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Image for the poem Sacred Contracts XXIII: The Nature of Strays

Sacred Contracts XXIII: The Nature of Strays

† † †
1. Realization: i † † †  
† † † †
Itís understood † † †  
when a stray snaps † † †  
at a hand(out). † † †  
Itís their past, † † †  
their experience, † † † †
a proven defense † † †  
against steel-toed † † †  
smiles posed as † † † †
mercy in the street. † † †  
† † † †
Itís the chance † † †  
you take by † † †  
opening your heart † † †  
to get close to it. † † †  
† † † †
2. Realization: ii † † †  
† † † †
You canít become † † †  
discontent or take † † †  
personally its lone † † †  
misconception † † †  
of a life it only † † †  
lives to possess, † † †  
or doesnít understand † † †  
how the taste † † † †
formed as † † † †
teeth into † † † †
the long roots † † †  
of its mouth. † † † †
† † † †
Anubis whispers † † †  
the difference † † † †
between natives, † † † †
immigrants, and † † † †
tourists; Anput † † †  
whispers who † † † †
its heart should † † †  
trust, who not. † † †  
But, sometimes, † † †  
years of self-neglect † † †  
and societal conditioning † † †  
confuses its natural instinct. † † †  
It forgets who it was, † † †  
can no longer hear † † †  
its canine gods, † † † †
assumes the lie † † †  
as a life of truth † † †  
it must endure. † † †  
† † † †
†3) Realization: iii † † †  
† † † †
One does not become † † †  
self-focused or doubt † † †  
their own intent † † †  
through light and † † †  
goodness of heart. † † †  
Or, regret having † † †  
opened to a † † †  
waning sentient † † †  
despite what † † †  
pain manifests. † † †  
It's the experience † † †  
one must chance † † †  
to survive ensuing † † †  
guilt for not ever † † †  
having tried. † † †  
† † † †
4) Realization: iv † † †  
† † † †
Some strays are ready † † †  
to receive; others, † † †  
content not missing † † †  
something they've † † †  
only ever dreamed. † † † †
† † † †
Some already belong † † †  
to someone else, † † †  
and suffer from † † †  
a sacrificial choice † † †  
so palpably prevalent † † †  
nothing you extend † † †  
will ever seem secure † † †  
enough to get † † †  
them to gravitate † † †  
toward truth, to lick † † †  
the birth extended † † † †
from your finger, † † † †
and never again † † † †
beg for scraps. † † † †
† † † †
You can recreate † † † †
every hieroglyph † † †  
and broken clay slate † † †  
you've translated † † †  
on independent † † †  
evolution from dirt † † † †
before them, † † †  
but, it may never † † †  
be enough to get † † †  
them to see the † † †  
lie they're living † † †  
is killing them † † †  
more than the † † † †
pain of truth † † † †
ever could. † † †  
† † † †
5) Realization: v† † †  
† † † †
The dark stray † † † †
with sunken eyes † † †  
and thinning coat † † †  
sees tumbleweeds, † † †  
has-been lives † † †  
and wannabes † † † †
it's committed † † † †
its life to believe. † † † †
† † † †
And you, † † † †
depleted, † † † †
accept leaving † † †  
to preserve † † † †
one minuscule † † † †
truth you'll never † † † †
surrender to a † † † †
lie in the streets. † † † †
† † † †
6) Realization: vi † † †  
† †
Persistence factors † † †  
the difference † † †  
between the giver † † †  
who desires only † † †  
to Love and serve † † †  
and the predator † † †  
out for a trophy † † † †
from the kill-shot † † †  
of a stray's ability † † †  
to produce for † † † †
the factory, or † † †  
dinner table. † † † †
† † † †
Experienced strays † † †  
are street-smart, † † † †
smell the difference. † † †  
And, possess a † † †  
saint's patience † † †  
to wait it out. † † † †
† † † †
7) Realization: vii † † †  
† †
You ask me † † †  
to share the † † †  
wisdom, when † † †  
to hold on, † † †  
when to let go. † † † †  
Each stray has † † † †
their own unique † † †  
experience fired † † † †
by belief or † † † †
lack of faith † † †  
in the fruition † † † †
of dreams. † † † †  
† † † †
I would say to you: † † †  
as long as you † † †  
build strength, † † †  
let them bite; † † †  
let them resist. † † †  
Let them circle you; † † †  
Itís part of the process. † † †  
Let them snarl; † † †  
Let them bark until † † †  
their lungs are spent, † † †  
lunge until † † † †
their weakened † † †  
state begs them, † † †  
...quit. and, lying † † † †
there, half-starved † † † †
of life, gasping † † † †
for breath - † † †  
they exhale † † † †
and submit † † † †
to Love. † † † †
† † † †
I would say: † † †  
if your strength † † † †
wanes thin, † † †  
if your arm † † † †
numbs from † † †  
extended offerings † † †  
that have crusted † † † †
between time's † † † †
stained fingertips, † † †  
and you smell † † †  
the frozen Winter † † † †
coming over the † † †  
mountains from † † † †
its Autumn hunt, † † † †
and you have no coat † † †  
to cover your bones, † † † †
turn. Walk, or, † † † †
run toward warmth. † † † †
† † † †
Do not look back † † †  
into the fading shadow † † †  
of what you've left † † †  
or youíll trip and fall, † † †
become embittered † † †
in rock salt. †† † † †  
Look only toward † † † †
the crossroads † † † †
you approach, † † †  
toward those † † †  
kindred strays † † †  
of love and truth: † † †  
those destined as † † † †
Sacred Contracts. † † † †
~ † † † †
† † † †
† † † †
Author's note (something I've never done but feel led to on this one): 16 years ago I was dying in a spiritually defunct marriage. Torn between what direction I needed to go to save myself, I fasted for 14 days (only water), meditated, and prayed. On the eve of the 14th day I was granted a vision of abandoned puppies in the corner of a dark alley. They were all different colors. Black, white, red, spotted, golden, brown, etc. Yet, they were all from the same litter. They would fight to the death over meager scraps tossed to them from passers by. And then consume those who had died. It was one of the most horrible things I'd ever witnessed in my life. I wanted to turn away and yet save them from themselves at the same time. † † †  
† † † †
They were starving, cold, and alone. I was behind a line that instinctively I knew I couldn't cross. There was all kinds of healthy food at my disposal to offer them. †So, I began coaxing them with food in my hand, begging them to cross the line and survive. A few would venture from the dark alley but something would scare them back into the corner before they reached my hand. There was an hourglass running down fast, and I knew I would have to turn and leave when the final grain of sand fell through the passage between north and south. I was on my knees begging the puppies to please eat, please live, please survive. That all they had to do was venture from that alley...just trust. † † † †
† † † †
But none could, and the hourglass vanished, as did the vision. I was surrounded by nothing but white silence, deafening silence, like nothing else existed. A voice said, "You have fasted and prayed for direction and I have heard your plea for the sustenance of survival. A door will open tomorrow and you will go forth into the world from all you have known or believed. The puppies represented all peoples of the planet. All races. All †nations. All religions. Yet they were all born of me. You see how they fought and killed one another for lack of love." † † † †  
† † † †
"Those who trust to leave what they know behind and seek shall find their destinies if they continue on the path. However, those who look back will become bitter salt, as did the parable of Ado. You cannot take anyone with you that is not willing to leave. You cannot save anyone who is not willing to save themselves. You are to walk onward, meeting only those who cross your path. You are not to leave the path unless I direct you to follow me. You are to Love and plant seeds. But, most of all, you are to remember you are never alone, for I shall always be with you, and shall send you signs along they way when you feel you can't go on." † † † †
† † † †
- The next day a fully furnished basement apartment became available through a friend of a friend, and hadn't even been advertised yet. It was exactly what I needed and the price I could afford. I left everything behind that had accumulated in my marriage, but still split half the outstanding debts to be responsible, despite the fact that my salary was half what his was. I carried only what was mine personally, my mother's and my grandmothers that I could pass them down to future generations. I cannot tell you how scared I was - it's not easy walking away from decades of building. From a home you've owned, a garden you've planted, flowers you've sown. I only worked part-time. But, I survived that, and a lot more, still am. Yet, honestly I have never been happier, nor has the future looked brighter despite dust clouds that rise. † † † †
† † †
I don't know why I feel led to share this intimate story with you all. I am a very private person, and less than a handful of people know of this, only those I expressly trust. Unless, there's someone out there who needs know, and it was given to me for such a time as this. So I open and trust all is as it should be despite impending judgment.†
Ahavati
Written by Ahavati
Published
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