Snail Mail Scribble for Srimatiji

by Mark Chmiel

“My deep dream is to be
An invisible bodhisattva

No web-site with bells and whistles
No 2,000 friends on Facebook

No acclaim
Fame or melodrama

No awards
No tributes

But with the Jedi power to disappear
For the ego to disappear that is

(Even for 14 seconds
Or less)

A bodhisattva made up
Of non-bodhisattva elements–

Mustard, milk crates, Carmex,
Hill Street Blues, cracked sidewalks, Beverly Hills Cop

A satyagrahi with 20/20 spiritual vision
The cashier hasn’t a clue who intervened in the nick of time

The best friend of stray dogs
The  listener to the loneliest people on the planet

The accompanier of alienated residents
And resident aliens

The ennobler of all social workers
Bereft even of a memory of self-care

The flesh and blood answer to the one who sings
‘Show me the meaning of the word!’

(Gravitating to the Gloria Gaynors
Who can’t ever believe they’ll survive)

Rider on our equivalent of trains but 4th class
Ever unremarkable

Common as the air
Plain as chapatti

A bodhisattva with compassion for all goofy-eyed groupies
A grandfather you wouldn’t even notice at the corner of Fourth and Fellini

One with the Way
Befriender of the Flow

Who doesn’t disparage a single soul
For who knows what nightmare she’s living out

A bodhisattva unfazed
By the tornado there on the horizon

A beginner bodhisattva
Who only writes down this deep dream

For Srimatjii who is so far away
And to himself as a reminder

Gaté, gaté,
Paragaté,

Parasamgaté
Bodhi, Svaha!”

from work-in-progress, Our Heroic and Ceaseless 24/7 Struggle against Tsuris