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Chapter 3: Scrapbooks and Shredded Hearts (Honest Adolph Volume III)

Chapter 3: Scrapbooks and Shredded Hearts (Honest Adolph Volume III)

So here we are again with Deborah Willow!

Deborah meditates upon the beautiful poetry of Adolph Adams.

This poem, attributed here to Adolph, was previously published on the blog of Quaker Universalist.

The poem can be found, in context, in my beautiful poetry collection: The Braying Angel.  

Deborah Willow was now free from the strains and worries of her career as a rising star in the Democratic Party. She was also not badly off for money; not at all, thanks to her uncles in Iraq, who had been shrewd enough to not put all their eggs in one basket. ‘Big Solar’ had yet to reach the heights of ‘Big Oil,’ but it certainly was far from a senseless investment.

A book of poems.

Written by Adolph Adams.

Many years ago.

But Saul must have had something to do with it too.

He generally did!

Deborah ran her fingers softly over the immaculately illustrated indie volume.

‘Indie books for Indie Spirits,’ was what Adolph had suggested as the slogan for a new publishing project of his.

But Saul, as level-headed and prudent (in his way!) as he was irritable and highly-strung, had warned Adolph off of this risky venture.

And something of Adolph Adams, as he many years later recounted to Deborah Willow, had died, with the death of this little project.


The Jester’s Net I Gave Me

What if I told you ‘Brahman’ was not a mere ideal

A coercive superstitious worship of unity

As the absolute end-of-all?

What if I told you ‘Brahman’ was the encounter

Between the finite and the (in/)finite

Between the severed and the whole?

What if I told you ‘Brahman’ was where we meet

And not where we end?

What if I told you Brahman does not exist Outside of you

Nor within you?

What if I told you

Neither forgiveness Nor non-forgiveness

Are the end

But rather the boatframes

That carry you

To the shore of encounter?

What if I told you

You are neither a good person

Nor an evil person

But you are amid the endless play

Of both?

What if I told you

The play of Brahman

And the Quranic injunction


Were precisely the same wisdom

And yet (im/precisely) different?

What if I told you

That Jesus was only THE SON OF GOD

Precisely because he was crucified

The one and only Father Sought eternally?

And what if I told you

The Son of God was the greatest ‘atheist’ Of all?

What if I told you God warned Moses


What if I told you

When Confucius begged assistance of Heaven

He was asking Heaven to help him help himself?

What if I told you To ‘comprehend’ is not make a

Bald Trite Factual arrow wound Murmuring


What if I told you


Was not at all

For the end of these times

But for the here-and-now?

What if I told you

The everlasting love you seek

Is neither inside yourself

Nor outside it

But in all those silent fleeting spaces

In between?

What if I told you

Everlasting does not mean all time

But merely neither of time

Nor not of time?

What if I told you

You are neither guilty or innocent

But that you are in them

But not of them?

What if I told you

Every day God crucifies himself for hurting you?

What if I told you

Everyday Allah lets the humblest of his servants stone him

And tender

Smiles through tears unwelcomed?

What if I told you

Every day Buddha weepingly confesses his guilt

To the demons in hell?

What if I told you Brahman does all these deeds

Not for his own sake

But for yours?

What if I told you

You cannot inflict on yourself

Any of these torments

But that you can nevertheless know

That not one smile you have gifted to another

Shall be ever taken from them?

What if I told you

When you senselessly crucified yourself

For your faults in love

There was a voice from your morning

Calling to you


What if I told you

The unity of Brahman is not a denial

Of alienation

Of despair

Of grief

Of remorse

Of sadness

Of sorrow

Of tragedy?

What if I told you

There is no Brahman inside

Nor outside

Of you

But that when you are ready

You will be taken

By the hand

And led at last

Where you always were afraid to go?

What if I told you

The place

Where there is no fear

And the place

Where fear lurks in the shadows

Are two names

For the self-same house of Being?

What if I told you

The lies you told yourself

Were truths

And that they were also falsehoods

But they could never

And will never be


What if I told you

You were loved

And you were love

And this love will remain with you

To the end of your days

And no one will ever

Take it away from you

Nor from your love

And not even you

Have the power

To ever accomplish such a deprivation?

What if I told you

The love you have given

And the love you have been given

Will last longer

Than all the generations of this earth

Because the Book of Time

Never rubs out

What she has

First inscribed?

What if I told you The Poet of Memory

Never forgets

For even if His poems were to forget

He herself

Shall not ever

Let she himself


Because the Book of Time Never rubs out

What he has First inscribed?

What if I told you The Poetess of Memory

Never forgets

For even if Her poems were to forget

She herself

Shall not ever let herself forget?


The doorbell rings.

Can it really be Adolph Adams at last?

Willow falls into a dreamy muse.

And so the song continues.


What if I told you

This love was

Neither real nor unreal

Neither authentic nor inauthentic

Neither beginningless nor beginning

Neither endless nor ending

Neither poison nor cure

Neither life nor death

This nor that Here nor there

Speaking nor silence?

Brahman does not lie

Nor does Brahman tell the truth

But please do me the courtesy

To whisper unto another

Gently, gently

And loving close

Beyond all hope of love

O beloved one

What do you know?


Honest Adolph is available from Amazon, iBooks, Nook, Kobo, and Google Play.

The second volume has recently been released. Feel free to snap up volumes one and two; the third and final one will be along soon.

Love to know what you think of them.

Feel free to write an objective review, or to email the author:

You can even drop a comment or two below to let us know your thoughts on this chapter, or on the book more broadly!


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