Cut it off

Dearly Beloved,
Grace and Peace to you.
         If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off;
         it is better for you to enter life maimed
         than to have two hands and to go to hell,
         to the unquenchable fire.

                  —Mark 9.43

What is this hand in me, hanging on,
grabbing for what I do not need?

The clinging hand, white knuckled, fretting,
leads me and gets stuck in narrow places.

Grasping, be done. That yearning,
die in me. That whole hand, cut it off. Let it go.

The hand to possess, the foot to be elsewhere,
the eye to colonize, let them go. I am already myself.

Away with longing forever to be otherwise.
Better to enter life—yes, come in, come all the way in—

than stay in the grave the hand holds tight,
the unquenchable fire of not being enough.

Bend my wanting of trinkets, God. Give me thirst
for what is poured into me.

Unable to add to my infinite life,
I will only be this, alive.

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light

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write to me at unfoldinglight(at)

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