Love and Ripples

Here's something very true: I've been holding a lot of my writing back in preparation for the launch of Thirsty Camel. The really raw poems. The sexy ones, the vulnerable ones. The real grit of the work. But now that the book has made its way into the world, I don't have to do that any more. Now's the time to share the real-ness of it all with you...

A few years ago, I wrote a poem that found its way into Thirsty Camel. I called the poem "Ripple," and yes, it's about one of the most precious and intimate human experiences of them all. But let's be honest: we all know, even if we think it's best to hide it, that there are glimpses of God inherent in the experience of lovemaking.

Sex and intimacy have the power to be transcendent experiences. To be frank, to me it is remarkably clear that God - or whatever name you'd like to assign to that ubiquitous, Divine force in the Universe that we spend most of our lives pursuing, avoiding, or trying to define - comes on over and sits right in the room when two human beings make love to one another. Maybe the idea feels a little crude to you. God Him-or-Herself, perched on the bedpost while your lover is inside of you, gawking and smiling in almost childlike curiosity, in apparent awe at the whole unfolded scene. Maybe I'm being a little glib here, but let's get real: to what other force might you attribute the incredible power, the supernovic passion, and the inescapable inevitability (literally: we are GOING to make love to one another, no matter what) of the act of human love? (Oh...I forgot to mention that this post isn't best-suited for you evolutionists out there. I'm sure brain function and survival of the species both have something to do with it. Fine. But this is an ecstatic poetry blog. Perhaps I can point you in another direction?)

The ecstatic masters spoke of the Beloved, of being drunk on ecstasy and feeling the power of the Divine in another person. Theirs was a practice more related to seeking experiences of God than achieving a momentary orgasmic release. But I am made to question: is it THAT different for the rest of us? Are we really just chasing after the next quick fix, or is there something more going on for us? In the worst-case scenario, we are all dining night after night in what author Tom Robbins calls "erotic greasy spoons"...but even then, could it be that we are seeking something deeper? Something we could swear we recognize but can't quite put our finger on?

There is a glimpse of God - however obscured by our conditioning, however diluted by our cultural perspectives, however marred by our attachments, our addictions, our clinging, or our sadness - in every act of sharing love with another human being. There is a connection to the Divine each time we surrender, show another person our most vulnerable parts, and allow ourselves to be undressed in both body and mind. And I believe that that glimpse, even if it's so brief that many of us don't notice it at all, causes ripples like a pebble does when dropped into a pond. Those ripples then propagate outwards, reaching from the past into the present as reminders of the holy truth of lovemaking.

For some of us, lovemaking is a favorite way to pray. I want to be clear here and state that ecstatic poetry isn't necessarily about indulgences in flesh or attachment to pleasure. But it surely can help us to understand those glimpses of the Divine, no matter where they're found. Here is my poem called "Ripple." May it give you pause to consider the things that are still rippling throughout your own lives. Perhaps you will see that God is there, perched in a corner of the room and smiling warmly, just waiting for you to notice...






it’s taken me this long to realize

that the act of loving –

the exchange of sacred communion

that singularly honest

act of surrender –



making love is not just one finite series

of moments

over and done with

and discarded

at the end


it is an act of



one night with you

your flesh at my fingertips

your breath in my ear

your quivering voice

gives rise the oldest tales ever told:

no matter what forms these ancient consciousnesses have taken

throughout the epochs

since time eternal

these tales

pouring from your lips

have burned in the hearts of men

since first we woke up in this place

and began to love


and then

at last

the holy explosion

the Universe begins again

between your thighs

right there

in that place where we meet

the birthplace of all worship –

the only churchhouse

that has ever shown me the face of God –

as your body does

what it was born to do

and together

we begin to understand

that miracles are far more commonplace

than we had once



it is these moments, all

they take up residence in my heart

and there they stay


the days that follow

are ghostly dreams

and i’m really nowhere

but right there


with you


© 2015 Brandon Thompson