Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Right Place for Love

By Mary Dowd (the genius sometimes moonlighting as my mother)

I have a dirty little secret
I know it’s just not said,
or thought,
or even felt,
in the dharma circles
I move in,
but I have to confess
I’m not looking for enlightenment

Oh sure,
I’d like to turn off my radio–head,
stop endlessly arranging my life
and everyone else’s,
drop my ego off a cliff
and watch it swim away
with all the other sharks

then I could cruise through life
with my eyes open,
radiating wisdom, serenity,
feeling the earth beneath my feet,
the sky around my ears

I do meditate every day,
well, almost every day,
and I’m gaining
the outward appearance
of inner peace,
I hardly ever argue with my spouse any more,
well, out loud, that is

I took Boddhisattva vows,
I like helping other people,
it’s my job,
I do it,
very rewarding and all that

But, you know,
I really like the bit
about coming back
lifetime after lifetime,

I’d just like to skip
the part where I see clearly
how everything is always changing
and dying right before my eyes

Because ignorance has its uses
its a coping mechanism,
survival skill really,
how would you ever get out of bed
eat, drink, procreate,
do anything
if you always knew
you were always dying

As for aggression,
well, there are times
when you just have to Say NO
NO lucky charms for breakfast
NO piercing your tongue
NO red contact lenses
NO selling marijuana from your bedroom

And tell me, please,
what’s so great about non-attachment?
Isn’t the best part of this wandering in cyclic existence
the attachment part,
the part where you’re hopelessly
helplessly in love
with whomever, whatever
your cat, your gerbils,
your lover, your babies,
Brad, Angelina,
Bright Eyes
marshmallow fluff?

I mean, isn’t there a catch-22,
a little fly in the non–attachment ointment?
How do you ever learn to feel compassion
without suffering loss?
and how is loss suffering
if you’re not attached to anything?

So when we dedicate the merit
I always add my own little codicil
nothing too heretical really,
I just add from the ocean of samsara
and nirvana may I free all beings

Because really,
who wants to sit around in bliss all day
when you could be right here
in this realm,
this realm of infinite desire,
on this perfectly imperfect planet
loving and pining,
weeping and whining,
scheming and dreaming

earth’s the right place for love
I don’t know where it’s likely to go better


Blogger Carrie said...

incidentally, my new last name is "Love." we got married and chose it for obvious reasons. tried you at a very old email address, but here might be better luck. did you ever put my story in that zine those years ago? if u did, can u send me the info (zine name and date). if not, then just send me how you are doing, cuz i'd love to know. check me out and meet my wife if you ever get to this longitude. Love Carrie Leilam Love (neé Leiser-Williams).

2:18 PM  
Blogger Nicco said...

I really like this,... I think between some of the moments you shared with me last year, supported me... it really does give it a whole new life and meaning for me... That your mother wrote it... all plays a part. Thank your mom from me, for writing it.

12:20 PM  

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