Poems 2022-23

The Gift (Soularise 2022)

They came by car, bus, train, and plane from near and far away.

They came seeking, hungry, hurting, and despairing

Some full of hope, some feeling hopeless

They had great expectations and small expectations, and some had no expectations at all

In fact, some came trembling with fear, so that they could not even begin to hope

Lest they be disappointed again, one more time

Some walked boldly with purpose, others softly and quietly not daring even to stir up a breeze.

They pounded drums and howled at the moon

They shook hands, gave hugs, shared big smiles and warm greetings with old friends and new faces

Some were wide open, others shut down, some very eager, others very cautious

With great courage they opened their eyes and ears and hearts and minds

They paused and listened, thought for a while, and pondered what they heard

The veil became thin and the icy walls around their hearts began to melt

As the white-hot breath of the spirit blew into their minds and bodies

They shook with excitement and fear, some dazed and confused, others falling yet soaring on the winds

God spoke truth into their souls and rubbed healing balm on their wounds

Mending broken hearts and lives and relationships

For one moment time stood still, there was no regret about the past, no anxiety about the future

They were all fully Present

The love and grace and mercy of the almighty flooded their entire beings

God’s voice could be heard by one and all

“You are my beloved, you are worthy, You are the Gift

“You are my gift to all of creation”

“You are my gift to your family and friends and all those you meet along your journey

Trust my voice and never forget

Wait, what, why, me?

Yes, you my child, you my child, you my child

Their eyes filled with tears as the words they had been longing to hear

The words I had been longing to hear, all of my life, finally

These precious words penetrated deep into my soul

A bright light chased away all the darkness and fear and doubt and shame

There was no longer any fog or confusion or distraction, only great clarity of thought and mind

I had heard these words before, quietly, faintly, softly, like a thought or a whisper

But now there was no denying their source or their message

Now these words embraced me and squeezed me and held me tightly and would not let go

Finally, finally, I knew for sure

That God had chosen me, yes, even me

And I could rest, I could rest

Ahh! So sweet! Such peace!

I am blessed!

By John Hamlett

Oh my soul
Awaken a new day is dawning

Break through
The fear, the doubt
The numbness

Be quiet
Lean in

Give me ears to hear
Great Spirit
Holy one

True Self
Divine nature

I choose you
Fill my heart
True identity

Grant me true love
Grant me wisdom
Grant me grace

For myself
And others
Holy unity

I surrender
My heart
My will

Make me
A vessel
Of Your Love

By John Hamlett 5/31/23

The Winter’s Day Reflection

Once mighty trees have fallen, and they decay

The small trees have lost their leaves and now stand naked

The dead leaves cover the brown earth

The forest is awash with multiple shades of gray, brown, white and green

All is still

Really everything that once stands tall, will fall

Every brilliant flash of green will fade to brown and gray

You will spring forth with new life and you will die

A thousand times

Can you embrace the living and the dying?

By John Hamlett

The Place I Want to Get Back to

As I contemplate the place I want to get back to

I pause and reflect on one choice after another

That mostly turned into one mistake after another

Or at least a missed opportunity

I think, why would want to go back to a place of naïve innocence and ignorance

Why would I want to experience regret, one more time

The place I want to get to

Is a place I have never been

Or maybe I was once there, but maybe not

Innocence is such a sweet place to visit

But you can’t live there, or you will surely die

There is no place I want to get back to

I want to be in the place where I am right now

Living in the present moment, I think

Is how I live in Divine Presence

Living in the present is a gift to be embraced

A place where I can see endless opportunities

By John Hamlett

An Ode to Mary Oliver

Be still my soul and be steadfast

Let the waves of chaos flow over you and around you and through you

Be still my soul for you are forever

Be not afraid for you are never alone

Seasons come and seasons go

New life is birthed, and it brilliantly shines forth

As time passes, it slowly steadily fades

Only to die and then be born a new

Be still my soul and know peace

By John Hamlett

How I Have Refused to Live

I have refused to live in a world without meaning

A world without love and peace and mercy and hope

And despite all my failings

I have refused to live a life unexamined

And although I have done my best, most of my life, to avoid pain and suffering

The price for examining my life

The price for conscious awareness

Is embracing the pain I desperately seek to escape

The Pain hurts like hell but I’m tired of living in a semi-conscious state

I’m tired of hurting the people I love the most

I’m tired of allowing fear to paralyze me

I refuse to live a life that is easy, although that’s what I often seek

It is only in your Presence that I can live this life oh Lord

Grant me strength and courage to withstand all that I must face

By John Hamlett

What Am I Stepping Away from to Pause and Reflect

I am happy to step away from my busy life

Happy to step away from one responsibility after another

Happy to let go of anger and fear and frustration and high anxiety

Happy to let go of big decisions about the future

Trying to let go of bitterness and resentment

Wanting to let go of strained relationships

Wanting to let go of toxic people

Happy to let go of financial worries

Wanting to let go of heaviness and conflict

Desperately wanting to let go of conflict all around me

Let go of making people happy

Let go of worry, so much worry

By John Hamlett

The Shape of Joy

Joy begins with a smile

Because someone or some thing has touched your heart

And in that moment

Darkness flees, fear flees, shame flees, and doubt flees

You have found connection with your True Self and with your Creator

And likely but not always, another human being

Just rest in it

By John Hamlett