Hold me close

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How strange it is,
   This thing called family.
   Tight bonds of worry and concern
   That span the depth and breadth
   Of oceans, seas and the awkward
   Timetabling of international phone calls.

How strange it is,
   This exclusivity of love
   For those alive primarily
   In daydreamed fantasy
   Whilst those whose everyday
   Toil keeps us alive
   Slip below the scope of our radar.

How strange it is
   The pain felt upon brief separation
   From ones enmeshed with ‘I’ and ‘mine.’
   Yet largely unphased are we
   By the painful arising and ceasing
   Of life in the rest of the world.

How wonderful it would be
   To be free of this
   Bondage of partiality
   That keeps us locked away
   From seeing our true nature
   Of expansive interdependency.

How wonderful it would be
   To have a heart filled with love
   Upon mere sight of that
   Possessing the breath of life
   Emboldened by caring concern
   To be a cause of their joy.

May I work tirelessly
   To see others outside the
   Framework of just this life.
   Setting those I hold dear
   Free from a love encumbered
   By unchecked expectations
   And selfish motivations.

Moved by compassion
   May I recognize all beings.
   Kind mothers and fathers suffering
   Within the depths of the cyclic round
   Fueled by their own
   Lack of equanimity.

Wise Ones, hold me close
   As I disentangle pure intent
   From afflicted ways of being.
   So I can be of benefit
   To all embraced as family.

Featured image / Virginia Streit

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