Run For Deer Life (A Poem)

you run for        deer life
blood shoots through veins of flesh
horns       rattling branches       as
hooves          sink in dark autumn mulch

and         rifleshot cracks         the cold air
shatters your ribs          blood exploding     spraying
you stagger         pain       and run on          pain
world reels in your eyes

rifleshot cracks

your head jerks       odd angle
bony point on right antler        splinters
in near miss       pain   in   side         inside

but        then      eyes clear  as lovewarmthstrength
fills you      pain washes away     spindly legs become
muscled springs launching through forest faster than
before      ever before     and       in mind mixed
of personal moment and species past is sudden
recognition of        GODHOOD       in you but
also utter terrifying            aloneness
other deer in forest      but you the last of herd
of line from out you heaved       bloody sticky awkward

cold air      run     no pain      run      hunter far behind
you reach sweet drinking creek      slow      blood flow from
side of mouth     hot sweet       stagger       fold
to earth        painless grace     vision rolls       breathe
breathe      breathe                   not
two spirits die        in you
your herd         your line
are no more.

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Visiting the Gods in Lilburn, GA

My son’s Sunday school class, at the local Unitarian-Universalist Church, is learning about other world religions this year, and visiting various places of worship. My son is an avowed atheist, as I was at his age (I ultimately became very spiritual in a non-church, agnostic, rationalistic sort of way), but his mother makes him go on the weekends he spends with her.

Yesterday, though, the group was going out to visit the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir (temple), the largest Hindu temple outside of India, which is in, of all places, Lilburn, GA, not what you’d generally consider a main center of culture of any kind, except maybe the sort you get at Walmart. I’ve been wanting to see this place since it was built, and have a huge respect for the Hindu faith, so even though it was my weekend with Nathaniel, I accepted his mother’s invitation for us all to go see.

The place is simply astonishing. Continue reading