Filled With Love

Filled With Love

Fear and love, they say,
are at the basis of all
human endeavors
and in my experience
this is quite true.

If you fear for your children
you do so only because
you love them.
If you fear for your safety
it is only because you love
the life that flows in your veins.
We only fear the loss of things
that we first love.
Good to know that love
always precedes fear
and so will
forever be stronger.

When all the grains of sand
have slipped
through your hands
and you’re left
only with your breath
and a whole lot of nothing,
you’ll find
all of that nothing
is full of love.

Dewey Dirks

Mystic

Mystic

Normally we all believe
it is us who experience life,
and we each build
well lived lives
by accumulating scores
of memorable moments.
So, when you experience life
in some special way, you say,
“For me, it’s been
a memorable moment.”

But every once in great awhile,
you have an experience
where it seems that Nature herself
takes time out of her busy, busy day
to pay attention just to you.
When life experiences you in this way
it becomes something mystical.

When comes the day you realize
Nature is always
experiencing you in this way
just as you are experiencing her.
When comes the day
you find that both you and the world
are forever as young lovers,
meeting in a vast, vast sea
of happenstance and coincidence,
falling in love just now,
discovering each other,
over and over again, every day,
then you’re a mystic.

Dewey Dirks

Be Still

Be Still

Years ago,
when I was a teenager,
my dad would sit
at the kitchen table
and think for hours on end
as he slowly smoked cigarettes
and drank black, hot coffee.
At the time I couldn’t
figure out what
the point of it was.
I’d ask him,
“Dad, why don’t you get up
and do something?”
He always told me
the same thing.
He’d look at me, smile,and say,
“I’m already doing something.”

It wasn’t until years later
that I figured out he was right.
Sitting and thinking
is a beginning,
middle, and end all by itself.
It’s one of the
more important things
we all need to do
and I’d be willing to bet
it’s something that most of us
have forgotten,
or never learned how to do.

Our culture raises us
from embryos to stay busy
and most people are enculturated
so heavily that they will do
practically anything
to avoid having to sit and think.
On the rare occasion they do
sit and just think,
it’s only when they have
some sort of crisis in their lives
and feel the need
to sort things out.

Get acquainted with yourself.
Teach yourself to be still.
If you do, I’ll bet you’ll find
that you’re a pretty enjoyable
person to hang out with.
Start by having
a conversation with yourself
when you are all alone.
For an hour or two,
sit somewhere comfortable
with a drink and think about
anything you’d like.

Put down your phone.
Don’t text your friends.
Don’t sit at the computer.
Don’t watch
the wide screen television.
Ask yourself a few questions
about things big and small.
See what sort of answers
you bring to the table.
Great things always begin
by being still.
Likewise, all your
journeys inward start
by being still, my friend.

My dad was a brilliant man
and a natural born engineer—
Among the best I’ve ever come
across or even heard of
and all the things he made
in life began by sitting
at the kitchen table thinking.
And me? Well, just about
everything I ever write
begins by being still for awhile.

Dewey Dirks

Six Words

Six Words

Although there are
many good words
and many words
that can heal
there are six words
that I’m especially happy
to know in life.
Six words
that, if lived by well,
connect us together
and can heal us all.

First is the Chinese word, ‘Tao.’
It means a great deal
when you understand it.
Imagine everything that exists,
both alive and inanimate.
Think of everything all this does.
Imagine the reasons why everything
that exists do all that they do.
All of that, all together, all at once
is what Tao is.
Think of everything anything ever does
as notes in a grand song
that an orchestra is playing.
Tao is the orchestra and the song
all together, all at once.
Tao is the idea that the entire Universe
is one single system-in-action.
It means that we each and all
are separate things
that together make One thing.
It is what gives all existence
pattern and order
and it is the music
to which in life we all dance.
Tao is all of us in an orchestra
playing a grand symphony
while dancing along.
Good to know
that Tao doesn’t dictate actions
but allows all the different
kinds of music everyone wants to play.
Tao is all that we understand
and all that dwells
beyond our understanding.
It is the fly on the table,
your son texting his friends,
your Aunt Harriet sewing a scarf,
Elephants on the savannah,
and all the fish in the sea.
Tao is all of us dancing
to a melody never set to paper.
Tao is all the things we do in life.
Tao is you and me.

Next is the Hindi word ‘Namaste.’
It means ‘I honor and see
the place in you where
dwells love and the divine,
and I honor that same place in me,
thereby together we are One.’
I like this word very much
because if you say it
with your heart and soul
it reminds you that
we all are brothers and sisters—
Children of the same Mother Nature.
Everything that lives
are equals by virtue
of the sparks of life
within us all.

Next is a phrase
spoken by the Lakota people
of North America.
‘Mitakuye oyasin’ means
‘All my relations’ and
calls to mind not just
your human brothers and sisters
but your relations to
everything that exists
in the entire Universe.
It means that all Nature
is interconnected
and we each are small parts
of something vast and magical.
Something that is wonderful
and full of mystery.

Next are two more words
from the Chinese language.
Yin and Yang call to mind
not the good and the bad,
but that which is passive
and that which is active in life.
Yin is passive and supple
like liquid water.
Yang is active and assertive
like the same water in the form
of a thunder storm.
Yin Yang means that all the world
evolves in cycles, the active
first rising then giving way
to the passive only to rise
and give way again and again.
Yin and Yang are not opposites.
Like two sides of a great mountain
one side quiet in the shade,
the other shined upon
by the bright sun,
each side is complementary
to the other and within in each
is the seed of its counterpart.
Neither one is better than the other
and different parts of the world
gravitate naturally to one or the other.
Though both appear in all the world
in equal proportion, it is said
that Nature favors the Yin.
Yin and Yang remind us all
that the sum of our lives
is not a battle
in the middle of fighting
but a continuous process
that is constantly evolving.

Different words are favored
by different people.
These words are the ones
that mean the most to me.
I favor them, or perhaps,
they favor me.
Six words gathered
from the cultures of Humanity.
Six words to connect us each.
Six words to bind
all life together as One.
Six words to guide and nurture.
Six words to live
and love and learn.

Dewey Dirks

The Search

The Search

We each search the world outside
looking for meaning and truths.
Like flowers calling bees
to dance life’s dance
meaning and truth look
for us was as well.
The secret is that
before we can recognize
any meaning and truths
in the world around us,
we first must discover
them in ourselves.
Your search starts the day
you begin to look inside.
All the wandering
you do before then
is just practice.
Wonders and great mystery
are waiting my friend
Why not begin
your journeys today?
You’ll be surprised
at what you see
when you come out
on the other side.

Dewey Dirks

Wondering and Wandering

Wondering and Wandering

It is good to go through life
wondering and wandering
about everything from God
to what heights and depths
the human spirit can go
to what animals might be thinking
as they go through their day.
Go though life questioning
what none of us know
and what you think
you already know.
Revisit those questions
again and again.
Discover the views of others.
Become a collector
of points of view.
Learn to recognize the mystery
in everything
that surrounds us all.
In every question
you find yourself asking
is the eternal opportunity
to learn
and to unlearn.

Dewey Dirks