Spirituality Past, Present and Future


Why are my thoughts drawn so much to the past
where pleasure and pain of remembering doth last?
How is it I struggle to ponder the Now
where life is most vivid but wrinkles my brow
in confusion and wondering just why there is haste
that moves days so swiftly — and they have no taste?
The future is also approaching with speed,
with oblivion’s grave and the thing I must heed.
So into the past I find anchor to slow
the pace of the march played by Now’s singing bow.
The music remembers the living while young
and vibrates the harp from which thinking hath sprung.
A time that was strengthened by youth in its age
of vigor and wishing outside of the cage
that aging doth bring with its ups and its downs,
its joys and its pleasures with smilings and frowns.
Experience teaches a spiritual tune
that prompts us to seek from the holiest rune
a whisper of God in our mid-life-tuned ear
that something else needed is coming quite near.

© 2000 Arthur Ruger

Arguments and Illness

Is what made me ill what afflicted you too?
Have you been where I’ve been, do you do what I do?
Is all illness a blight with but one common source
and the consequence meted to all in its course?
Does affliction with symptoms reflecting dis-ease
and the payment of pain and discomfort to tease

come upon us in ways quite the same unto all
with a sense that the sickness is blind in its fall?
Illness doth strike in dis-similar ways
tho the same by its label, it’s impact quite plays
different tunes in each person whose lives aren’t the same,
who’s choices are moves in life’s ongoing game.

Disagreement is sickness that’s blind in its prime
like disease, lack of harmony lives for a time
between souls in dispute who do struggle to win
what’s perceived as a victory though small as a pin.
We will learn by our feelings when we disagree
and find understanding to greater degree

in knowing our opposites, how we compare
when agreement is wanting or even quite rare.
If I know where you stand and the place is amiss
in my own set of values, your thoughts are not bliss.
They’re in contrast and emphasize clearly a split
in our thinking, reflecting that all does not fit

in a tidy container where values are set
in a limit of rightness or wrongness, but let
Mother Wisdom come forth in her powerful gown
of perception that differences don’t mean we drown
in a sea of our discord where winning is king
but where learning brings harmony, living and being.

© 2000 Arthur Ruger

Wise Eyes


Middle Tennessee Walking Trail

The wise move with confidence, led by their eyes,

while the fool uses rashness, false courage and tries

to walk in the dark looking only toward

that which his desire agrees to afford.

He knows there are pitfalls he surely must miss

for if he does not he can blame with a hiss

the Maker of Trails with whom fault surely lies

in thinking all walkers will have open eyes.


© 2000 Arthur Ruger


Ok Ok kiss and make up

Belonging to life is not yours to decide,
to deny you belong deny’s where you reside.
As the river and sea are both separate yet one,
all of life is within you — that’s how it was done.
The here and the now is just where you reside,
a part of totality — timeless inside.

Yesterday’s slave is unable to grow
but tomorrow’s free man is the one we should know.
Claim back to yourself all the portions that be
made from experience to portray all you see,
that leads to the knowing of earth as it is
as one with your being — not hers and not his.

Living and dying are one and the same;
one comes in then goes out as on plays the game;
a continuous round where the soul does expand
to growth and exploring to then understand
that moments are moments which leave and return,
for timely is timelessness making us yearn
to find with each other to whom we belong
and learning is trying without right or wrong.

Experience is primary and stands as the goal
to live life with power accepting the role
designed with specifically just you in mind
so God in entirety is what you will find.
The life and the death are but one and the same
as the sea is the river from whence we all came.

© Arthur Ruger, 2000

America Values

Chesterfield Winter

America values humility, 
anyone “to big for their britches” gets sentenced to rebuke
whenever wiser majorities assert. 
Sharks are not at liberty
to rip up minnows 
no matter great teeth. 

America values church, 
and places for remembering
God, not demigods
nor demagogues 
nor excommunication
for political disagreement. 

America values patriotism, 
dissent and participation.
America repudiates jingoism
does not take for granted real support for troops,
demands that presidents share responsibility
repudiates slaughter and torture of innocents.

© Arthur Ruger 2007

At Play With Life

Seven Years Old

Me and my brother: Cowboy Bob and the Rustler

The soul knows its secrets, the body does too.
With an infinite wisdom do both speak to you.
Listen inside, hear life whisper its plan
where to play – and play well – is one purpose in man.

Are not playing and working both one and the same?
Is not testing one’s thoughts a rule to the game?
Challenges question the game into play.
With reason and passion you choose where to lay

a piece from your thinking created within
to add to your portrait of playing to win.
To play is to work with a pleasure to find,
and working is playing with treasure in mind.

© Arthur Ruger, 2000


To give with pain brings its own reward
for virtue seems won when the giving is hard.
A baptism cult-like that glory’s the pain,
pretending to goodness, but virtue will stain
and baptize with fire til a pride takes the place
where virtue once dwelt but leaves only a trace.
Find someone who gives yet does not feel a pain
who seeks not self-virtue as purchased like gain,
but gives of his wealth without virtue in mind
but for goodness, from goodness — with no debt to bind.

Arthur Ruger © 2000