Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Grateful Dead, Muttering Madzub

looking from behind the screen
through eyes that don’t belong
the flickering spectral lights that form
ghosts I live among

strange the specters their dance perform
with movements that are not what they seem
the skeletal forms that rattle and contort
on empty movie screens

what is the flick the flickering glow
that dances in my head
theatrical voices the actors and stage
are all among the dead

we are the grateful dead they cry
as they chortle their muffled cries
those who live, live again
and those who are dead just die

the marionettes with strings attached
like on Día de los Muertos dance
where ancestral forms appear to return
from their shadowed world entranced

the candle’s flame the fire that lights
the lamps that casts their shadows long
the day is night and the night is dark
the specters dance alone

samsara’s cinema with all its charm
with upholstered velvet chairs
the golden banisters and gilded forms
that align the descending stairs

am i a player or patron the actor cries
the deadened echoes across empty theaters hurl
the formless act, the scene is staged
the art that imitates life and death is unfurled

the grateful dead with panned expression
mocks the living form
the masquerade ball that reveals the hidden
where deception cannot perform

the scene has come where hubris sobers
the puppet master is left to ponder
as strings are cut, the voices still
empty minds no longer wander

the bard has declared the world's a stage,
“And all the men and women merely players”.
the masks behind the stage come off
and reveal their hidden layers

the eyes that see and the ears that hear
are not focused on shadow’s dance
the light that shines through the obscured mind
awakens through lights piercing glance

the dead are grateful, the living too
they no longer aimlessly wander
the light is on, the word is true
and I waken from my slumber.


  1. The world is indeed a stage, a play with no dress rehearsal. Do we dare take off our masks and cut the strings of the puppeteer? Trust or madness is required... As Zorba the Greek said,

    "A man needs a little madness or else he never dares to cut the rope and be free."

    Love you bro, madness and all.

  2. Thank you Sister Mel for your insights! I think that a little madness is the appropriate option, since trust requires the delusion to continue thinking that it will all somehow change.

    The wishful thinking that the ego is capable of anything more than a self centered dream is little more than optimistic societal insanity that is considered to be sane and normal.

    Let us with shear wisdom, concentration, attention, insight and inquiry cut the cords of institutional, egoic sanity and step into the freedom that we truly are.

    Thank you!


Mutter with me...