A Selection from the Poetry of Lukman ClarkAbout the Author
Lukman Clark was born in Buffalo, NY and moved to California at the age of 11. He served in the U.S. Navy in Vietnam and Morocco, and has traveled to other countries in Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Europe. Lukman holds a B.A. in Communication Arts from UCSD and an MBA in International Management from UCLA. He has been writing poetry for over forty years. His career spans banking and investments, petroleum services, community development, education and fundraising; currently, he makes his way as a mobile notary. He and his wife, Evelyn, live in Long Beach, California with their two children; his five adult children all live in California. Lukman has been a practicing member of Subud for 38 years.
The Life of Adam
From: The Life of Adam
& Other Poems
Chapter 2: The Seven Days
i. In principio, Deus. Et Deus perficiet.
When the heavens and the earth first were made...
These words are meant to convey the laying
Of the material foundations of
A magnificent cosmic pedestal:
Atomic fires and molecular brews;
Galactic oceans filled with solar fleets;
Light and darkness in eternal embrace.
ii. Such was the first day, if such a time may be so assigned.
And let earth bring forth grass, serving its seed
For yield of future generations in
A perpetual round of greening life.
In perfect physics, matter is conserved,
Exchanging one face for visage newer;
Should vegetative forces be granted
Station less than material servants?
iii. Such was day two, to further the conceit.
Next, let the waters writhe and squirm, the air
Whip and dart, and the continents teem with
Beasts that burrow, climb, run and go a-wild,
Excelling in the slaughter of plants, as
Well the devouring of each the other.
In rampant carnality, flesh and blood
Shall be served while also giving service.
iv. So was the third mystery said and done.
And God said, "Let us begin man's making" --
Balancing them on two legs and weaker
By weight than most every animal;
Yet, with hearts tuned wiser and minds greater,
So that they too might have their place in life.
No clock was given their reproduction,
As a sign of God's Mercy and Wisdom.
v. The human life force thus crowned those lower.
Four days signifying four folios:
Each a distinct opus in its own right;
With characteristic space-times, life spans
In each having appropriate meter
Marking the cadence of sundry creatures
Alive to their own worlds, and seemingly
Senseless, like empty words, to those above.
vi. Nevertheless, each world intersects all;
So, it must be noted there that human
Hearts and minds are open doors to entry
And domination by many creatures,
Because all aspire to return to God.
The unsuspecting humanoid therefore
May have not only lice or rank fungus,
But be host to myriad veiled beings
vii. Who find in their human home a heaven.
Following the fourth issue came three more
Vibrations, each finer than those prior:
The first alike water, but not water;
Succeeded by two worlds of air and light,
But not of air or light as we know them.
That fifth band however, mystic hamza,
Is my home of True Human consciousness.
viii. All praise belongs to the Lord of the Worlds!
Chapter 3: The Birth of Adam
i. From a drop of sperm
In a place of rest
Held fast to her wall,
ii. I knew of my own
Conception. They called,
Invoking the One,
iii. With the thirst upon
My father, the way
Opened wide for my
iv. Commanded descent.
v. Within her dark womb
This body gathered
The strength of the world:
vi. From a clot of blood
To a fetus lump;
Then to bones, clothed in flesh --
vii. My form perfected
In harmony with
the gravid season.
viii. Blessed be Allah!
ix. But I grew fearful
As my time approached,
Aware of troubles
x. To befall me yet
In the world of flesh;
My spirit cried out:
xi. Adonai! Forsake
Me not! Restore me
To my rightful realm!
xii. The birth pains began.
xiii. My good madam sang
Loudly in labor,
Sighing in between;
xiv. I fought to tarry
Until an envoy
Dressed in brilliant light
xv. Appeared to calm me
And bid me recall
The promise I'd made
xvi. To Messenger be.
xvii. My mother he took
When the birth was done,
Her mission complete;
xviii. I howled at my loss
Her body's carnal heat;
xix. And when they entered
The birthing hut -- Lo!
I spoke my name to
xx. All there: Adama!
From: The Life of Adam & Other Poems
by Lukman Clark © 2004