Louise Landes Levi

chemo poems and drawings

may 10 – August 3 2012

Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore

The Ecstatic Exchange

Allah dressed them in His own clothes
And he took them in His high protection

Ibn al Husayn al-Sulami

Daniel Moore is a national treasure.
In his early works Dawn Visions & Burnt Heart (City Lights Press) he created a body of visionary work without precedent in the American canon. Down At The Deep End - written more than 50 Years after those classics, is no less remarkable.

of terminal illness –
for the poet & mystic Abdal-Hayy –
is a portal of discovery through which
his life work will be

The book's introduction makes the situation
clear– fr. there, we follow the poet through the litany of the most advanced treatments for his ailment juxtaposed w. the
most heart rendering expression of the
psyche & spirit now
subject to their

I hear nearby
Firing squad bullets

Meant for me

I am elsewhere
All my deeds in a little box
In my heart

Moore is less concerned w. ‘healing’, per se,
than he is w. spiritual release, indeed redemption.
At the same time, a life work of artistry & visionary practice of the Ars Poetica arms him w. the internal power necessary to integrate his pain w. a vision, far beyond both pain & pleasure.
Indeed for the poet, his illness is an invitation
to divine encounter - the ultimate test of
his hard won

is an Ars Moriendi, rare in the 2lst century,
but equally an Ars Vivendi
spontaneous & tender

Patience is the key to this savage sideshow Rimbaud

I must refuse myself
And look for Mercy

Nothing happens
In the instant of our lives and deaths

But this
Sudden awakening.

Certain of these poems
draw fr. the French symbolist tradition & modern
American Zen & ecstatic tradition,
others fr. the high Sufi orders.
Saadi, Hafiz, Rumi
echo through these works, in perfect resonance
however, w. the historic moment in which we live.

I opened the newspaper this
Morning and all the

Type slid off onto my lap

I rearranged it to read
Angels Sighted Over Major Cities

Penguins have sent their
First representatives to the UN

Whale speech decoded and their
Good counsel received

guide to survival
in the post modern era & also
the plaintiff call of a simple man,
who just happens to be a poet & practitioner,
in this case: the Sufism conferred by
Sheikh Habbiya,
of Fez.

For one who knows how can there be any difference between happiness & sadness - That which is in the hidden core of the human heart is from him SADI

I’ve known the author for most of my adult life.
was left as riveting amulet for me
when as a university student in Berkeley, Ca.
I sought something more. Both Moore & I have traveled
a far distance to meet again – never so intimately
as in my sojourn through Down At The Deep End –
his Ars Moriendi-Ars Viviendi in 172 p. w. 16 beautiful illustrations – drawn by the poet, originally in color, but printed b/w with the exception of the cover.

is a death-bed journal
but as Abdal-Hayy is a poet
& noted visionary, it is above all a life journal of poetry –
during the treacherous & effective, gratefully, for the poet,
anti tumor therapy. For Abdal-Hayy, even the exigencies of chemeo serve as invitation indeed as initiation.
Profound meditation & decades of intimate application,
allow him to go beyond the confines & characteristics
ordinarily attributed
to this process.

The introduction to the book
is a testament to his clarity and intention:\

Will you shake your fist from so far away and ‘fight the disease’
which has been granted to you, or will you work to neutralize its ill effects and make peace with it by your soul’s anchoring in holy ground, and praying to that One Alone that your healing method of choice eradicate the disease as efficiently as possible , and as if – why not? - by magic.

Hovering between the domain of so-called life & death, the poet reveals the insight & initiation that
transcends the two & unites them.
But this is not a sectarian text.

Looking for territory to expand
A wild agenda

Gods blessings upon all of us
felt along the knots of
the spine

and will serve
as inspiration – far beyond
the sick bed – to seekers, mystics,
poets of every persuasion.
Abdal-Hayy has arrived
at the gate of

in doing so he invites
his readers-indeed his intimates-
to the dance..

I have had light shed on me


has written for half a century
to fertilize, to inspire & finally, however
gently & w. humor to instruct.
This is sacred writ of
the highest order.

The world is but a road Heaven a roadside inn
True lovers leave them behind
To reach the Beloved

ibn al Husayn al-Sulami

Louise Landes Levi, poet, traveler, translator, & musician.
USA - Played in Daniel Moore's Floating Lotus Opera
Company, then Eastward to India, studied music

in Bombay, National Center for Performing Art,
& private instruction, continued at Conservatory of
Music, Basel, & Al Akbar Khan College of music in San Rafael, California.
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