Sacred Calm of Mind as per The Oquaga Spirit. Can poetry alter a state of consciousness? So much in the daily news is disquieting. People have resorted to artificial means to calm themselves. This frequently takes the form of tranquilizers or aspirins. Perhaps even worse- drugs. What if poetry alone induce this sacred calm of mind? Isn’t that preferable other means? Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote a poem called The Day is Done. I think it is a perfect example of poetry’s ability to create the sacred calm of mind. The Oquaga Spirit offered me a shorter poem. The poem, Sacred Calm of Mind, will be presented after this poem is Done.
In 1522, Sir Thomas More wrote (in ‘Four Last Things’): ‘It often happeth, that the very face sheweth the mind walking a pilgrimage, in such wise that other folk sodainly say to them a peny for your thought.'”
THE DAY IS DONE
The day is done, and the darkness
Falls from the wings of Night,
As a feather is wafted downward
From an eagle in his flight.
I see the lights of the village
Gleam through the rain and the mist,
And a feeling of sadness comes o’er me
That my soul cannot resist:
A feeling of sadness and longing,
That is not akin to pain,
And resembles sorrow only
As the mist resembles the rain.
Come, read to me some poem,
Some simple and heartfelt lay,
That shall soothe this restless feeling,
And banish the thoughts of day.
Not from the grand old masters,
Not from the bards sublime,
Whose distant footsteps echo
Through the corridors of Time.
For, like strains of martial music,
Their mighty thoughts suggest
Life’s endless toil and endeavor;
And to-night I long for rest.
Read from some humbler poet,
Whose songs gushed from his heart,
As showers from the clouds of summer,
Or tears from the eyelids start;
Who, through long days of labor,
And nights devoid of ease,
Still heard in his soul the music
Of wonderful melodies.
Such songs have power to quiet
The restless pulse of care,
And come like the benediction
That follows after prayer.
Then read from the treasured volume
The poem of thy choice,
And lend to the rhyme of the poet
The beauty of thy voice.
And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares, that infest the day,
Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs,
And as silently steal away.
Here’s the Oquaga Spirit’s Sacred Calm of Mind
In calm we see a mirror of God.
The lake that’s still reflects the Heavens.
A vision not spoiled by wave or ripple,
And is just as perfect as the sevens.
Be like the uncrossed morning lake
Not touched by boat nor swimmer.
Maintain that sacred calm of mind.
And in you eyes will be God’s glimmer.
The Oquaga Spirit Speaks is available as a product on DSOworks.com. There we also find a thumbnail with a free presentation of the spirit’s poetry. I plan on give recitations on tour. .
Mind Massage is effected through poetry. This is because as physical massage benefits the body; poetry benefits the mind. In order for this to happen, the poems should be beautiful and uplifting. Numerous articles agree on poetry’s beneficial effects.
Regions of the brain linked to memory showed more activity than the general reading network while reading poetry. The world today is dominated “left-brain tyranny,” focusing on details, logic, and metrics. On the other hand, the right-brain focuses on “context, empathy, and the big picture,” according to the award-winning playwright and creative consultant William Ayot.I believe that poetry is as therapeutic for the mind as massage is for the body. By analogy we say, poetry is the art of massage applied to the mind.
Enter my book of poetry, “The Oquaga Spirit Speaks.” Oquaga Lake is perched almost 2,000 high in the Catskill Mountains. Almost every guest at the Lake House senses an immense spiritual presence around the lake. I became personally acquainted a particular spirit on hikes. In addition to being the house piano player at Scott’s Oquaga Lake House, I often led daily”walks”. One of my favorites was to the peak of Bluestone Mountain. We would trek up to a mountain top quarry. Slabs and slates such in the picture below were everywhere. All would take home a prized piece of Deposit bluestone. The spirit’s poetry would be added to the hike. Below is her relevant poem:
Mind Massage at Bluestone Mountain
A mountain of magical stone.
A giant wall of rock,
Quarried in antiquity
To build an ancient clock.
Shaped into evolving circles
By which lunar cycles were timed
And with it the arc of the Sun
Was harmonized in rhyme.
This mandala, wrought of Bluestone
A mystery yet it be;
Is called by the name Stonehenge
That so many still flock to see.
On a mountain of such stone dwell I,
Next to Oquaga Lake’s shore.
For the harmonious peace all around
It seems like Stonehenge at its core.