in the beginning
the arms are crossed
the body unbloomed


tight, folded
a marionette
needing strings snapped
through the spin

and in  it
there is surrender

the call to
room for arms
to shape

an unstudied empty
wide enough
to hold the whole

and match its spin


About Susan L Daniels

I am a firm believer that politics are personal, that faith is expressed through action, and that life is something that must be loved and lived authentically--or why bother with any of it?
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12 Responses to sema

  1. j4n says:

    Beautiful poem, Susan…well titled

  2. Karin Wiberg says:

    I really like “the body unbloomed.”

  3. annotating60 says:

    It is very beautifully sad.>KB Well tlk some tomorrow.

  4. George Ellington says:

    One of the truest descriptions of the sema that I have ever read, Susan. Your heart embraces distant motion. And time. Swirling spirit. The pole of the body, one hand composing the earth. The other beckoning heaven. Well done, my friend.

    • George, thank you! After I posted this, I was thinking to myself that the only person who can tell me if I have got this right is George Ellington–and here you are! Thank you so much for sharing that with me. Those meditating, spinning men actually reminded me of planets, turning. So beautiful to watch, and cannot believe they share such a personal, mystical union with divinity so easily and publicly. Well, when you are so fused with the universe, why not share it?

      • George Ellington says:

        My pleasure, Susan. And my thanks to you, as always, for sharing your remarkable voice and vision. You are very inspiring. I must admit, the “planets” notion had never even occured to me. I have taken this education of mine too seriously, I think. As I mentioned, the dancer is like a pole, an axis, a “qutb” that links heaven to earth. The prophet was the finest axis, providing focus and inspiration. And yet the very union that he has inspired is often rejected by orthodox believers, much as the sufis themselves have been held in suspicion by the community of the faithful. Much as esoteric Judaism and Christianity may be held at arm’s length. The mystical, however real it may be, however compelling, can be disconcerting for some. Like the planets, every shape is unique, every form, every orbit. Yet always spinning, rising, rising to a beloved aspiration.

  5. Alice Keys says:

    Anything that spins works great for me. Hula hoopers and dervishes. All wear gravestones as hats. Good one here. Plucked my soul strings.

    • Thank you! Yes, we all match that spin, at least a few times in our lives, if we are lucky. I got my spin rolling down hills on purpose as a child, and right this minute, I would love to feel that now.

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