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  • Lama Jigme Gyatso

Like a Cadre of Stormtroopers - a brief fiction



They came for me,

the drug lord’s goons,

like a cadre of stormtroopers;


they frog-marched me,

and dragged me,

and all around manhandled me…


up the stairs

through the doorway

of the ramshackle tenement


to the suite occupied

by the drug lord.


She had a fierce beauty

and a tall Afro

that reminded me

of my childhood in the ’70s.


What kind of a life

had shaped her

into the fierce leader

she had become?


At first she peppered me

with questions,

rapid fire.


I did my best

to be a proper lama

and not answer questions

directly…


for doing so

is a very good way

to give away

far too much power.


I have noticed

there are those who ask questions

in search of information...


and others who ask questions

in an effort to assert dominance.


She replied,

If you’d been raised

as I’ve been raised

you too would choose dominance


how else

could I take care of my mother

how else

could I take care of my children


how else

could I maintain my territory ?”


Valid questions

one and all

but it has been observed

by those far wiser than myself…


that the labels

by which we attempt

to define ourselves:


such as

daughter, and mother, and drug lord…


could become shackles

that make of us

a prisoner.


Freedom comes

NOT from trying

to maintain an identity…


NOR from striving

to accomplish a goal

no matter how worthwhile

it might be…


but rather

freedom comes

from living in a place

of centered spontaneity


that we might flow

in harmony

with the universe…


and perhaps create chain reactions

like dominoes

falling into other dominoes


that might influence the world

in a positive way.” I explained.


That’s a whole lot a maybes

coming from an oddly dressed man

with a great big nose!

she explained.


And then continued,

How can I be certain

that it is safe

to give up these roles…


of daughter,

and mother,

and crime boss?


I playfully elaborated,

You cannot be certain.

But here’s the trick,

here’s the secret


there are NO certitudes,

just the illusions of certitudes,

promises that we chase after,

like a puppy after a butterfly…


or like a fool

chasing after a balloon,

right off the precipice,

right off the cliff.


A life could be squandered

in the pursuit of certitudes.


And peace is only found

when we grow comfortable

before the towering monolith

of all that we do NOT know.”


She nodded her head,

and spared my life.


This was inspired

by a scene in “Hannibal,”

the sequel

to “Silence of the Lambs.”


Let us conclude

with a simple

call to action


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These spiritual poems are also available on

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