Douglas Colston

Douglas Colston – who finds himself approaching his mid-50s and living at the Sunshine Coast in Australia – has played in Ska bands, picked up university degrees, supported his parents during terminal illnesses, married his love, fathered two great children, had his inheritance embezzled, transitioned into Counselling as a vocation and experienced chronic mental and physical illnesses consequential to workplace harassment. Now, among other things, he is pursuing a PhD. As for his publishing history throughout 2022, in addition to appearing on a few occasions in Impspired, his fiction, nonfiction and poetry has been published in traditional and online anthologies and journals including: POETiCA REViEWOtherwise Engaged Literary and Arts Journal; Written TalesInlandiaThe Graveyard ZineThe AntonymRue ScribeMercury RetrogradeThe Seattle StarRevue {R}évolutionYgdrasil, A Journal of the Poetic ArtsNew Note PoetryRed Door Magazine; and New World Writing.

The Birth of a Sage? Circumstance.

Real change? Defining.

Justice, relationships, good conduct and intent
determining, stabilizing, establishing and resolving
refreshed aims, standard, criteria, integrity and temperance?

Giving birth 
to the propitious, efficacious, favourable and protective.

The noble, venerable, holy or sacred?

Being born.

Backbone, spirit, integrity, drive, ambition and temperance?

The aim, standard and criterion –
bindu (बिंदु [the optimal potential in each emerging moment]).


True, genuine and honest 
intent, good conduct, relationships and justice.


A celebration.

The optimal potential?

Renewal, explanation, action, clarity,
precision, deciding, expressing our essential nature
and sharp demarcation of outer limits.

Fanciful mysticism or grounded philosophy?

“Shiva and Shakti,”
some say,
“are indistinguishable. 
They are one. 
They are the universe. 
Shiva isn’t masculine. 
Shakti isn’t feminine. 
At the core of their mutual penetration, 
the supreme consciousness opens”.

Energy, ability, strength, effort, power and capability 
(शक्ति [śakti]) 
and happiness, welfare, prosperity, bliss and liberation 
(शिव [śivá]) 
are what they are 
and integration of the two 
(for those that see them 
as distinguishable 
[which need not be the case 
at a fundamental level]) 
is typically associated 
with union, harmony, setting things right and attention
(समाधि [sam-ādhi {‘supreme consciousness’}]) – 
there is no need 
to attribute gender to them 
(or for that matter 
to anthropomorphize the concepts 
[they have adequate definitions 
that are fine as they are]).

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