drawing, or painting something.  What in my life sparked that image or idea?   How did I create it then?  What do I have on my expressive palette to create my blog posts?  I’d like to suggest the analogy that a life, my life, is little like a book, it has a, a prologue, a beginning, middle, and a completion or epilogue.  There are chapters, adventures, and phases along the way in any particular life, showing growth, digression, or a little of both; a life lived is full of stories, poems, music, pictures about that journey, that is what I believe.

So, for me I want this blog to elucidate the facets of my creative muse, my creative spirit, exploring and expressing for myself and others.  It has to do with images and ideas of reality and imagination, putting together a more comprehensive outlook for myself, illuminating my intimacy with life itself.  Such is my muse’s credo and creative roadmap at this point in time.

The Death of My Father

Someone posed the question to me the other day, “Who has influenced your life the most?” I thought about it for a moment and then unequivocally answered, “My father.” My answer surprised me since I think many people have influenced my life. It may seem like a pretty standard answer to the question for most people. Here’s the caveat or surprise, though: my dad was only in my life for a very short 4 ½ years, not long.

I realized that my dad, James Evan MacKay profoundly influenced my life. I have never expressed this profound connection to myself or to anyone else. At this time in my life, however, I realize his importance in my life’s direction. I realize he’s been there for me, not in a material sense, but I guess in a spirit sense, in a heartful sense. He’s always been in my heart. I have not talked to him, though I know that it’s a visual exercise one can do with close friends or family members who have made their transition. I’ve never been one to go to séances or to talk to departed spirits, and I don’t have a strong belief in that.

What I know about my experience with my dad in this life is that it occurred before I had a great faculty with language or life as I know it now. It occurred in the time of my life where I was developing emotionally. It was before I learned to read and write or add and subtract or in effect have the mental and physical skills of an adolescent and an adult. I have a few memories and pictures of him while he was with me. He had at least one conversation where I recall being there physically in my body, but I didn’t grasp, I think, that he was trying to tell me that he was going to die. I didn’t know what dying was. He talked to me about being an adult, I believe. It didn’t really make too much sense, and I don’t remember how I felt; only confused.

I would say the event of his dying and death was not a consciously traumatic experience, but one that my family carefully crafted me through, avoiding the emotionality of it. In other words, his suffering from cancer was for the most part hidden from me. There was no grief or crying for me; there was only, after his death, enjoying a trip up to my aunt’s in Sudbury, Ontario, and getting ready to start school, shortly. Carefully planned distractions to ease me through until school started. Unfortunately, for me a pretty blank, perhaps emotionally empty time, not that I felt like I was suffering. Perhaps, I could say in retrospect, I just didn’t feel anything deeply too much. Perhaps there was sadness at the loss of my great friend and prince, but I didn’t have time to dwell on it.

So, in essence, this experience put me face to face with the ineffableness of life. – That’s why I say that this relationship with my dad was a profound one. Life is a mystery. I have learned to journey in this mystery, this uncertainty. There is always the evident, the familiar, but also there is the mystery; both have been familiar realities with which I’ve lived. There is for each of us our life’s purpose and journey of each day, and there is also death and completion at journey’s end. I’ve learned and practiced loving each new step on this journey, and I’ve tried to live as fully as possible and to the best of my ability. I feel I have been loved and guided by certain others and by this Mystery, however you name it. I am grateful for it all. My fondest wish is to portray, practice, and express this love, this spirit of the Mystery for others.

Inspiration of the Heart-Poem

Follow Your Heart

Follow your Heart
Where is it leading you?
Step to its rhythm,
harmony, and chords–

Dance to the time
no matter what judgments
from within, from without
Dance inspiration
Follow your Heart –

Dance in the Oneness
from within, from without
Dance in the spirit
where there’s never a doubt –

Let your Heart be your school
Let your Heart be your tool
Join the dance, now, courageously,
and follow your Heart –

The Stranger in the Doorway-Poem

The Stranger in the Doorway

I come into the lodge
I’m startled,
seeing the reflection
in one of the glass panes
of the front door

This stranger coming toward me,
looking at me,
looking like me –

Who are you?

Well, I know right away.
This is my reflection,
a part of me,
like a shadow
that seeks my attention,
that wants expression,
that wants exploration –
like a stranger
mirrored in this doorway –

“Each of us has some part of our personality that is hidden from us. Parents and teachers in general, urge us to develop the light side of the personality – move into well-lit subjects such as mathematics and geometry – and to become successful. The dark part becomes starved.”

“…the shadow is simply a ‘mythological’ name for all that is within me of which I cannot directly know.”

Robert Bly -A Little Book On The Human Shadow