prophets and poets

Gabriel walks the streets,
an Angel of the Lord dressed in the skin of man,
but police are too afraid of his black skin,
or when he appears as a Native American,
speaking loudly at Standing Rock,
holding up a sign at a Black Matters Protest.
Gabriel attends the protests and the meetings,
a man of god with the fiery strength of his,
trying to make a difference in this suffering world,
knowing that all man are created equal
and yet they beg to differ arguing over each other.
Gabriel is a woman protesting for feminism,
here, there, everywhere that Gabriel can speak,
but no one listens to this Angel of God,
shouting at Gabriel, “Not all Men”
and Gabriel screams back, “You have missed the point!”
Gabriel is a Buddhist nun who strives for peace,
wanting to bring humanity compassion and hope,
speaking regularly to the cameras like the Dalai Lama.
All Gabriel wants to do is bring humanity back to the fold,
to knowing that it is one with the cosmos,
but Gabriel’s message is drowned out in the bitter hate
and the anger and the skewing of media,
and humans lie and lie to each other,
breaking each other’s heart as they ignore
the suffering of enviornment, animal, and fellow man.
Gabriel appears as Prophet among the men,
but no one listens, they just turn their ears away
saying, God doesn’t exist and why should they love their enemy
who has tried to oppress them and
didn’t God do the same kind of shit that isn’t progressive?
Just look at the Bible they say
and they spew forth hate for each other,
never wanting to listen or feel.
—  Modern Gabriel
poetry request for anon
ciel knight
Crystal Ball

Red oak fur
Against the golden bark
And an ocean of leaves
Waving
Like glitter of the sea

I know what you see
When you gaze
In that sphere
You see the storm

Turn rustling leaves
Into a tambourine
And pluck the strings
Of the trunks of the trees

I play the keys
In the crystal sea 

The sea
You see

I am the storm
Quake with me

3

الله يرحمه , Kahlil Gibran.  The best-selling poet after Shakespeare and Laozi, Gibran was born in Lebanon to a Maronite family before emigrating to the United States of America in 1895 at the age of 12.  His works infuse the traditions of the Syriac Maronite Church as well as the mysticism of Sufism, and while critical acclaim did not follow The Prophet (26 verses of poetic prose) on its publication in 1923, popular acclaim did, and continues to do so–it has yet to be out of print since its original publication in the United States of America.  Also a gifted artist (he illustrated his own works), Gibran died on this date in 1931 at the age of 48.  Here’s one of his poems worth remembering:

“Pity the Nation” (composed c. 1912, published 1933)

Pity the nation that is full of beliefs and empty of religion.

Pity the nation that wears a cloth it does not weave and eats a bread it does not harvest.

Pity the nation that acclaims the bully as hero, and that deems the glittering conqueror bountiful.

Pity a nation that despises a passion in its dream, yet submits in its awakening.

Pity the nation that raises not its voice save when it walks in a funeral, boasts not except among its ruins, and will rebel not save when its neck is laid between the sword and the block.

Pity the nation whose statesman is a fox, whose philosopher is a juggler, and whose art is the art of patching and mimicking

Pity the nation that welcomes its new ruler with trumpeting, and farewells him with hooting, only to welcome another with trumpeting again.

Pity the nation whose sages are dumb with years and whose strongmen are yet in the cradle.

Pity the nation divided into fragments, each fragment deeming itself a nation.

Stamp details:
Stamp on top:
Issued on: April 10, 1971
From: Beirut, Lebanon
MC #1129

Middle stamps:
Issued on: December 19, 1983
From: Beirut, Lebanon
MC #BL43

Stamps on bottom:
Issued on: April 30, 2008
From: Beirut, Lebanon
MC #BL53

Stars

Shimmering beacons aligning the heavens
lighting the darkness greeting the dawn
flaming flashing fiery frenetic orbs
terribly distant, yet consistent reminders
of the chaotic void from whence we were born 
why then do philosophers, prophets and poets 
love stars, maybe it’s because
though seemingly so dramatically different
they’re our parents as well as ancestral homes
for children of them we each truly are   

Thank you Nikki for the invitation to play.  This was fun to write, and about as dangerously close to modern poetry, or stars as I dare get.  

Celtic Goddesses and Gods Part 7

Pryderi- A master of disguise and shapeshifter, he brought the swine from the Otherworld. He is son of Rhiannon, and associated with the pig or boar. 

Rhiannon- A Goddess of knowledge and an aspect of the All Mother. She is called Queen Mother and is associated with horses as the Queen Mare. She was originally called Rigatona or the Great Queen. Her symbols are apple, a mare, and three birds. 

Robur- A God of forests, in particular oaks, he is the monad of all oaks. He is a tree God known as the Forest King, and is depicted with mistletoe tangled in his hair and beard. His symbols are a budding oak staff and woodland animals. 

Rosemerta- A Goddess of abundance and plenty, she is Lugh’s wife and young aspect of the All Mother. Her symbols are fertile gardens, flowers, and a cornucopia filled with good things. 

Sadv- A Goddess of the forests, she is called “The Deer Goddess.” Mother to Oisin the poet, her totem animal is a doe. 

Sirona- A Celtic Venus of astral nature, she is a stellar and solar Goddess. Her consort is Borvo. She is usually depicted with a small dog. Healing Goddesses were often associated with dogs because the lick of a dog was thought to have curative powers. 

Smertullos- A God of the abyss and associated with the unmanifested, he is called The Preserver and Lord of Protection. His symbols are a snake with a ram’s head and a snake belt. 

Sucellos- A God of life, death, and fertility, he is the Dagda’s twin ruler of the dark half of the year. He has such beauty that to look upon his face would bring death, so he appears in many disguises and shapes. He carried a large spear. 

Taillte- An Irish Earth Goddess of August and Lughnassad, she is daughter of the King of Spain, foster mother to Lugh, and lives on the magickal Hill of Tera. Teltown is named after her as are the Tailltean Games (Irish Olympics). 

Taliesin- A Welsh Bard, prophet, the greatest poet, and master shapeshifter, he is son of Kerridwen. He foretells many of the future events in British history, and is thought to be the scribe of the Gods. He is a writer of poetry and music, and a magick maker. The quill, riddles, and harp are his symbols. 

Taranis- A God of the passing seasons, storms and thunder, he is associated with with the eight-spoke wheel of the year. 

Tarvos Triaranos- A God of vegetation and a young aspect of Kernunnos, he is born at Coventina’s well. His symbols are willow or oak and three gray cranes. 

Tethra- A shadowy God of the sea and magick, representing the elements of Air and Water. He is also associated with the albatross and seagulls. 

Ti Ana (Also Ty Ana, De Ana, Dy Ana)- A Goddess of the house and home, her name means “The Mother” or “Ana of the Household.”

Triana- As the Threefold Mother, she represents the three faces of the Goddess. Sun-Ana is a Goddess of healing, knowledge, and mental arts. Earth-Ana is a Goddess of nature, life and death. Moon-Ana is a Goddess of higher love and wisdom. 

Viviana (Also Vivian, Vivien)- A Goddess of birth and life, she is a bright Goddess of life and love, of mothers, childbirth, and children. Her name means Life Mother, and her symbol is the five-petaled red rose. 

(Source: Exploring Celtic Druidism by Sirona Knight)

Weekday Week: “Wednesday” and “Vatican”

Wednesday is derived from Old English wōdnesdæġ, although the -e- in the Modern English form is somewhat difficult to explain.  This goes back to the Proto-Germanic *Wōdanas dagaz meaning “Day of Odin”, which was used as a translation of the Latin dies Mercurii “Day of Mercury”, presumably due to both deities being associated with wisdom and learning.  Wōdan had a variant Wōdin, which lies behind the Old Norse Óðinn, reborrowed into English as Odin.  The -i- variant may have also existed in English, which would explain the -e- in Wednesday.

The name *Wōdanaz was related to the adjective *wōdaz meaning “excited”, “spirited”, “angry”, “furious”, “spirited”, “raging”.  An obsolete word “wood” meaning “mad” or “insane” descended from that stem, unrelated to the primary meaning of “substance that comes from trees”.  *wōdaz in turn derives from the Proto-Indo-European *weh₂t-, via Verner’s Law, meaning “excited”, “inspired”, “possessed”, “raging”.

A derivative *weh₂t-is became Latin vātēs meaning “prophet”, “seer”, “poet”, “oracle”, which formed the basis of the verb vāticinor “I prophecy”, “I fortell”, etc.  From this verb was formed the word vāticānus, which was the name of one of the seven hills surrounding Rome, from the fact that prophecies would be given there.  Vatican City is, of course, named after that hill.

What then,
if you heard the Word of God,
what then?
Would you preach on the
street corners of proud New York,
between the stalls of the
farmers market?
Would you rage upon the internet,
saying, “Hark! This is the Word of God!”
Or would you quietly consign
yourself to drugs and institutions?
Would you drown His Words out,
blasting metal to electronic,
to sirens and city lights,
the sounds of the New Age,
the Modern World?
What then would you do,
Modern Prophet,
would you speak or be silent?
—  What Then Modern Prophet? - ck
9

‘I’m Not There’, Todd Haynes (2007)

There he lies. God rest his soul, and his rudeness. A devouring public can now share the remains of his sickness, and his phone numbers. There he lay: poet, prophet, outlaw, fake, star of electricity. Nailed by a peeping tom, who would soon discover… a poem is like a naked person. Even the ghost was more than one person…

…but a song is something that walks by itself.

On unlearning prophets and becoming prophecy

1. All this praying
And God still hasn’t
Answered my wish.
I hear the bending of the trees.
The dark wind.
The soft whisper.
He is not going to give it freely.
There is electricity in the air
And ashes in the doorway
Of every monastery for miles.
He is going to test me first.
I am willing.

2. Forty days into this
And my head is empty.
Eyes too full of God to look.
My kitchen is a graveyard.
A testament to my sacrifice.
And like all holy ground
I have not set foot in it for ages.
The whispers come like ravens,
Like children weeping.

3. God has answered me,
But I am his weeping prophet
He says.
His second Isaiah.
All that he tells me
Reeks of viscera and war.

4. I have chewed his words
As communion.
My stomach is empty,
But I have tasted of God.

5. I do not wish to be a martyr,
But I do not wish to be forgotten.

6. No one believes me.
The things that I have seen.
The salt and fire at the end of it.
My mother held my fragile ribs
Between her hands the other day.
Weeping, she told me that God would
Never make me so hollow.

I told her that she must not know God.

7. This is my magic.
The doctors fill my throat with pills
And I resurrect them into porcelain.
I have not seen God’s face in weeks,
But at night I speak into the mirror
And he sends me shadows.

8. I do not think the shadows are from God.

9. He says he knows him, my God.
He says that he was his son,
And he loved Gods very much,
But that is why he betrayed him.
Tried to make himself more.
I told him that love
Is as much a balm as a poison.

The shadow man smiled.

10. He feeds me carrion.
The first thing my earthly body
Holds in weeks.
He tells me that God must
Love me very much.
I beam and ask him
How he knows.
“Because you seem very easy to love,
even as you are now”
I asked him what I was now.
“Decaying” he said.

11. The shadow man will not let me weep.

12. “You are a deceiver.”
I tell him when I see his wings.
“A liar. A murderer.
A king amoung thieves.”
“Yes.” He tells me.
“All this and more.
But this does not mean
I do not speak the truth.
You asked for enlightenment,
But God has made you a plaything.”
“And the ash?” I ask him.
“And the fire, the blood?
These too must be lies?”
I scoffed.
“No. I believe what I have seen.
What has made my heart weep.”
“These things are all true”
He tells me steadily.
“But he has shown you this
Knowing no one will believe you.
You are a prophet.
A foreteller.
A warning bell.
Come with me and I will make you a shaper of worlds.”

13. He has given me a choice.
The light I felt. That steady
Flickering glow like a
Refrigerator bulb
In darkness.
The heaviness of truth.
The weight of knowledge.
Or the dark ocean.
The sculptor’s hands.
A world of my own making.
A ribcage perhaps not so hollow
And without such a heavy heart.

14. I have always preferred the dark whisper.

15. There is a great crash outside
My bedroom window.
The sycamores are falling.
I know this. I do.
But I sit beneath my covers
With a smile of my face
At his anger.
My body, once emaciated
With fastings, weeks lost
In a vision filled haze, now
Regaining its healthy plump
Shape.
I do not want to be a martyr.
I think.
So I will become the pyre’s flame.

16. My shadow visits me and I tell him
About my dream. The one
Where I pull myself out of water
And God hides his gun.
He does not smile.
He tells me no one should tell me
what payment is owed to them for love.
For the first time in a long time,
I understand.

17. At dawn, I unmade.
I said, “Let there be dark.”
And there was dark.
The shadow man
And I smiled.
For we were well pleased.

When it’s over, he clings to me
Face soaked, he clings to me
Buries his face in my shoulder
“Oh, God” spinning in his mouth on repeat
And I think, “stop”
There is no greater power than you and me
Boy, pray to me
I am your absolution 
Our hands are outstretched
Palms up, yes, but fingers curled tight 
We smell like sin and sorrow 
We are anti-prophets
We call forth the dark and pretend we see it coming 
Through clenched teeth and sunburst eyes
—  Pray to Me Instead

At night everyone would sleep
But Ali would the orphans seek
With a smile, He cured the weak
With a touch on the orphans cheek
Mawlah Oh Ali, touch on my head too
Surley we are all orphans after You!

- Fatima Abo Turab

19th Ramadan. The day ebn Muljam hit Imam Ali (as) during prayer and wounded Him.

I am a new sort of prophet.
The kind your find sobbing in bathroom stalls,
Preaching poetry instead of prayer.

I’m sorry that I slipped
And now all my sermons
Are covered in blood.
But what’s a religion
Without a little sacrifice, right?
What’s a prophet
Without a little madness running through them?

I only speak for god.
I don’t not pretend to know her.
And she burns like matches in my head.
Burn like Novocain.
Like ghost limbs and amputation.
Like Dresden in a sandbox.

Made a new sort of gospel.
Sinners O Sinners, gather round.
Found a new toy
To sink your guilt into.
Watch them pick
At the parables like seeds.
Watch them argue over every interpretation,
And follow none of it.

Don’t worry,
This gospel only asks for the basics.
A couple teeth,
A new strand of pearls,
A little blood on an altar place,
Your lover’s hands,
Your lover.
Nothing too radical.

We don’t have time for each other anymore
Let alone this.
Too many tuition bills to pay.
Too much heart ache shoved into the dark.

“Do you understand this?”
I want to ask.
“Don’t you see
How this world is killing me?
How I will break the world
If you asked me too?”

So sing me a homily,
And I might pour a glimpse
Of the rapture in your coffee cup.
Destruction always comes when you least expect it.
The horse shoes tapping on my cerebellum
Tell me this much.

Hell isn’t always fire and brimstone.
It is a silent house
Filled up with empty.
It is King Midas in a pocket book.
Sorrow sown into your soil,
That kind of sickness runs deep.
Here, even the willows are weeping.

Cracked. Crumbling. Cremated.
Hear my hymn for the way
We all fall apart.
There are no saviors here.
No triumphs over death.
Only blood.
Only blood.
Do not mistake my suffering
For martyrdom.
There is a difference.

Glory be to the fallen ones,
To the
60 hours a week still clinging, ones.
To the
Purple crescents stamped under each eye, ones.
To the
I’m just trying to fucking survive, ones.

Light one up for me, will you?

Here repentance comes from dry mouths,
And cracked throats.
Pour a little wine for a blessing,
Pour a little more to forget.
Both will still leave you aching
When morning comes
To drink the moon to dust.

So make a sign of the cross
At the door
This church is a long way from sanctified.
But we are trying.
And that is all our broken hands can give.

Be no more sinner.
Be sin.
Be ravenous, you are a fallen thing.
Be ravenous, you are.

I heard you found a new religion
where the angels make false promises
to false Gods in flash cars.

Morality is like salty water.

I hear her preaching from the pulpit
the necessity of modesty and fidelity.
How to be loving is to be faithful.

And my shoulders rumble with suppressed laughter.

Too many hypocrites and needless prophets,
too many doing good to mask their profits;
too many who have seen it all before.

I look at the stars but see only the void.

— 

Conjugal

By Ryan Havers

Can you handle a love like religion?

Where the flesh is there,
And the blood flows free,
And her mind is laid bare,
But her hands seem to bleed

Can you handle a love like religion?
Her words written down for the masses to see,
And the meaning there to understand if you read,
But they never asked her what she often sees,
Prophet and poet nameless she seems,

Could you have a love like religion?
With its softness in pain she moves through rooms,
Touching some lives and brightening gloom,
Yet her face still stays like a sun never set,
Her twilight betrays a life of regret,

Could you have a love like religion?
There are those who hate, because they adore,
And those who come freely to litter her shores,
Some come back saying they believe,
But she’s lived kind enough to know that they’ll leave,

Could you watch this love like religion?
She sits alone for ten nights and a day,
Sorting the voices in her mind away,
Prophet or not quiet escapes her,
Solemn she seems as her mouth betrays her,

Could you watch this love like religion?
Her teeth drip words of knowledge and fact,
Her eyes see into these hearts with cracks,
All is a book from which she reads,
Easy enough to know what they need,

Could you ask for a love like religion?
She is always there, most of the time she is not,
And under the flesh there is a heart she forgot,
You see she is numb in a cold deathly way,
One you can’t fix or wish quite away,

Could you ask for a love like religion?
Where her time is filled up from helping the people,
And sometimes she wishes to jump off the steeple,
An embodiment of hope it seems she is without,
Yet they believe and fear her with little to no doubt,

Why do you wish for a love like religion?
Did you think it would stay because of her holy body,
And the prophetess scripture which flows from her tears,
Did you miss the stories of her walking on fire,
Did you think she could save you and absolve your fears?

Why do you wish for a love like religion?
The golden rays leave burns on her flesh,
Her voice became hoarse from singing as they left,
She is alone and surrounded by people all the time,
And if you ever asked her she’d say “I don’t mind”

Why was I made with love like religion?

—  She is like religion, full of holy and doubt.
Humans learnt to write to do Accounting

“The first recorded name in history belongs to an accountant, rather than a prophet, a poet or a great conqueror.” Humans started writing essentially to keep records of their crops during the rise of Agricultural Revolution.

The earliest message in writing we have is: “29,086 measures. Barley. 37 months. Kushim.” Kushim is the name or title of the accountant. W👀T.

MUHARRAM | 2015 (1437)

Incredible how the simple phrase of “Ya Hussain!” completely overwhelms an entire nation.

Insha’Allah we don’t take this opportunity lightly (reminder to myself first), the lessons of this great tragedy that we commemorate yearly transcends far beyond a simple remembrance and recalling of historic events.

In the words of Allama Iqbal: “Imam Hussain (a.s) uprooted despotism forever and his surging blood has nourished a timeless blossom of truth and freedom”.

I pray that the mu’mineen around the world are able to commemorate the sacrifice of Imam Hussain (a.s) safely and peacefully this year. 

A Rare Image Of Frederick Douglass Around The Time Of His Escape From Slavery Circa 1841

He became the most photographed American in the 19th century-He loved photography and sitting for photos, but almost never smiled in photographs, with exception of one six months before he passed in 1895

Frederick Douglass on the Promise of Photography-Gregory Fried, Suffolk University- Douglass considered photography, a crucial aid in the quest to end slavery and achieve civil rights.

Man is the only picture-making animal in the world. He alone of all the inhabitants of the earth has the capacity and passion for pictures … Poets, prophets, and reformers are all picture-makers, and this ability is the secret of their power and achievements: they see what ought to be by the reflection of what is, and endeavor to remove the contradiction.

–Frederick Douglass

Wonder what Douglass would think of selfies?