Monday, October 17, 2016

Into Light - Poetry of the Spirit, at Lit Crawl LA - No Ho, Wednesday, Oct 26, 2016 at 7 p.m.

Moonrise Press presents five poets in a special open and free reading during the Lit Crawl 2016 Poetry Festival in North Hollywood, on Wednesday, October 26, 2016, at 7 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. 


The reading will take place at XMA HQ, 5140 Lankershim Blvd., on the right side of Lankershim if going up, below Magnolia, corner of Hartsook. Number 8 on the map:

The reading will include poems from Moonrise Press's anthology Meditations on Divine Names (2012) and Maja Trochimczyk's Into Light: Poems and Incantations (2016). 


The Vanishing Point

At the edge of an infinite ocean
That’s breathing time into space
In the temple of light
Columns shine from within
With warm brightness
That comforts and heals

There are great halls and countless
Mirrors in this brilliant library of ages 
Where you find all books, and all 
Knowledge that was, is, and ever will be

In this temple of light
Where columns shine from within
We rest in the glow of wisdom
And learn who we are —
All one, all together, strands woven
Into an endless, breathing tapestry 
Undulating with life

It is done We walk in
The door’s open

(c) 2016  by Maja Trochimczyk, from Into Light: Poems and Incantations

If all goes well, we'll listen to the nightingale through the reading:




BIOGRAPHIES OF POETS FOR THE LIT CRAWL  OCTOBER 2016


Joe DeCenzo grew up in Los Angeles and majored in theater and English Literature. From 2004-06 he served as the Poet Laureate of Sunland-Tujunga. He produced the Shouting Coyote performing arts festival and was a Department of Cultural Affairs grant recipient. His published works include The Ballad of Alley and Hawk and the Study Guide and Poetry Primer. His poems appeared in Meditations on Divine Names anthology (2012) and other venues. Joe currently serves on the planning committee for the Village Poets of Sunland-Tujunga and as Chair of Poet Laureate Search Committee.

Elsa S. Frausto was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She has lived in the Foothills with her family for over twenty years. She was the coordinator and host for Camelback Readings held at the Sunland-Tujunga Library. Elsa is a member of the Chuparosa Writers, volunteers at the Friends of the Library Bookstore and at the Noise Within Theater (Pasadena) and is poetry editor and translator for the Spanish language literary magazine la-luciernaga.com. Her work has appeared in many local and international publications, among them Porte des Poetes, Speechlessthemagazine, Poem of the Month in Poets at Work, Badlands, Meditations on Divine Names, and anthologies by Poets on Site.


Marlene Hitt was the first Poet Laureate of Sunland Tujunga. She has been a member of the Chupa Rosa Writers of Sunland-Tujunga and the Foothills since its inception in 1985. In addition to poetry chapbooks, anthologies and readings, she has authored a non-fiction book "Sunland-Tujunga, from Village to City". She served at the Bolton Hall Museum in Tujunga as Museum Director and docent and currently is the member of the ST Neighborhood Council. She also co-founded Village Poets in 2010. In addition to her poetry activities, she has served as history writer for the Foothill Leader and the Glendale News Press, the North Valley Reporter, the Voice of the Village newspaper, and other venues. Her most recent book Clocks and Water Drops was published in 2014.


Maja Trochimczyk, PhD, is a Polish-born poet, music historian, photographer, and non-profit director. A former Poet Laureate of Sunland Tujunga, she wrote/edited six books on music (including Frederic Chopin: A Research and Information Guide, Routledge, 2015), and published six  volumes of poetry - Rose Always (2011), Miriam’s Iris (2008) , Slicing the Bread (2014), Into Light (2016) and anthologies Chopin with Cherries (2010) and Meditations on Divine Names (2012). Hundreds of her poems and articles appeared online and in print journals. She serves as Board Secretary of the Polish American Historical Association, and is an author of hundreds of articles, book reviews and poems published in Poland, Canada, U.K., U.S., France, Germany, Sweden, and other countries. As President of Moonrise Press, she is also a publisher of books on poetry, music and Polish culture. She received fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and honors from the Polish government (medal for the promotion of Polish culture), PAHA, and others. 
  


Ambika Talwar is an educator, author and artist, who has written poetry since her teen years. She has authored Creative Resonance: Poetry—Elegant Play, Elegant Change; 4 Stars & 25 Roses; and other chapbooks. Her style is ecstatic making her poetry a “bridge to other worlds.” She is published in Kyoto Journal, Inkwater Ink – vol. 3, Chopin with Cherries, On Divine Names, VIA-Vision in Action, in Poets on Site collections, in St. Julian Press, Tower Journal, and others; has been interviewed by KPFK; has recorded poems for the Pacific Asia Museum. She has also won an award for a short film at a festival in Belgium.  She practices IE: Intuition-Energetics™, a fusion of modalities, sacred geometry and creative principles for wellness and teaches English at a community college. Originally from India, she resides in Los Angeles, California. Sites: goldenmatrixvisions.com and intuition2wellness.com 

Marlene Hitt, Joe DeCenzo, Dorothy Skiles and Maja Trochimczyk
at the first reading from Meditations on Divine Names (2012).



Los Angeles welcomes back Lit Crawl L.A. to the NoHo Arts District on Wednesday, October 26, 2016 from 6pm-Midnight. Restaurants, bars and other hip NoHo venues will host a a FREE evening. Experience literary LA’s incredible array of local reading series and literary organizations all in one evening as you crawl from venue to venue, reading to reading! All events are free–food and drink are not included. Every venue is within a walkable radius from the Metro North Hollywood rail station so Angelenos throughout SoCal can Go Metro to attend this unique literary festival.

Lit Crawl® L.A. is presented by the Los Angeles Literary Foundation and is a project of the Litquake Foundation. San Francisco’s Litquake literary festival runs October 7-15, 2016, with affiliated Lit Crawls in San Francisco, New York, Austin, Seattle, Iowa City, Portland, Denver, Chicago, Cheltenham, Boston, and Wellington, New Zealand, with more cities in the works. Lit Crawl® L.A. is made possible in part by a grant from the City of Los Angeles, Department of Cultural Affairs and with the support Community Partners.



Monday, September 26, 2016

First Reading from "The Rainy Bread" at Generations Remember 2016 Conference in Warsaw


The first official reading from The Rainy Bread. Poems from Exile book of poetry by Maja Trochimczyk, published in August 2016, took place on September 19, 2016, in Warsaw, at the Uniwersytet Warszawski's Faculty of Sociology, during an event co-sponsored by the History Meeting House (Dom Spotkan z Historia) and organized by the Kresy Siberia Foundation, an international non-profit headquartered in Australia.


The reading was the first presentation at the Generations Remember 2016 International Conference of descendants and survivors of Soviet deportations of Poles to Siberia, Kazachstan, etc.during and before WWII.  According to scholar and artist Adrian Palka (Coventry University), it was exceptionally well received  and set the tone for the whole day,  being an instance of what Palka called "post-memory" - the second generation of children of survivors internalizing and describing their parents' experiences, as if these experiences were their own.  The reading was bilingual, in Polish and English, but for now, only the English version is available in print.


The book is available from lulu.com, in paperback and eBook formats.  A bilingual English-Polish version with translations and additional poems is in preparation.

The author, Maja Trochimczyk was selected for a radio interview by WNET Radio, representing California, along with architect Barbara Gdowski of Perth, representing Australia, and Stefan Szewczuk, President of Poles in South America organization.

At the Radio WNET Studio, with Stefan Szewczuk, and Barbara Gdowski

With Maciej Czarkowski, who organized the interview for WNET Radio.

The conference itself was well-documented in the media, with news reports, and interviews, including a report by Polish TV Polonia:  http://polonia24.tvp.pl/27038817/sybiracy. Other links to follow.

For a program, speakers and other information about the conference, visit Kresy-Siberia.org website.









Friday, August 19, 2016

"The Rainy Bread: Poems from Exile" ... of Poles Deported to Siberia and Displaced by War


by Maja Trochimczyk. Moonrise Press, August 2016

ISBN 9781945938009, paperback, 64 pages, $10.00
ISBN 9781945938016eBook, $10.00

Moonrise Press announces the publication of “The Rainy Bread: Poems of Exile” by Maja Trochimczyk. This volume includes 30 poems about forgotten stories of Poles living in the Eastern Borderlands of Kresy, who were killed, deported, imprisoned, or oppressed after the invasion of Poland by the Soviet Union on September 17, 1939.  Some of these brief portraits capture the trauma and resilience, ordeals and miraculous survival stories of the author’s immediate family. Her maternal family comes from Baranowicze and the surrounding area near Adam Mickiewicz’s Nowogródek and the mythical lake of Świteź in what is now Belarus. Their experiences of displacement, hunger, cold, and poverty during the war are typical of Polish civilians. 

These fictionalized memories are coupled with depictions of survival of other Poles deported to Siberia, the Arctic Circle, or Kazakhstan; who left the Soviet Union with the Second Corps of the Polish Army under General Władysław Anders; were transported to refugee camps in India or Africa; and ended up in Argentina, Canada, Australia or the U.S. The book is a companion to “Slicing the Bread: Children’s Survival Manual in 25 Poems” (Finishing Line Press, 2014), with which it shares some poems, including vignettes from the author’s childhood in Warsaw, permeated by the strange rhetoric of the Polish People’s Republic, yet still overshadowed by the war.


≡ ABOUT THIS BOOK 

Unwavering in its honesty, The Rainy Bread is a thought-provoking look at a brutal chapter in history: the Soviet occupation of Poland during World War II and the deportations and repressions that took place in the country's Easter Borderlands, known as Kresy. Trochimczyk gives a public face to this history but also reveals the private heart of a family that endures despite horrific loss.  With simple language and stark imagery, these poems create a powerful testimony and bear witness to the hate that destroys, to the truth that restores, and to the poetic vision that honors our common humanity.

Linda Nemec Foster, author of Amber Necklace from Gdańsk (LSU Press), 
winner of the Creative Arts Award from the Polish American Historical Association

Maja Trochimczyk’s poems draw you into a bestial, almost inconceivable history.  Using objects—bread, potatoes, trapdoors, high heels—she guides you through an experience with the madness of World War II and its aftermath when a dictator is judged worse or better by how many fewer millions he has slaughtered. This book needed to be written.  This is a fascinating, tragic, and instructive time in history which should not me neglected. Trochimczyk doesn’t lecture; you are riveted by the power of her poems; their narratives flow from her hands as if a Babcia were still guiding them. And maybe she was. You will remember the taste of this book.

Sharon Chmielarz, author of Love from the Yellowstone Trail




≡ LIST OF POEMS 

PART I DESTINATIONS ≡ 1
1.             What to Carry ≡ 2
2.             Starlight ≡ 3
3.             Charlie, Who Did  Not Cross ≡ 4
4.             Five Countries in Venice ≡ 6
5.             Eyes on the Road ≡ 8
6.             The Baton ≡ 9
7.             Diamonds ≡ 10

PART II THERE AND NOWHERE ≡ 11

             The Odds ≡ 12
              Wołyń ≡ 13
1            Kołyma ≡ 15
              Amu Darya ≡ 16
1            Shambhala ≡ 18
1            Reflection ≡ 20
          A Piece of Good Advice to Stuff in the Hole  in the Wall ≡ 21
             A Pilot in Pakistan ≡ 22
 .           Under African Sky ≡ 23

≡ ≡ ≡ PART III THE HUNGER DAYS ≡ 25

            Kasha ≡ 26
           The Trap Door ≡ 27
            Slicing the Bread ≡ 29
             Peeling the Potatoes ≡ 30

  ≡ ≡ ≡ PART IV THERE AND BACK ≡ 33

2        Of Trains and Tea ≡ 34
          Once Upon a Time in Baranowicze ≡ 35
                    Ciocia Tonia ≡ 37
          Asters ≡ 39
          No Chicken ≡ 41
          The Coat ≡ 43
          Short Legs ≡ 44
                    Standing Guard ≡ 46
          Losing Irena ≡ 47
          Language ≡ 48





  INTRODUCTION 

  • My previous book of war-themed poems, Slicing the Bread (Finishing Line Press, 2014) was prefaced with a rhetorical question: “If I were born in Warsaw, a city that lost 700,000 of its inhabitants, shouldn’t I at least try to remember some of them? The 450,000 Jews and 250,000 non-Jewish Poles died before October 1944, when everyone left in Warsaw after the Uprising was expelled to deportee or labor camps, while the buildings of an empty city were dynamited into a sea of ruins.”  Then, the Soviets came…

  • This chapbook, written for the Kresy-Siberia Conference in Warsaw in September 2016, takes the story further east and around the world as it traces the displacement of deportees, their ordeals and miraculous survival stories. After the war, my parents, Aleksy Trochimczyk (25 September 1927 – 11 May 2001) and Henryka Teresa Trochimczyk, née Wajszczuk (16 December 1929 – 4 July 2013) came from provincial villages and towns in the Easter Borderlands, or Kresy, to study engineering at the Polytechnical University of Warsaw. They met while picking bricks off the ruined streets of Warsaw (“The Coat”). My father’s family was Belarussian, with roots in the Ukraine and beyond; during the war, they were hungry and impoverished, but  stayed on the family farm in Bielewicze, now in Poland. 

  • My mother’s family of Polish gentry and city folk living in Baranowicze and the surrounding area near Adam Mickiewicz’s Nowogródek and the mythical lake of Świteź in what is now Belarus, was particularly affected by the deportations: the families Wajszczuk, Wasiuk, Ignatowicz, Gliński, Hordziejewski…Six poems are based on the memories of grandmothers and great aunts, my mother and father. “Slicing the Bread” documents my Mom’s obsession with saving and hoarding food, due to the years of war-time hunger. “The Trap Door” commemorates my Dad’s family survival in an isolated hamlet of Bielewicze near Gródek Białostocki. It was so close to the forest, it was constantly scoured for food by the “partisans” – but also fed the Germans, and the Soviets when they came. I admired the courage and resilience of my Belorussian Babcia, Nina Trochimczyk, née Niegierysz. 

  • “The Odds” is about my Mom’s uncles, Catholic priests. Father Karol Wajszczuk (1887 –  1942) was a prisoner of the Lublin Castle since April 1940. He was moved to Sachsenhausen and then to Dachau, on December 14, 1940. He died on 28 May 1942 in the Castle Hartheim: in a gas chamber, originally built to exterminate the disabled in the Euthanasia program and later used to kill prisoners from Dachau. His father, Piotr, was the brother of Franciszek, the patriarch of the Wajszczuk-Trochimczyk family branch, and the father of Stanisław Marcin Wajszczuk (1895-1973), my grandfather from the village of Trzebieszów in Podlasie. Father Feliks Wajszczuk (b. 1902 – d. 1973), Karol’s cousin, was in Sachenhausen, then in Dachau since 14 December 1940. He was liberated by Americans on 25 May 1945 and spent the rest of his life in a monastery in France. 

  • In my poem, Karol and Feliks are paired up with another set of brothers, Artur Gold (1897-1943) and Henryk Gold (1902-1977), Jewish composers and musicians from Warsaw.  Henryk survived by joining the musicians of the Second Corps of the Polish Army commanded by General Władysław Anders (1892-1970). Artur died in Treblinka. The group of Jewish musicians included Henryk Wars (Henry Vars, 1902-1977, “The Baton”) and many other survivors.

  • My Grandma and her sisters, my Mom’s maternal aunts, appear in several poems. Babcia Maria Anna Wajszczuk, born Wasiuk (1906-1973) in Baranowicze, wore her head high in the peasant village (“No Chicken”) and taught me the skill of “Peeling the Potatoes.”  

  • Ciocia Tonia, or Antonina Glińska lost her husband to a Soviet bullet, and survived exile to Siberia, to return to Poland in 1954. Alas, her sons did not do as well: the older lost his life, drowning in Yenisey, the younger, indoctrinated in Soviet schools, lost his soul to  a  career  in  economics, the government, and PZPR. 

  • Aunt Antonina is commemorated in “Ciocia Tonia” and her sister, Ciocia Irena, married name de Belina, appears in “Losing Irena.” She was deported with her whole family, and came to America as an orphan, whose path from Siberia through Iran, Switzerland to Chicago and Albuquerque, New Mexico never ceased to amaze me.  

  • Ciocia Jadzia, married name Hordziejewska, was resettled with her noble-born husband, Dominik in the early 1950s. They were sent from their estate near the lake Świteź to a drab settlement house in Gdańsk-Oliwa, emptied of its German inhabitants (who, in turn, were resettled further West). Their portraits are in “Asters.” More details may be found on the family tree, www.wajszczuk.v.pl, compiled by Waldemar Wajszczuk and Barbara Miszta, née Wajszczuk of Trzebieszów.

  • In addition to these rich and varied  reprinted four poems based on my own childhood experiences in Warsaw, the capital of the socialist Polish People’s Republic where I went to school and wondered about the shadow of the war: “Short Legs,” “The Coat,” “Standing Guard,” and “What to Carry.” Even though these poems focus on my native Warsaw, the intergenerational trauma that they express stems from my Mom’s experience escaping from Soviet-occupied Baranowicze back to German-occupied Poland.

  • A sizeable portion of new poems commemorate deportees to Siberia and Central Asia. “Eyes on the Road” is based on an episode in the life of Roma King, author of Footsteps in the Snow: A True Story of One Family's Journey Out of Siberia (2010). Carlos (or Charlie) Stalgis (“Charlie, Who Did Not Cross”) was born in Argentina and his family took the unsuccessful trek to the Polish border from the environs of Baranowicze (“Charlie, Who Did Not Cross”), while my grandparents, Mom, and uncle made it across the river Bug (“Starlight”). 

  • Baranowicze was also where the father of Lucyna Przasnyski had his roots (“Once Upon a Time in Baranowicze”). As a child deportee, Andrzej Dąbrowa took the infernal boat-ride along Amu Darya to the Aral Sea. Zofia Janczur had diamonds hidden in her shoes that saved the life of her whole family. Roma King waited for her Dad to come and get them, and he did (“Eyes on the Road”). 

  • I heard their stories during an event about Sybiracy organized for the Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club in Los Angeles by Dorota Olszewska, herself an heir of Polish deportees to Siberia, repatriated to Szczecin (Stettin). On a sunny afternoon of June 5, 2016, they were joined by other survivors, Zofia Cybulska-Adamowicz, Wiesław Adamowicz and Elżbieta Nowicka in revealing their painful memories of Siberia or Kazakhstan (“On Trains and Tea,” “A Piece of Good Advice…” and “Kasha.”)  The four pathways to California in “Five Countries in Venice” were shared by Carlos Stalgis, Roman Solecki, and Stefan Wiśniowski, the founder of Kresy-Siberia Virtual Museum and the Facebook Group that brought us together. 

  • Another poem, “Under African Sky” emerged from the biography of painter Julian Stanczak (b. 1928) who lost the use of his right hand in a Soviet gulag, and re-invented himself as an artist in the refugee camp in Masindi, Uganda. The “tiger’s eye” I put in his hand is fictional but reflects the main idea of a re-oriented, yet immensely creative life. The Polish American Historical Association gave him theirs Creative Arts Prize in 2014 and thus I was introduced to his sublime and monumental and art. 

  • At the Polish Film Festival in Los Angeles I watched an astounding documentary about Polish pilots training the new Pakistani Air Force. Established in 1947 during the division of India, the Moslem Pakistan needed help in creating its military; a task assisted by about 30 Polish pilots, veterans of the Battle of Britain. Polish Eaglets Over Pakistan (Polskie orlęta na pakistańskim niebie) presented their stories and the two vivacious female pilots particularly impressed me.

  • The suffering of the Polish victims of massacres by Ukrainians in the region of “Wołyń” (Volhynia, Волинь, since 1945 in Soviet Union, since 1991 in the Ukraine) only recently started to attract any attention. It was, and is, a political hot potato, just like the Armenian genocide by the Turks. 
  • The region of Kołyma (Колыма́) partly above the Arctic Circle includes many mines, to which the Polish Home Army soldiers were sentenced through the 1940s and 1950s for continuing to fight a guerilla war against the Soviet occupiers. Known as żołnierze wyklęci (the cursed soldiers), they were remnants of units that counted nearly 80,000 at the end of the war. The last of them, Józef Franczak, was killed in 1963. 

  • I owe a huge debt of gratitude to all the individuals whose stories I transformed into poems. This book is meant to honor their sacrifice and document their resilience and survival. In addition to the members of my extended family, I’m especially grateful to Stefan Wiśniowski, and Sybiracy in California Zofia Cybulska-Adamowicz, Wiesław Adamowicz, Roma King, Zofia Janczur, doktor Bożena Gryglaszewska, Elżbieta Nowicka, Andrzej Dąbrowa, and Dorota Olszewski who encouraged them to share their painful recollections.

  • Sincere thanks is also due to the Finishing Line Press and its team of editors that published the original ten of these thirty poems in Slicing the Bread  in 2014.

  • Finally, I would not be able to finish these poems without the assistance of fellow poets and writers whose comments have been as valuable to me, as is their friendship: Elżbieta Kańska, John Guzłowski, as well as the Westside Women Writers: Millicent Borges Accardi, Lois P. Jones, Georgia Jones-Davis, Susan Rogers, Kathi Stafford, Madeleine Butcher, and Sonya Sabanac. Thank you. 
 ≡ ABOUT THE POET 

Photo by Susan Rogers, 2013

MAJA TROCHIMCZYK, Ph.D., is a poet, music historian, photographer, and non-profit director, born in Poland and living in California. She published six books on music and five volumes of poems: Rose Always - A Court Love Story, Miriam’s Iris, and Slicing the Bread: Children’s Survival Manual in 25 Poems, plus two anthologies, Chopin with Cherries and Meditations on Divine Names that offer “rich poetic material selected and collected with great sensitivity” (Grażyna Kozaczka, Polish Review, 58/4, 2014). Hundreds of her articles and poems appeared in English, Polish, as well as in German, French, Spanish Serbian, and Chinese translations, in such journals as Angel City Review, The Loch Raven Review, Epiphany Magazine, Lily Review, Ekphrasis Journal, Quill and Parchment, Magnapoets, SGVGPQ, The Cosmopolitan Review, The Scream Online, The Original Van Gogh’s Ear Anthology, Lummox Journal, Poetry Magazine, Poezja Dzisiaj, OccuPoetry, as well as anthologies by Poets on Site, Southern California Haiku Study Group, the Altadena Library, and others. 

The Sixth Poet Laureate of Sunland-Tujunga (2010-2012) and the founder of Moonrise Press, Trochimczyk presented her work at over 70 national and international conferences in Poland, France, Germany, Hungary, U.K., Canada, and the U.S. She received fellowships and awards from the American Council of Learned Societies, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, USC, McGill University, MPE Fraternity, the Polish American Historical Association, the City and County of Los Angeles, and Poland’s Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. (www.trochimczyk.net). 






Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Announcing the Publication of "Into Light: Poems and Incantations" by Maja Trochimczyk


This pocket-book-size collection written by Maja Trochimczyk over the past twenty years includes 29 poems and 11 "incantations" that focus on the intertwined spiritual concepts of Light and Love. The poems, initially created within the Catholic mystical tradition of contemplation and adoration of the Divine presence, gradually evolved to encompass a broader scope of spiritual insights, without losing the main focus: reaching out in Love to the One Light, the Source of All. The simple and repetitive meditations and incantations are meant to inspire, uplift, and fill the heart with Light and Love.




At this time, the book is available in paperback and EPUB electronic book formats from lulu.com:

Paperback, pocket-book size, ISBN 978-0-9963981-8-3, 80 pages (xii + 68 pages),  price - $10.00: http://www.lulu.com/shop/maja-trochimczyk/into-light-poems-and-incantations/paperback/product-22804936.html 

EPUB ebook, ISBN 978-0-9963981-9-0,  price - $8.00: http://www.lulu.com/shop/maja-trochimczyk/into-light-poems-and-incantations/ebook/product-22804966.html .




Table of Contents

POEMS 1

A Passage ∻ 2
A Walk in the Canyon ∻ 3
No More ∻ 5
Timelessness ∻ 6
Awakenings ∻ 7
The Bluest ∻ 9
A Subliminal Song ∻ 10
The Gift of Patience ∻ 11
A Promise ∻ 13
The Feast ∻ 14
Of Bliss ∻ 15
Seeing Madonnas … ∻ 16
Rosa Mystica ∻ 17
The Cornerstone of the Soul ∻ 20
How to Cross the Great White ∻ 21
After the Crossing ∻ 23
The Vanishing Point ∻ 24
See How we Dance? ∻ 25
From the Mountains ∻ 27
Convergence ∻ 28
Gloria ∻30
A Perfect Universe ∻ 31
Cosmos ∻ 32
Elijah’s End ∻ 34
In a Magnolia Courtyard ∻ 36
On Squaring the Circle ∻ 37
Repeat After Me ∻ 39
A Rainbow Vision ∻ 41
Meditation on Light ∻ 43

INCANTATIONS 45

Morning Greetings ∻ 46
Our Mother ∻ 47
Breathing Affirmations ∻ 48
On Being a Tree ∻ 50
Being the Sun ∻ 51
Crown Jewels ∻ 52
The Seven Suns ∻ 53
The Divine Path ∻ 60
The Stream ∻ 62
The Shield of Light ∻ 64
The Shield of Love ∻ 65


Introduction

After writing and editing a variety of books on music, dance, and poetry, and publishing poetry in various journals, I decided it is time to do something completely altruistic, without any shadows within, with a clear direction upwards, to the light. I pulled together my “enlightened” poems from the past 20 years and created “incantations” – personal meditations and prayers, designed for quiet reading alone to uplift the soul in the morning, or provide a respite in a busy day.

My fascination with the twin themes of “light” and “love” dates back to my “conversion” period in Poland, when I read the Bible from cover to cover and started collecting all references to these mirrored themes that I could find. I thought of writing a mini-treatise on the topic of Divine Light to celebrate my baptism in 1987 at the age of 30. But somehow, I got too busy with other things and my treatise is now coming to life in an entirely different form.

On my spiritual path, marked by a late start and guided by many unusual visions and revelations (suitably so for a complete sceptic who would not believe in anything, unless personally experienced) I owe a debt of gratitude to many who have led me on the path of Light. First, my Godmother, Sister Elia of the Franciscan Sisters in Warsaw, taught me rigorous “rules of conduct” as a perfect daughter, mother, student, and mystic – especially the Ten Commandments and the Two Commandments of Love.  

Along the way, while making a discovery of a complete new continent of spiritual and religious writings, I read with great interest The Cloud of Unknowing, the writings and biographies of Blessed Hadewijch; Rumi; St. John of the Cross; Father Teilhard de Chardin; two twin souls, Discalced Carmelites Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity (to be Canonized in October 2016); and Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus from Lisieux, and many others, including poets Czeslaw Miłosz and Emily Dickinson. One of the most influential books was Guidelines for Mystical Prayer by English Carmelite, Ruth Burrows. 

In the 2010s in California, I found insight and love in the poetry and friendship of the “Spiritual Quartet” – four women who have taken birds as their totem images while pursuing their own paths into Light, sometimes parallel, sometimes inter-woven. Lois P. Jones (“the Phoenix”), Susan Rogers (“the Hummingbird”) and Ambika Talwar (“the Peacock”) have been faithful companions and guides on my own way into the Awakening. I’m “the Dove” of love, they decided, and so be it. 

The poems and incantations in this volume do not express any particular spirituality or religion, except my own mystical focus on the unknown Source of us all, the Light that draws us near, the Love that keeps us connected and dwells in our hearts. 

Baptized at 30 into the Catholic Church, after a long search for the right path, I’m an usher in my local parish. But I also seek enlightenment where it can be found, so I attend “light-giving” sessions at the Sukyo Mahikari Spiritual Development Centers (with Susan Rogers as my guide) and spiritual healing sessions given by inspired healers, filled with Divine light and grace, Kimberly Meredith and Ambika Talwar. 

Some of my “incantations” feature fragments of Catholic prayers, such as the Shield of St. Patrick, or words borrowed from Kimberly Meredith, or Messages by Archangel Michael channeled by Ronna that I found on YouTube. I also paraphrase ideas and inspirations from the Convoluted Universe books by hypnotherapist Dolores Cannon, The Law of One, the Spiritual Development Course by the Abbotts (Australia), and the Emerald Tablets of Thoth. If there are any others, whose ideas I may have adopted as mine without proper acknowledgement, Love and Light to you all!

There are so many parallels and synchronicities in the mystical traditions. While reading the Prayer to Fukushima Waters, for healing of the environmental damage, written by Dr. Masaru Emoto, you might recognize the sections of the Catholic Mass: “Water, we are sorry” (Mea Culpa), “Water, please forgive us” (Kyrie Eleison), “Water, we thank you” (Eucharist), “Water, we love you” (Communion).  At least, that’s what it seems to me, but I’m a Catholic, converted from scientific atheistic worldview. The “Divine indwelling” described by the Carmelites parallels the discovery of the Adamantine Particles of God, the Spark of Divine Light, or the loving connection to the Source deep within our hearts, contemplated in meditation.

Finding the way to becoming a Child of Light has been the greatest adventure of my life. I leave my reflections to my readers, with the hope that they, too, shall follow their own paths into the Light!


Maja Trochimczyk



On Squaring the Circle

It is a simple square that contains a circle –
four ideas, four words –

— sorry — forgive — thank — love —

No need for explanations,
long winding roads of words
Leading into the arid desert
of heartless intellect, auras
of geometric shapes floating above
your head – a scattered halo
of squares, sharp-edged cubes
prickly triangles, and hexahedrons.

No, not that. Instead let us find
the cornerstone of simplicity –

Sorry – to erase the past

Forgive – to open the path into the future

Thank – to suffuse the way, each moment 
with the velvet softness of gratitude

Love – to find a pearl unlike any other
a jewel of lustrous shine – incomparable, 
dazzling, smooth, pulsating sphere


A dot on the horizon grows
as you, step by step, come closer
until you enter into the shining
palace without rooms
where inside is outside,
the circumference is in the point,
the point in the circumference,

where movement is stillness
and stillness dances within –
traveling to a myriad of planets,
suns, galaxies, with the unheard of
velocity, being everywhere at once

Love everyone — Respect everything

So that’s how you square a circle