Tuesday, September 07, 2021
Glossator 11 (2021): Cristina Campo: Translation / Commentary
Sunday, June 13, 2021
The Whim: Cantos1-9
The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with everyone who is born of the spirit.
– John 3:8
There is nothing but a bewildered one. There is nothing exercising properties but bewilderment. There is nothing but Allah.
– Ibn Arabi
It seeks to know itself. It is of no use to ask why it does so.
– Meher Baba
1: O Parvardigar! The Preserver and Protector of All
Everyday the human wakes, wondering
Where on earth, within spirals outside place,
Is one like its love—never anything
Once appearing on par with that pure face
Whose eye flashed eternal in the first soul,
Mirror of day before light, only trace
Of itself, dropping oceans down the whole.
I am here more or less another you
Acting out and in this singular role
No one alone will play, truthlessly true,
Being whatever nothing can be, split
Of time spilling earth’s old excess of new
Thoughts and words and deeds—as if tears, sweat, spit
May turn to sweetness the world’s secret pain.
The fact of infinitely being it
Informs a jumping spider all the same
Now transiting the moon glow of our screen
Like black starlight distilled into a brain
Unfolding the four-fold sense of the seen
Into lightning ideograms of limbs
Hunting the eye-color of longing: green.
Instant conviction that the ocean swims,
Otherwise no species of entity
Finds open its path through labyrinths of skins
Enshrouding the birth immaculately
Of matter, life, thought, and the God whose glance
Marks the plan of all spontaneity
Pointing one asleep/awake in silence.
No one moves the puppet of their being
Without that infinitesimal lance
Sewing the horizon of every string
Far before it is twisted into form
Around the zero-dimensional ring
Adorning the end-origin, this storm
Absolutely safe filling the abyss.
Not a hair on any head comes to harm
In the universe whose expanding bliss
Springs from the seed of your eternal crown
In coils to be beheaded with a kiss
Some shoreless night when the full moon is drowned
In highest seas of future memory
And the pearl of pearls by itself is found.
Stay nearest the secret whimsically
Ever swimming this matrix so clear,
Bound freely now in the one gravity
Whose net saves all from all where I am—here
Long before any were, lost in the care
Unending that pierces each eye, mouth, ear,
Heart with the sweet hook of life’s own navel.
2: You are without beginning and without end
History is not happening today
Here in paradise where we not yet hang
With nothing or not knowing what to say
Other than remember me who once sang
Of something so dearest that knowledge weeps
To recall home the hunger of its pang
In mansions where the king dreaming us sleeps.
How many beings have you ever met
On this horizon scarred with light that leaps
In all directions outspreading the net
Into a view from nowhere so glamorous
That nobody sees you and lives and yet
One still is present like an anchoress
Floating wholly all well now in life’s tomb?
Answer not in thought-words unamorous
Any question left by love in the womb
Far before abyss springs from the recoil
Of asking in the first place like a bomb
Who individuation is, this soil
Of roots underneath gravity,
That black earth of every atom’s toil.
The soul is Mary, not an entity
Of the kind my blindness of thinking sees,
No thing squirming among identity
With shadow forms of fine or gross bodies,
But the real worm itself of life unbound
Echoing ever new in ecstasies
Of self-birth from her own omphalic ground.
Never was and will be again always,
Such is the first order of someone’s sound,
Anyone who verses the rainbow rays
Expanding from these shores of dreaming stones
To find impressions of the perfect maze
Known now-forever to one’s feet alone
In the whim of suffering the very swerve.
The vista of you nails us to the bone
One may say were it not for the pure curve
Of a plus lightspeed smile splitting the frame
Of pronouns, the unwhole skeleton nerve
Of humanity dying not to name
What everything is always seeing,
First image of fire before the eye’s flame.
I know you know my beloved, the being
Whose question calls yonder unlimited
Domains the dark world-desert is fleeing,
A numberless friend losing first his head
To save each from themselves, bleeding such drops
As pierce my bubble-sphere with sighs undead,
Everybody falling before the sight.
3: Non-dual, beyond comparison
Nothing what it thinks it is (divided)
And the one and only one so perfect
That none anywhere ever has a head,
Each face being before number bedecked
In decollation, crowned nameless today
By life’s body, the overboard subject
Beached like Priam, Palinurus, Pompey.
This all along was the absolute plan,
Projecting our purposes far away,
Unframing the picture of each lifespan
With hands born of wind breathing wherever
It will, all the while preferring a man
Whose right love the left does not outclever,
One whose sigh knows silently where to go.
Remember the shore of birth, the treasure
Retrieved there in midst of the first death throe,
This vast cetacean stranding of dark souls
Bleating syllables of origin’s blow
From which nothing recovers only rolls
Playing it again upon the om point
To sew time’s hide-and-seek game through new holes?
The supreme power splitting every joint
Of being’s chain ain’t imaginable,
Hands of one that all hands bind and anoint,
Tapping open and closed the gates of hell
Or paradise as love dictates within
This pulsing of nerves immeasurable
Enveloped in image’s very skin.
When Teresa sees the beauty of them—
Peripherally my eyes imagine,
Unable to sustain the diadem—
Every overestimation falls so shy
That no wonder it is merely the hem
Mind and heart are commanded to hold, why
That limen is what best molds your grasp.
Line is horizon, the far-nearest sky
Within which all that makes contact may clasp,
The special place for love itself to meet,
Filling the spectrum between shout and gasp,
An omnipresent spot or endless street
Where all oppositions bow to the one
Whose presence proves everyone wrong, his feet.
See their shadow trample upon the sun,
The illimitable darkness of light
Outshining above and below the run
Of gravity, hear their steps in the night
Stalking the spirals of a lost thought’s ear
Like a panther nonpareil in whose sight
You will no more protect what never was.
4: and none can measure You
She felt like counting things, went to the sea,
Spent three days there numbering the waves,
Seventeen thousand eight hundred and three,
And then to a desert, among the caves
Within a centimeter of sand where
Dance grains of void like dusty crystal graves
Containing only themselves, what is there.
Truth is—heard in dream—the truth is a tree,
This whole slow bomb branching into the air
Of one worlds writing now by dreaming we
Asleep in the signature all over
Lining the art of petals such as these,
The ones sewn into beloved lovers
Of life’s full zero of the human form.
Number it as long as you can hover
Here, daring once to unswallow the worm
Of seeable spheres sprouting from a point
By falling in fronds unto their own germ,
And fail to fail to stop before the joint
Of soul and body suddenly sunders
In a dark flurry of stars at flash point.
Not a deity can tally the hairs
Of this—one’s very own—head, not one god
Flames not into being by sparks that dare
To swerve wheresoever spirit will nod,
Sewing by seeing the shape of things bleed
Alive into fresh forms perfectly odd,
Born by chance more necessary than need.
So full all place is with things never found,
Intersections of all with all which seed
In silent explosion the starry ground
So deep to carry my hands even here
In your heart-eyes for a moment unbound
And so light to unclose the furthest near
Like a banner rainbowing in the mind.
For example, in iridescent tear
Shed the skin snakelike from my face, designed
By predawn in a sleep pattern bluer
Than the purest lazurite ever mined
And cupped as a double crystal ewer
Like old interlocking hands of a man
Whose sight pours silence into the viewer.
Truly no ruling shall there be nor plan
Of this one and only reality,
Never a marking of its endless span
Beginningless, far too present to see,
And still just like that our appointment
Is kept, arriving my breath to where she
Waits, filling the ink of night with her eyes.
5: You are without color
A thousand yesses to all that transpires
Upon this sphere infinite where we crawl
Like ants spying the path of their desire
Until today the curve of the whole ball
Carries my heart into the first first dawn
Whose hue memory will never recall
(Goldening green eye of the Amazon).
Show me a mirror that does not reflect,
Refuse the force whereby a breath is drawn,
Lock someone’s corpse never to genuflect
Before mind, energy, matter, the whole
Massive mess moving totally unchecked,
Charioteering itself like a soul
Across the curve of all continua.
Everything here burning is in that coal
Of brightest ever black as Siddartha
Waking up and seeing the world anew
So good luck voting here other than yea,
Appearing elsewhere than in the pale dew
Of motherless birth like a falling word
Or moth-wing flaming the sun’s light from view.
At what point in whatever story heard
Has any of it made the slightest sense
Or single truth-drop from the cloud emerged
Other than unknowing’s own turbulence,
Something like the pure tint of this color
Out of space, a most ultimate presence
Sweetened inside bewilderment’s dolor?
Not beings but fatal contradiction
We are, latest singular plural spore
Of lives scarring the corpus with fiction,
Shadowing in ever-expanding gloss
That text unseen, yet felt, without diction,
In echoing sport of children across
The day’s darkening oceanic skies.
See the impossibility of loss,
Take and read the total zero of whys,
This infinite sum of points escaping
Everywhere from your dreaming, unborn eyes
As if the one behind all creating
Is simply the pupil’s simplemost act
Of missing the moment of its shaping.
Something that nothing will ever distract,
A person so spontaneously friend
Now friendlier than the friendliest fact
Of original friendship without end
Right in the middle of every movie
Suddenly taking life by the left hand
To walk straight out of this void cinema.
6: without expression
As the boulder he and his beloved
Are climbing at once begins to give way,
Rolls back crushing soon their small bodies dead,
He twists as if somehow to shield her clay
With his, curl space beyond the weight of dust,
Pressing gravity this once to obey
A will other than its own heavy lust.
Can you fathom the secret of their smile
In that total moment of helpless trust
When universe, contracted to a trial
Of instant spirit, with nowhere to flow
Save through itself, unfolds a new while
Neither temporal, eternal, or now
Blazing to gold the ash of all words?
Help me to hug that love, to be not vow
Whatever alone knows silence, as birds
This moment musicking in nearfarness
A sweet raw scent erasing the deaf herds
Of noise still demanding just less and less
Of a more and more available free
Among palms who labor first to confess.
Time is not much—do not ask—like a key
To no door, nor to mention any state
To save you from life or death which can’t be
Regardless, simply a sense of breath, fate,
If you will, some mist of dream on the glass
Murmuring echoes back where we await
Thoughts stirring in the diorama grass.
Some days immutable so full of light
And strange like speaking in tongues to the gas
Whose souls we once were in unearthly night
Already too long after the first sound
By saying nothing produced the big plight
Of being others, not one but we, bound
By birth into cosmic history.
Others so heavy with some ancient wound,
Unable to respire the mystery,
Only boring horror of me hanging
As brain or hookbait of self-puppetry
Signifying nothing—muffled panting
Of the heart needing water not vapor
Trapped in required facemasks of ranting.
So the next day spent burning this taper
Fly the whole world upon smoke unsaying
Whatever ink can shadow on paper,
Let all the drones of silent prayers praying
Themselves until the end of ends swallows
The tongue express what truth is conveying
Without pressing lips to flute, snake to ear.
7: without form
Those beautiful hands Saint Teresa saw,
Same ones each breath holding all our hearts,
Conducing crystal to leaf, limb to claw,
Midwifing birth’s whole into body parts,
Move here themselves exactly as they wish,
Not unlike an atom’s flow into quartz
Or the swirl of seas into fins of fish.
Whatever wondrous thing this is, neither
This nor that and both (query Ramakrish-
na), wherever one folds between breather
And breath the line of one’s own living who,
It is what it is and, yes, not either,
Forever an X for him, her, me, you
To fathom alone wherein silence drowns.
Is there something to be, someone to do,
In the daily masquerade of sad clowns,
Mad heroes, and bad sages, idiot
Slave-porters all to painted leaden gowns
With masks unhiding faces hideous,
Or, in deserts wild where unnamed flowers
People the sun with thoughts mysterious?
No directions lead to the sudden hours
Where the whole shape of life’s monstrous circle
Feels to fall itself in unseen showers
Landing in my mind’s lap like some purple
Skin of ouroboros shed around dawn
By the still centrifuge universal
Until I understand and it is gone.
Give yourself a name, sex, now run ahead
And place the stiff neck of that tiny pawn
Unpromotable to king on the red
Line of any guillotine’s little moon
Because everyone both living and dead
Is dying to fly from the dark cocoon
Of your cosmos into our home of homes.
Planlessly plan to meet me yourself soon
On a shoreless shore where the ocean foams
Bubbles sweet as spittle from Krishna’s flute
Or upon primordial plains where roams
Only love’s sigh bearing scent of the fruit
Of paradise, or elsewhere wherever
You want because to here there is no route.
Walking down the street today I never
See anyone anything anywhere
Until one far more circumspect ever
Appears right in the middle of a prayer
Silently there sculpting the wild wind
Into waves of sight and shadows of hair
Darker than darkness and lighter than light.
8: and without attributes
A light shirt woven of your signature
Is the one my naked heart wants to wear
In this darker celestial color
And living texture of something’s hair
With the weight of a warm feeling or thought
Interested in everything without care
To breathe between all that is and is not.
Colder than today have you ever felt
In the people-less world of people fraught
With mirror-forms frightful that live to melt
Under the tongue of one’s own siren gaze
Spitting breath’s spice to the asteroid belt
Of history’s tomorrows, that flat maze
Or screen whose blade now beheads Earth’s children?
The only god who will save us—O rays
Of my real eyes neither seen nor hidden!—
Is the one one now is, this that no one
Seems willing to face in the lion’s den
Of your own lion-soul or soul-cave sun
Blindingly brighter than all daily dreams
And beaming from the ears of everyone.
Thread myself like zero into the seams
Of the garment of garments, God’s rainbow
Of flying sky whose silent freedom beams
In all directions or none with the glow
Of becoming whatsoever it may
And is and will be forever ago
The simply true happiness here to stay.
Or wait—while the thing-counting never stops
Adding un-verses to none—let me sway
Like a tear swimming itself in the drops
Of light that cannot escape your pupil
In some pink sunset drowning the rooftops
Up through the gravity unusual
Or smile sometimes known as anagogy.
One day (says heart with sweet mouths quadruple
Aping the tetragrammatology
Of causes unsaying its own event),
One day the time of speleology,
Of downclimbing the cave of time’s descent
Will uncoil itself as a butterfly
Surprised by its spontaneous ascent.
Since from the beginning of the first why
Or unplace of all places glimpsed unseen
To the final it, passing through each eye
Shut tightest on itself or piercing keen
As an eagle’s, this one spot has it all,
A knot of blue and white and brown and green
Where right now no world has ever been known.
9: You are unlimited and unfathomable
As they scribbled with the friend about scars
Of the horizon, more and more was said
Than known and vice-versa; words like stars
Cut themselves from void, burning to be read
By a few disjointed no ones who feel
That everything alive is beyond dead
And more than any mind may observe, real.
To die in secret is the life, unheard
Outside boundless silence who feels the deal
In all directions since the first sigh stirred
Your waters of sleep the way it pleases
To be what things are really like, absurd
Or flooded with form that never freezes
Swallowing all on the way to nowhere.
Now one more reason to love the breezes
That breathe upon the temples of your hair
Whose priestesses sweeter than the honey
Dropping unseen on their own heart-tongues’ prayer
Sway as lions to drive off the money
Changers, thieves of blood who have no business
Near the pure pulse of something so funny.
No one will ever stop laughing at this
Which nor can be indicated as that—
A wild abyss of mountains of such bliss
As is hardly felt living on the flats
Or in cities dense with desire’s pain,
Only closer to the sea habitats
Of Andean stones singing in the rain.
What I mean is that the entire world
Of everything (all) is totally vain
Or simply the shadow of a dance whirled
Of itself by God hanging round your neck
In cords out of life-creating cuts twirled
Down to the diameter of a speck
Whose color dots the pupil of image.
If at some moment on this mountain trek
All strength stumbles before the vast mirage
And the bubble of breath drowns in the blur,
Do not think that you are not the mad mage
Whose spell is causing all stuff to occur
Or that somehow anyone arrives here
Else than from here, the future where we were.
O bewildering whisper of the ear
Speaking all truth in a spiral of spots
Still-staying faster than the speed I hear
Passing time by through a series of knots
Each nested in the other yet somehow
Shortcutting the circuit of endless thoughts
How on earth to face whatever you are?