AN ORDINARY PRAYER by Rick Davis – Issue #3




As I relax
In this oversized
In my favorite coffee house,
Relaxing jazz
Soothing from
Tiny speakers
High on the walls
Transport me
To mystical realms.

How my body
Lies to me
Telling me
That my Loving soul
Is born of dust –

And is built
On sky-rises
Of hope,

But I am
Moving beyond
This illusion —

Trampling wet grass
Without leaving
My chair.

I sense
You are here –

You who is
Our Tree of Life —

A pulsating living

Causing my body
To tingle
And loosen
The hold
Of my ego,

So that I see
That you dwell
Wherever I
Let You.

When I run
From You

I run from

You keep
Whispering to me
That I am never alone.


As I glide
On a Grover Washington, Jr.
Saxophone solo

You show me
That which consumes
My imagination
And thought

Will paint
My life
And character.

It is almost
To understand
That this chair,
This music,
And the skirmishing
Street outside

Are all
Created by Your Mind.

What I worship,
I am becoming.

But thankfully
You give me
Balance from my
Lofty thoughts

And provide
For me

So that every night
I can rejoice
In the shelter
Of home
And my addiction
To National Public radio:

These are the simple
Spaces that I find You,

Or when I throw
A five dollar
Bill on a movie theatre floor

So that someone –
Maybe an usher,
Or fellow traveler
Might find a nice surprise.

I learned well
From my grandmother
Who would leave
Quarters in pay phones
Just to make
Someone’s life
A little easier.

She was a true Soul
And her grace
Smiles on me

As I notice
The gaze
Of lovers,
The smile of a friend,
And the beauty
Of summer’s
Lush green world.

I sense
The presence
Of my grandmother’s love
As near to me
As is my own breadth —

Now slowing
As I am
Entering the Unity
Of all of Creation.

My soul rises
In loving prayer.

God, how I wish
That I could
Praise you
In every second.

You uphold me.

So sitting
In this peaceful space

I swim bravely
Into loving-kindness.

I do this
For myself,
For others,
But especially for You.


I encounter,
Sipping coffee,
A clear
Quiet voice

That embraces
My heart
And leads me
To look inside
For answered prayers.

I am (you have showed me)
A part of
Divine Creation.

Love grants me
Purpose and meaning
To my journey.

I have just gotten up
And bought
A “street person”
The best meal
That I can afford —

Because you guide
Me to do this.

You explain to me
That Love
Is the fruit
Of prayer.

So sitting serenely
With pen in hand
I gather flowers
Of a thousand colors

And accept
My Joy.
In this quiet
Little spot
I sit warmly,

Dancing in the
Ecstasy of Creation.
Your Spirit
Blows through
My being.

You are
The spaces
Between trees
And the color and scent
Of lavender.


In the vortex
Of my growth

Please walk with me.
Be with me.
Please take my
Empty hand.

Thank you
For letting me see
That as the
Young lovers
Across the room
Tenderly kiss

That one and one
Are three.

When I left
Your Church
This morning
A man stopped
Me from my
Typically fragmented
And hugged me –

It sent shivers
Through my body,

Because I saw,
Once again
That one and one
Are three.

I turn towards You
Grateful that You
Provide these kind

And for letting
Me know
As they unfold

That I am resting
Inside You.

God please
Hold my heart
So that it becomes
A stranger
In my mist.

Without even
Getting up
I see gleaming
Jewels of dew.

Your Light
Cracks my heart

We are One.

I can never
From You.

I can only
Thank you
Dearest God,

Knowing that
It is never
Quite enough.


Never forgetting You
Is most precious.

You are always near —

In the sun,
And waving grass.

You are
The Streaming
White clouds
That I watch
With awe
Through this
Thick plated
Glass window.

I am truly sorry
That as hard
As I try

I don’t really
Meet you
Every day.

I don’t always
Feel my daily prayers,

But you hold
My Shabbat candles.

You touch my soul
With setting suns,
And moon-filled nights,
And calm
My darkness.

As I get up
And wait for
The rickety
Milwaukee Avenue bus
That swings into view,

I offer
A simple prayer –
To Whom it May Concern:
You answer: I Am.


On the crowded bus
I give up my seat
And stand.

Your silence
Guides my simple songs
Through darkening dust.

Morning and night stars
Sing of my
Love for You.

As the bus
Crawls and weaves,
My soul intones
Your Psalms.

Birds chirp
Your Holiness.

You help me
And guide me
Beyond this bus
Over the terrible
Of my
Intellectual thoughts.

I see,
With your smiling

That so many
Of my beliefs
Are fiction.
Still, you remain near
So that I enjoy
Telling you
Of the wildflowers
That I love to small.

I thank You
For the simplicity
Of this afternoon.


The bus ride
Is never ending
In dense traffic

But You have
Taught me to

Loose fear
As You lift my soul
High beyond
The body.

When my words
Touch paper,
Writing while
Standing on this

Your angels sing.
I feel the Peace
Of sky.

Birth is always
With every second
That passes

So that I cannot
Fear death, anymore.

Death will merely
Be home.

The people
On the bus
Crowd and shove
So that I am
To the rear,

Yet I can hardly
Bare my blessings —

You who
Took me from
Being a beaten
Lonely little boy

And called me.

There is no grass,
There are no trees
On this hot
Over-heated bus

And yet You
Whisper, again,
As the instinct
Of nature.

Prayer is a
Life with You.

As You hand
Me your lantern,

There is no longer
A need for fear
And darkness.

You bless me

In teaching me
How to live.
You have showed me
That when
A lonely soul
Begs for food

That happiness
Is buying
Anguished eyes
The best food
That I can give,

Leaving little money
For my own food

So that I might
Just a little glimpse
Of Your Universe
That you
Continually nourish.




Rick Davis lives in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois, USA., with his wife.  He is a graduate of Northeastern Illinois University, and has completed graduate work at several schools.  He has worked in market research, and in several customer service positions.



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