Poem 48

A poem that affirms the poet’s dependence on grace descending.

Time was, not so long ago either, when I sought for rewards;
Now I look on while others take their bow and the world applauds.

My Master has taught me that ambition is a pretty bubble;
The fairest edifice today tomorrow is a heap of rubble.

Here in plain straightforward language he is recalling his earlier desire to make a splash in the literary pond through his talents and new message. The plain language underlines that he no longer wants to impress. In Meher Baba’s cosmology the whole world we perceive is likened to a bubble of illusion and an epic picture of time and change is drawn.

My Master has taught me not to trouble about anything except keeping
My heart comfortable and quiet, for there the Infant God is sleeping.

This sweet calm inner nativity calls to mind something Upasani Maharaj, the mentor of Meher Baba, once taught:

If in the cradle of one’s mind God is put to sleep and with the lead of love the cradle is swung,  then, in due course, whoever does it attains Godhood. You people, however, put your Jiva [self] there and go on bawling about for mother, and then you complain that your mind runs about constantly! (Talks, Vol.4, 464)

‘Stay by my side,’ He has said. ‘When I break my Silence
Your Beloved God will awake, and your dust will sing.’

I have given away my harvest, burnt the stubble and reploughed
Ready for the seed of His silence and the rains from His Grace-cloud.

Francis has cleared away the crop of hopes and deeds from the past and waits in dependence and with patience for Grace to descend like rain from the sky.

When, in His infinite compassion, He speaks the renewing Word,
Position and honour, to say the least, will appear rather absurd.

I have nothing further to trouble about, so I remain bowed before Him,
Knowing that the healing of nations and my Self-knowledge depend on His whim.

Gentle acceptance, then suddenly a phrase “the healing of nations” (Rev.22.2) reminds us that not just the poet’s personal salvation but the apocalyptic fate of the world awaits the divine whim.