The Gods Need Our Light
to Grant Our Wishes

After learning that is and ish
originally meant light, I was surprised
to discover so many gods had light
in their name— Isis and Osiris,
Ishtar, Ishvara, Vishnu, Krishna,
Adonis and Christ. I compiled a list—
bliss, existence, glisten, vision, wisdom,
and was astonished that our wish comes true
because the word itself is filled with light.
Then why do we need to blow out candles
on our birthday cake when we make a wish?
Ask Tokusan whose candle was blown out!

Do gods need our light to grant our wishes?
Consider it an even exchange—
just as poetry is the bread of angels,
our wishes are wine for gods to drink—
for they can only flourish in the dark
recess of our mind, an inner venture
much like seeds must germinate beneath
the ground— so the gods need our light
carried by the wind to guide our wishes
nourished in the darkness to fruition
so they may ascend upward to the clear
light of day and break out in blossom.

            — Peter Y. Chou
                 Mountain View, 6-6-2010