We stood around the fire
strangers to ourselves,
souls far from home,
on this far-flung and forlorn
fold of the vast wasteland of form,
in some kind of interdimensional waystation,
someone’s back yard.
We were all the main characters in separate stories,
long and wild ones, but
somehow, we all ended up in that scene together,
wondering if destiny had a purpose,
all awestruck and quiet
around the fire
I strummed soft smoky bittersweet notes,
steady, simple, continuous,
a blanket of consolation
that wrapped us each in our separateness
and kinda snuggled us all together.
Notions flared up occasionally,
wispy and wistful
or sparking and popping out of the fire ring.
“How did I get here?”
“I wonder what ever happened to so and so.”
“What could I have done differently?”
“How am I gonna get out of this place?”
“My soul isn’t from here,
but it can’t remember where home is.”
“I wish the child-me could know how loved he was,
but he never really knew and now he’s dead,
and buried somewhere
But maybe he can hear me
tell him now;
I see his ghost playing and running around in my dreams some nights.”
“Dreams make perfect sense.
Why is being awake such a mindfuck?”
Now and then
we looked into each other’s eyes for a moment,
maybe a little more,
with sad smiles and
soul’s light glowing through
those sweet heartache eyes
of warm moist clay,
cheek bones and brow worn down
to an earthy grace
of surrender and determination.
Yeah, now and then
we look into each other’s eyes for a moment,
but mostly we all stare into the fire,
Is it because behind the flickering
flames of this life,
a constant light and warmth
reminds us of some kind of eternal home,
a place to rest in belonging?
Or do we stare into the fire
so we can put our backs
the cold dark space surrounding us,
stretching beyond the beyond,
whispering to us
reminding us that sooner or later
we must return,
whenever our spirits decide they’re finally done with this samsara.
Did we stay too many times in this world
clinging to some kind of self?
Are we the abandoned orphans
or are we the runaways?
Nobody can remember.
But I know that whether we live infinite lifetimes
or die a final death,
not one of us will make it out of here.