June 10, 2016 § 17 Comments
Standing before the ocean, I felt the rhythm of the natural world.
The waves relentlessly marched towards shore. Forming their swells, then peaking and crashing. All the movement seemed forward and aggressive.
But I looked again as the waves broke. When the frothy wave reached its furthest purchase, it began its return, gently sliding back to the sea. Back to its source.
Crashing forward, sliding back. Forward, back. Repeated endlessly.
Opposed motion, each existing apart from the other, each dependent on the other. The advancing waves would cease if the retreating water did not return, just as the receding movement could not arise without the crashing wave that gives it birth.
This rhythm, this pattern, recurs across the sweep of our endless natural world. It is in the wind and the tide, the trajectory of the sun, the garden out back. It is embodied in our breath and in the coil of life’s journey.
I often lose this sense of connection and oneness. Falling away, I am lost and adrift.
But when I take and hold this communion, when the truth of this lives in my bones, I feel safe and at peace. As I did this day, surrounded by the natural world and the others I love.
October 5, 2015 § 20 Comments
Perhaps it was the busy, busy schedule of tasks, spooling off into infinity.
But no, that wasn’t it.
Perhaps it was the way that the turbulence of my mind kept spinning yarns of my own unworthiness.
No, not the problem. Not really.
Maybe it wasn’t me at all. It was all the others, the ones who let me down, who failed to give me what I deserved and desired. Their fault.
Seriously? That decrepit excuse again.
So what happened to me? Where did I go?
Not me, not them, not it.
The problem all along is the very idea of “problem.”
Here or there. Strong or weak. Loved or unloved.
What is the problem?
Resistance and struggle. The hopeless desire to somehow be- or to have been- something else, somewhere else, someone else.
Release yourself from the struggle.
And when you can’t, let that go too.
I am here, now. That’s all.
December 3, 2014 § 3 Comments
Precision, the right way.
A slip and it’s ruined.
Why can’t they see?
Whistling water, only for the warming, never for the steeping.
Line them up. Kettle, pot, cup.
Each thing to its function born.
An ordered life.
In equilibrial ruin.
November 3, 2014 § 2 Comments
I read something about this, somewhere.
Thinking it was Jonathan Miller,
Did you ever read a book,
Entranced by the protagonist,
Then go to the movie,
And feel, well, disappointed?
Tracing the territory of his face.
Not quite right.
Not right at all, actually.
Miscast, you think.
Seen through those gauzy appraising eyes.
The actor is too old,
Can’t put your finger on it, exactly.
Men can get by with all that.
What’s happening isn’t about putting
Pierce Brosnan in a Steve McQueen role.
No, it’s something else.
But how are we to see as seen?
We are entranced by the idea
Of that man in the book.
Not some pinned down image,
Or some actor we cast in that role.
It’s the very idea of him.
Step out of the skin box,
look back at Him.
Seeing that idea embodied is the problem.
Always too confined, too small,
Doesn’t matter who they cast.
Not the gravitational center,
Not larger than this so called life.
When you invest a character with all that,
You are bound to be disappointed when
He actually shows up.
Your martini shot coming.
I just thought
That an interesting idea
To throw out.
November 1, 2014 § 3 Comments
Like clattering little children,
Seeking my attention.
Grab and take.
My so-called enemies.
Whining hovering bugs,
Endlessly tagging along.
Remember- don’t care what they think,
Else they’ll have you by the balls.
Handy mantra, don’t you think?
Like the elephant swatting away the fly.
Who’s the big shot in that parable?
Then I see Him.
Scattering the noisy ones.
They carry torches and pitchforks,
He’s got the blade.
Edged beyond sharp.
Not coming to seize what’s mine.
Or to heap me over with foul insult.
He’ll leave that to the suckerfish.
Slick words fall away.
Resolve all shadow and mist.
Cutting me just enough for the others to feed.
Taking his host just to the edge, never quite over.
Isn’t that the way?
My well spent youth in front of that magic box.
Hour upon hour of shuffling mummies, modeling my way.
So demons never show themselves in the mirror, I know.
But why is He there?
The virus beyond the scientist’s ken,
The monster always under the bed,
The beast that will stop swimming only at time’s end.
The enemy I could not hold any closer.
October 31, 2014 § 4 Comments
Sipping tea at the table,
Safe here, warm too.
Stormy damp out there,
Something in those black shadows.
My homeful existence.
God is great, good too.
Take a peek, he says,
Gulp the tea, slide the door.
Feel the fertile maelstrom,
Wind and wet leaves.
Looking back into the hollow lit up box,
Table, mug, silence, light.
Always walled in, or walled out.
If I am here,
He is there.
Slide the door,
Safe from sound.
Have some tea, he says.
It’s merely ruined,
October 28, 2014 § 1 Comment
A row of albums at attention across the shelf.
Automatic paintings of life lived.
Pin that butterfly, a moment in Maroon Bells,
Captured and detained, prisoners of grasping love.
Set pieces, aching in their perfect ruin.
Smile, come on.
No, the sun is in their face.
Oh, that’s a good one.
When mom left, a scavenger hunt.
Faithless scribblings from the distant son,
Knicky knacky detritus,
Even the crumpled tableau of that long dead boy.
All to the dumpster.
Frozen soldiers guarding punctuated images.
Waiting for the ruthless strangers
To render their release.
October 27, 2014 § 12 Comments
Go be busy.
Live in that zone of frantic illusions.
Still you sit.
And still you wait.
Just open the vein, he said.
Until intention strangles her creation.
Mesmerizing mocking cursor.
The pulse of your palsy.
Sitting on the fault line between stillness and surrender.
Hustling the game only one can play.
Performing the crime that no one can abet.
October 25, 2014 § 2 Comments
Soaring above me.
Hurtling down airy corridors.
He sees, as in a sped up movie.
I stand in the field beneath,
Then to perch, imperial.
A hunter’s gaze,
lacerating the flesh.
Who to be,
What to become,
The next move,
As he launches for the climb,
Prelude to the kill,
I take his eyes.
The world now beneath me,
So many small, distant things.
There below, I see him,
Narrow and alone.
Jealous eyes upward.
Prey to his affliction,
father to son.
September 6, 2014 § 15 Comments
Days roll by.
I recall them as busy, sometimes even hectic. Fulfilling responsibilities. Work. Errands. You know, just what we call “life.”
And then I make those moments. Standing in the woods in the early morning, in wonder at the misty rays of light piercing through. Tasting a cup of tea. Noticing again the graceful way she moves.
All else just being busy. Dodging and weaving. Perhaps afraid to live. Easier to keep plugging, I imagine.
But the choice is a matter of life and death.
Moment by moment.