“Of One and Many Worlds”



Of One and Many Worlds by Rayn Roberts available @ http://www.poeticmatrix.com/title/roberts.aspx

The Book

This collection covers a wide expanse of topics from metaphysical issues about the nature of existence, to suffering, right action, aesthetic experience and how we live our everyday lives. Intellectual honesty, even skepticism, are important parts of the volume. The poet acknowledges that there are ultimate questions, but denies that there are final answers that could be given by any final authority.

We see his keen eye for the beauty of nature and change within nature, and we can watch his keen nose at work, close to nature, sniffing out the joys and suffering of everyday living.
— Paul Dolinsky, PhD, from the Preface

Like a prophet – subtle/rude, elated/defeated, but always accessible and wise – his words call complacent silence to a duel.
— Lesley Synge, author of Organic Sister

Rayn Roberts sees the spiritual dilemmas and opportunities of Korea with clear eyes, getting just the right words about them on paper.
— David Mason, author of Spirit of the Mountains: Korea’s San-shin and Traditions of Mountain-Worship

Rayn Roberts

Rayn Roberts is found in print and online at Chronogram, Rattle, Rattapallax, Retort Magazine, The Sow’s Ear Review, Voices in Wartime, Opening of The Heart, PoetsWest, Thunder Sandwich, The Pedestal Magazine, Fireweed, Sauce Box, Gypsy Magazine, Tamafyhr Mountain Poetry, Turbula, Void Magazine, Poet’s Corner in Fieralingue, Poetic Voices and others. He appears in four anthologies, In the Arms of Words: Poems for Distaster Relief from Sherman Asher & Foothill Publishing, The Book of Hope & The World Healing Book from Beyond Borders Press and Paths from The Philosophical Library of Escondido, California. These books include new and established poets Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Rita Dove, Marilyn Chin and a great voice for peace, The Dalai Lama. In 2006, Evolving Editions Press in New York included him in their “Illuminations” series, volume three. “Illuminations” is concerned with interfaith understanding through poetry, art, photography and interviews. Of One and Many Worlds is his third book. In 2003 he toured the U.S. to promote Jazz Cocktails & Soapbox Songs. He is also the author of The Fires of Spring, a collection of Buddhist poems written in South Korea. Website:www.geocities.com/raynrobkorea

From Of One and Many Worlds:

When Ray Charles Checked Out Memory at Chu Suk*
He could not escape the news reports
Of how he used women
Like dope
Had them, tossed them when done,
But the week he left his body
America mourned Reagan’s death,
The good and evil made—Poor, blind and black in America,
Had the Boogie-woogie at an early age
Had the calling,
Wrapped in shades
Ray Charles leaned his body back
Tilted his head up
As if he’d turned his inward gaze on paradise
And sang
Swayed above the black and white
Wood and wire,
And for the short while
He took the stage
Time ceased to turn, death squads ceased to kill
There were no A-Bombs, AIDS
Arms sales, Contras, cold war…
All the walls
Of every evil empire fell
Because a sightless man found a way
Into the Seeing Heart—
And though death takes all, some are honored
And some grieved for: all that week
And longer
I remembered Ronald,
but grieved for Ray
For an hour in autumn I saw all time

I was alone, yet not!
Saw a million years and more
Beings I’d been
All it took to come to what I am:
Sad for what is
What lives as if to spite death
But cannot win, what pushes
Against a tide of pain…

A last cicada singing in a twisted pine

Chanting for a future
And not a single other for miles
To hear the song,
The union of two as far off
As the cat’s eye nebula opening slowly
Outward —Mind being born—
A neon rose glowing in the dark…

Night like summer thunder came down:

A vision, no, a memory
Of all the flesh and blood I’d seeded
Or killed throughout time, mothered
Nurtured, kidnapped, protected—
But not this time— I saw the fact
And the lie of my existence:
The truth of the Chu Suk moon.

*Chu Suk: Korea Thanksgiving