The Marching Band

Where is my marching band?
I thought there would be a marching band for me.
One day, a parade all for me.
In my honour.

So where is my marching band?
I thought it would come, eventually.
I wait, I’ve waited.
All my life.

A little boy waiting, a grown man waiting.
Waiting to be seen, waiting for my greatness to be spoken of.
Waiting for my specialness to be made special.
By you, and you and you.

Send me my matching band.
Come and line the streets deeply to see me.
Applaud and cheer as I royally go by.
Only then will I have made it.

I wanted be the one they came to see, to hear my wisdom, my words.
But I never made it.
I never became a Jesus figure, a Buddha, a Jesus-Buddha.
Why not be both, together?

Yet am I already a Jesus-Buddha?
Are you?
Are they within me?
Are they within you?

I am an insignificant speck, nothing at all.
And yet I am the whole world, everything.
Just as you are.
Without me in the world, without you, there would be something missing.

The world, existence itself, cannot be without you, without me.
But when I am gone, I won’t be missed, not by existence.
Then there will be nothing missing, just as nothing is missing now.
Existence will continue as always, where nothing is missing, forever.

One day the time will come when you will be the nothing that isn’t missed.
Yet for now, like me, you are everything.
You are special, you are sacred.
And yet just like me, you are also normally ordinary.
Just one more life.

You are everything, you are all there is.
And you’re also nothing at all.
Is your insignificance, a speck, less than a speck, in time and space, acceptable?
Is your greatness too much?

Can you stand being the ordinary little speck that is you?
Can I stand it because it is me?
I want to be The One and only that.
And yet, already, I am both The One and little ordinary me.
As you are.

So here I stand.
Waiting for my marching band.
In both my ordinariness and my specialness.
Just like you.

My painful history and my stress comes with me.
My joyous life, my gratitude, and the everlasting peace within comes along too.
But I carry my stuff around with me.
My failure, my not good enough, my “I’m not there yet.”
But deeper, I sense my sacredness, my holiness, my significance.
The world is not enough, and it is too much.

Yet, in this moment, where is all the pain and suffering that was, is, mine?
All that stress, all my troubles, those negative feelings, all those problems of life.
Where are they now?
Where in this moment is it, my pain and suffering, where?
Held in my body and thought about in my head.

Yet something deeper remains untouched by it all, a bombproof shelter.
A sanctuary.
A place of absolute safety and enduring peace.
I sense the connectedness with the indestructible awareness that I am.
And I know it has never left me, and never will.
Somehow I know that I am that, and that is me.

I am the man that waited for the matching band.
It never came, and I continued to be.
It came, and I continued to be.
Awareness has no preference or opinion about the matching band.
And if it comes, it will go.

Right now, I love the marching band that never was and never came.
The marching band that never was separates me.
My deepest wants and desires separated
From the unwanting, unconditional awareness that I am.
And I see they are one and the same.

My desire to be the enlightened one.
To be known and revered.
Is allowed and accepted.
I see that I am all of it.

I am the marching band that never came.
The marching band is my wanting, my desire to be special, manifesting into my life.
Awareness allows my desires and wants to be just what they are.
This is neither right nor wrong.

Wants and desires are allowed to be just what they are: wants and desires.
Wants and desires are allowed.
For they are already here, they have already arrived.
The “me” that wants something wants the marching band.
The awareness that I am doesn’t even think about it, it can’t.

The marching band has gone, it was never here.
What am I left with?
Only everything that is occurring now, in this very moment.
It’s almost too much, and not quite enough.
It is everything, it is all there is.

So there is only this.
This experience, in this moment, right now.
That is all there is, it is everything.
So as I let go of my wait for my marching band,
I am left with my ordinariness, in this ordinary moment, in an ordinary space.

War and Peace

Boy with peace banner riding bike - Poems by Mike Larcombe

Peace leads to peace.
War leads to war.
Peace does not lead to war.
And war can never lead to peace.
More war leads to more war.

My war, my peace.
It’s mine, all mine.
I find I’m at war, and sometimes, I didn’t know.
I fight them, I fight back.
They won’t stop or change.

I have to fight them every step of the way.
Or they will walk all over me.
They are fighting me every step of the way.
It’s their fault because they are screwed up and bitter.

It’s not me, I want to say.
It’s them, it’s them, it’s them.
Oh, screw it.
It’s me, it’s me, it’s me.

It’s my war leading to more war.
They won’t stop.
I won’t stop because they won’t stop.
How can they stop when I won’t stop?
Someone has to stop.

I’m waiting for the day when my war stops their war.
And brings me peace.
But when they have been defeated, will they be at peace?
Will I, in my victory?
Will my war ever bring me peace?

Will my war bring them peace?
Will their wounds be healed?
Or will their hearts beat with pain and anger?
Full of war-filled rage?

I wait for their war to return to me.
And then I can bring more war, my war to them.
War leads to more war.
Again and again.

I want it to stop.
I want them to stop.
I want them to bring their peace to me.
Only then will I bring my peace to them.
Their peace will lead to my peace.

So I wait for peace.
I wait for them to bring it to me.
To show me that they have changed.
Whilst I wait in readiness for more war.

The war began in me.
In my reactions, my outrage.
My counterattacks.
My “they started it.”

The war in me lives in me.
My reasons for war are justified.
By me.
And those I convince of my righteousness.

So can I find the peace in me?
Can I be at peace?
And can I bring my peace to their war?
Will my peace stop their war with me?

I come in peace.
And you can meet my peace with your peace.
Or you can go to war.
With me.

Where can you go, when you fight my peace?
When I find peace and you fight peace.
Do I let you kill me, destroy me?
Do I receive your vengeful violence, in peace?
Do I take all that you do to me, in peace?

Am I willing to die in peace, for peace?
I have to be.
The alternative is to ready myself for war, more war.
Over and over again.
But I want peace.
So now I choose it.

I offer you peace.
You are free to choose war.
Do I want peace so much that I am ready to die for it?
To die in peace?

My peace is not conditional on you.
Not on what you decide.
Nor do I say, “Take my peace, or else there will be war.”
But neither do I offer unconditional surrender.

I will still speak my truth.
And stand up for myself, and for them, and even for you.
And I will do so not by threatening more war.
But in the name of peace.

Am I ready to die for peace?
Whilst leaving you free to go to war, with me?
When you decide to kill me, if you do that to me,
You will leave me free to die in peace.

For that is what I want.
My epitaph: “He died in his peace.”
I am home.

image 1: blur background of marching band via Shutterstock; image 2: Boy aviator child via Shutterstock