Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It's Dicey Now

Cats who behave badly

Once again, joining Three Word Wednesday.  Click here for the site: 3WW CCXLVIII

An aircraft jettison switch cover

Thom explains:
"Each week, I post three words. You write something using the words. Then come back and post a link to the contribution with Mr. Linky (but please, link to the exact post, not your blog, by clicking on the exact post title and paste it to Mr. Linky below). As always, there's no hard-and-fast rule that you have to post on Wednesday."

The three words for this last day of November, 2011: Behave; Jettison; Mob.

An Angry Mob

It's Dicey Now

Oh, I just don't know
how I'll get you to behave
in these latter days -
the cover is up,
the jettison switch exposed -
I'm about to dump
all in a clean sweep
and outside the gates the mob
is shouting, pressing
on the shaky fence,
this all because you exposed
the situation.

Written November 30, 2011 10:58 AM

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Love's Tapestry

Love's Tapestry

You've caught the windy
song as it threads past us here.
You rise, hold my light,
my lowering light.

I feel the spacious welcome
in your heart, your eyes
as you rise above.
We shall lift our days toward
the gold flame beyond
the gray sun hanging
low in this odd aged land.

We are now entranced,
woven together
as true as ever we've been
life and life and love.

January 18, 2010 7:23 AM

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Meaning Of Hope

Doorway Into Hope

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul.
And sings the tune
Without the words,
and never stops at all.

Emily Dickinson (1830 - 1886)

"If you know the point of balance, You can settle the details. If you can settle the details, You can stop running around. Your mind will become calm. If your mind becomes calm, You can think in front of a tiger. If you can think in front of a tiger, You will surely succeed." - Mencius

Mencius, most accepted dates: 372 – 289 BCE, was a Chinese philosopher who was arguably the most famous Confucian after Confucius himself. Mencius' interpretation of Confucianism has generally been considered the orthodox version by subsequent Chinese philosophers, especially by the Neo-Confucians of the Song dynasty. Mencius' disciples included a large number of feudal lords, and he was actually more influential than Confucius had been. The Mencius (also spelled Mengzi or Meng-tzu), a book of his conversations with kings of the time, is one of the Four Books that Zhu Xi grouped as the core of orthodox Neo-Confucian thought. In contrast to the sayings of Confucius, which are short and self-contained, The Mencius consists of long dialogues, including arguments, with extensive prose. While Confucius himself did not explicitly focus on the subject of human nature, Mencius asserted the innate goodness of the individual, believing that it was society's influence – its lack of a positive cultivating influence – that caused bad moral character. "He who exerts his mind to the utmost knows his nature" and "the way of learning is none other than finding the lost mind".

Christopher writes:

The Meaning Of Hope

I shall choose my hope
like I choose my gait after
falling like I have.
There is no native
walk left in me after all.
The impact shook me down.
I've been spun and slammed
and knocked upside my old head
to the point I call
uncle in this game
yet I shall choose to have hope
and I believe you.

January 17, 2010 5:07 PM

"Until the day when God shall deign to reveal the future to man, all human wisdom is summed up in these two words,--Wait and hope." - Alexandre Dumas (1802 - 1870), The Count of Monte Cristo

"Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: You don't give up." - Anne Lamott

"Never deprive someone of hope; it might be all they have." - H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Discarded Sofa

photo: Christine Donnier-Valentin via Tess at
Magpie Tales 93

The Discarded Sofa

If I sat down here
waiting for you while you ply
your trade - as you fly
and then wade right in,
picking up dangerous kin
and loving wee ones
as if you welcome
the entire green scaly world
of dark styled dragons -
you could be my love
if I hold your place right here
below the siege line
and the hollow things,
the discarded parlor trade -
will you cover me?

written November 27, 2011 11:32 PM

"Baby Dragon" courtesy Elena Dudina, found on her latest profile *click here*

The poem written for Magpie Tales 93. To see all the contributors *click here*

Thursday, November 24, 2011

In The Wind

This photo is part of a series posted on Picasa by Ronald Gruijters 

To see his work, *go here*

Love can travel through time. We all know that. Poetry can too. Some of us know it. In fact words reside in the heart of magic and mages and shamans know this well.

I hope my US readers all had a fulfilling Thanksgiving Day. One thing that happened around here, I listened to a man try and save another man's life through loving and acknowledging him publicly today. This was a powerful moment in my otherwise serene day. I cried too. From time to time I am privileged to witness like this. This kind of love is priceless and powerful, and I think highly effective. We shall see. I mean I was not alone. There were perhaps twenty witnesses. I know many of them were as moved as I was. We may get a chance to know the rest of the story as it unfolds. I hope so.

In the Wind

I wrote you some lines
so long ago I forget
when, before we met...
but I know they are
your lines because they slanted
in the wind like you,
and the wind took them
like it takes your tangled curls
on this autumn day.

January 16, 2010 7:58 PM

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Solar Fire

This is so cool. Rachel and I are in a cycle again, playing off one another in poesy. *Go Here* to see my poem in its context. It appears there as a comment to her poem, just as that poem first appeared as a comment to my post. For that context *go here* But that blog post was written because Rachel started the cycle by posting this poem. *go here* There is something very special in this. We both agree we are better poets with each other. I have never met in person with this woman who lives in the Yukon and me in the Willamette Valley in Oregon but we have been in the poetry together for a few years now. This is intimacy of a special kind. I really, really value what we have had. God blesses me with you, Rachel.

Sometimes I am just amazed at what she does and I know she has the same sense of me from time to time. So this is actually simple (but how rare? how rare?) We actually understand each other at some deep level that reaches beyond place and time.

I wrote this poem yesterday but had an obligation to my participation in Three Word Wednesday. She told me she has a reply ready to go. Hooah. Poetic power rising! I envision the muses weaving in among themselves with complex design, sleek and filled with us and what we do for we are obedient to the gods and goddesses of creativity.

Solar Fire

Even though I go
all the way to the sharp chill
of the farther ice
clouds where from time to
time I might fall free to draw
a singular streak,
even there I feel
the tug of your nuclear

Your solar edge
gives the harmonic:
you wind the tonic drum beat
of my sloven soul.

November 22, 2011 12:42 PM


for access to Kuljit Athwal, the photographer who took this photo in Scotland and who holds all rights to this photo publicly posted in Picasa albums, *go here* He says email him at this address:

Holiday Dreams Arrive

Holiday Dreams Arrive*

My voice fills your form,
the particular hollow
right here - it frees me
of the misery
otherwise that might be mine.
It's no shallow thing,
no shallow gesture.
This glitter of holiday
sound could be a pain,
misery - false chord -
but here you are now to true
things for me. You fill
in the hollow spot
in my quavering presence
in this old city.

November 23, 2011 2:24 AM

*Editor's note: If this is difficult to take either because you do not hold the same sentiment or you know the writer's personal view on Christmas and all holidays in general, then you are invited to switch channels to parody...

This week Thom gives us these three words: hollow, misery, and shallow. As always, he writes,
"Each week, I post three words. You write something using the words. Then come back and post a link to the contribution with Mr. Linky (but please, link to the exact post, not your blog, by clicking on the exact post title and paste it to Mr. Linky below). As always, there's no hard-and-fast rule that you have to post on Wednesday. But I invite everyone to check back often to read and comment on other contributions. This is, after all, a community for writers who clamor for feedback."
To access Three Word Wednesday's current week and 3WW's list of links *click here*

Monday, November 21, 2011

Planetary Motions

"I've gotten convinced that there's something kind of timelessly vital and sacred about good writing. This thing doesn't have that much to do with talent, even glittering talent. Talent's just an instrument. It's like having a pen that works instead of one that doesn't. I'm not saying I'm able to work consistently out of the premise, but it seems like the big distinction between good art and so-so art lies somewhere in the art's heart's purpose, the agenda of the consciousness behind the text. It's got something to do with love. With having the discipline to talk out of the part of yourself that can love instead of the part that just wants to be loved." - David Foster Wallace

Planetary Motions

I am in aspect
to you, within orb, stately
moving but nearing
my time, retrograde
very soon now, slowing down
as I must, it's law
you know, withdrawing
according to the goddam
law, the average
within my small heart.

I do not want this for you.
If only you could.

November 21, 2011 7:48 PM

written in tandem to Rachel of the Waxing Moon *go here*

Sunday, November 20, 2011

November, 1975

Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman
offered by Tess on her Mag 92 posting

Wiki says:
"Joanne Gignilliat Trimmier Woodward (born February 27, 1930) is an American actress, television and theatrical producer, and widow of Paul Newman. She is perhaps best known for her Academy Award winning role in The Three Faces of Eve (1957)."

"Paul Leonard Newman (January 26, 1925 – September 26, 2008) was an American actor, film director, entrepreneur, humanitarian, professional racing driver and auto racing enthusiast. He won numerous awards, including an Academy Award for best actor for his performance in the 1986 Martin Scorsese film The Color of Money and eight other nominations, three Golden Globe Awards, a BAFTA Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, a Cannes Film Festival Award, an Emmy award, and many honorary awards. He also won several national championships as a driver in Sports Car Club of America road racing, and his race teams won several championships in open wheel IndyCar racing.

"With writer A.E. Hotchner, Newman founded Newman's Own, a line of food products, in 1982. Newman's Own donates all post-tax profits and royalties to charity. As of July 2011, these donations exceeded $300 million.

"Newman was married to Jackie Witte from 1949 to 1957. Newman met actress Joanne Woodward in 1953. Shortly after filming The Long, Hot Summer, in which he starred with Woodward, in 1957 he divorced Witte. He married Woodward early in 1958. They remained married for fifty years until his death in 2008."

Newman died of cancer most probably. He kept his last years and especially the state of his health quite private and so we only know obliquely.

I greatly admire Newman for his constancy with women and his willingness for philanthropy with his life partner Woodward. I use Newman's Own lemonade regularly.

November, 1975

When I married you
I nearly died from my fear
of commitment. Life
seems too long for me
to think of, souls spot welded
then full strength full depth
penetration joins
all along the edge of me
and you no matter
what, not even that,
the shore of land and ocean,
lines of ground and air.

When I married you
I got so drunk, stupid grin
on swollen wet face,
a sure harbinger
I did not then heed at all
though you might have known
and you married me

That's ironic,

November 20, 2011 11:30AM

I was married until the summer of 1997. The ending of our marriage was a nightmare but not the usual sort. We did not hate each other nor were we in conflict in the usual way. She was at the last severely physically, financially and mentally ill. Divorce was her solution to our life dilemma but we mutually supported the action. I no longer had heart for our union. It seemed to us both that staying together longer was lethal. She retained a lawyer to guarantee the paperwork but we had no quarrels at all over property. I had an interview with a lawyer but was so turned off by the idea that I walked away and trusted my wife and her lawyer to do the right thing. They did. I continue grateful that our divorce turned out that way. I have not married again.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Friday Night Arias

The coyote (Canis latrans), also known as the American jackal or the prairie wolf, is a species of canine found throughout North and Central America, ranging from Panama in the south, north through Mexico, the United States and Canada. It occurs as far north as Alaska and all but the northernmost portions of Canada.

There are currently 19 recognized subspecies, with 16 in Canada, Mexico and the United States, and 3 in Central America. Unlike its cousin the gray wolf, which is Eurasian in origin, evolutionary theory suggests the coyote evolved in North America during the Pleistocene epoch 1.81 million years ago alongside the Dire Wolf. Unlike the wolf, the coyote's range has expanded in the wake of human civilization, and coyotes readily reproduce in metropolitan areas.

The name "coyote" is borrowed from Mexican Spanish coyote, ultimately derived from the Nahuatl word cóyotl. Its scientific name, Canis latrans, means "barking dog" in Latin. Preliminary genetic evidence, however, has shown that "coyotes" in some areas are, genetically speaking, 85–90% Canis latrans, and from 10 to 15% Canis lupus (gray wolf), along with some domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris) DNA; this prompted one researcher to suggest, jokingly, that they be called "Canis soupus," as they are a "soup" (mixture) of canid species.

Coyote is also a mixture in the old stories.

I have affinity for Coyote. I love the idea of him, of his wisdom and his foolishness. He suffers from human frailties and that's dangerous for any being who possesses real power. Coyote occasionally has divine powers. Coyote is very old, but he is childlike and is often quite childish and irresponsible, inexplicable in one so ancient. The truth is coyote is born anew quite often and he may be old as hills are old and worn, as the Siberian Traps and the Deccan Traps are old and persist despite great age, but when born anew, his enthusiasm and presence are decidedly youthful. His place in the new world is shared in the old. Hermes has some of him as does Pan. Some of the others as well have some of his stuff. He is diffuse in the old world but Aesop presented stories in which other totems acted in his stead. There are times when things deserve a good howl.

In the Major Arcana Tarot card of The Fool Coyote appears in disguise. In the Rider-Waite deck, sometimes he is the little dog, sometimes the youth. That's just my opinion. There are other Tarot decks and many other opinions.

Friday Night Arias

Coyote sings moon
white songs, pale bone songs, silver
streams of young young dreams
from deep inner troves,
ancient wisdom, starry keys.

And I've heard your voice.
I commend the way
you rose from exile, new songs
near my long gray lines.

January 16, 2010 3:59 AM
Modified November 18, 2011 7:02 PM

Blood Trail

"Action has meaning only in relationship and without understanding relationship, action on any level will only breed conflict. The understanding of relationship is infinitely more important than the search for any plan of action." - Jiddu Krishnamurti

Jiddu Krishnamurti (May 12, 1895 – February 17, 1986) was a renowned writer and speaker on philosophical and spiritual subjects. His subject matter included: psychological revolution, the nature of the mind, meditation, human relationships, and bringing about positive change in society. He constantly stressed the need for a revolution in the psyche of every human being and emphasized that such revolution cannot be brought about by any external entity, be it religious, political, or social.

Blood Trail

I tried to help you
on the long shadowy trail
where all the blood spilled
and covered the tracks
we tried to follow as if
God walked here, was first
to leave small footprints
before that army followed,
scuffed away all sign.

January 15, 2010 2:12 AM

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Computer Illness

I am seriously compromised by malware and not sure what it will take nor how long.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Same Old, Same Old

The words Thom offered us today:

Impetus; noun: The force or energy with which a body moves; the force that makes something happen or happen more quickly.

Solace; noun: Comfort or consolation in a time of distress or sadness; verb: Give solace to.

Vindication; verb: Clear (someone) of blame or suspicion; show or prove to be right, reasonable, or justified.

I would win the argument, drive her to tears in the evening, taste the victory for a few seconds and then go home to stew, confused and distressed, this over and over, only to come back in the morning, knowing I was right but she had won nonetheless. In that time I would humble myself for my behavior, again, and it would all subside til next time. Underneath it all, I never lost knowing I was right.

Is being right the hill on which I should perish?

Same Old, Same Old

Clear vindication
but there's so little solace
in it. A puzzle -
I was completely
sure these stupid times would change
when I won this game.
I, stalwart, on top
of the verbal pinnacle,
the impetus all mine,
the shining moment
all my own doing, poised to
lift into the air
of permanence, brave
new world, that's what you should say
and all I taste is
the back of your head.

November 16, 2011 4:56 AM

This poem written for Three Word Wednesday *click here* to see the different ways we have handled these three words.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Making My Choice

Golden Gate Bridge on a foggy morning
with the SanFrancisco Bay Bridge in the background

This picture was taken from the headland on the seaward side and north of the Golden Gate Bridge, from the Golden Gate National Recreation Area looking back into the San Francisco Bay. In the background on the extreme left Treasure and Yerba Buena Islands are seen and the part of the Bay Bridge shown is the span from the islands to San Francisco.

Making My Choice

You convince me, love.

I shall choose this very day
to return to dream
though dream may turn drab
because I like the quickness
of all the changes,
and do not mind how
sense is razored, sacrificed
in the dark wildness

of my fishy brain.

January 14, 2010 5:35 AM

"We all have our own life to pursue, our own kind of dream to be weaving. And we all have some power to make wishes come true, as long as we keep believing." - Louisa May Alcott

"The inability to open up to hope is what blocks trust, and blocked trust is the reason for blighted dreams." - Elizabeth Gilbert

"He was a dreamer, a thinker, a speculative philosopher... or, as his wife would have it, an idiot." - Douglas Adam

"Like all dreamers I confuse disenchantment with truth." - Jean-Paul Sartre

That last quote is very powerful and suggests how complex this all can be. The truth according to Sartre can side with the dream rather than with its disenchantment. Keep this in mind when someone tells you how myths are superstitions. Yes Virginia, sometimes there really is a Santa Claus. Of course this depends on how you mean it.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

How I Used Photoshop Yesterday

Courtesy of Google Images, through
Tess at Willow Manor

"Ever since happiness heard your name, she has been running through the streets trying to find you." - Hafiz of Persia

"One cannot be deeply responsive to the world without being saddened very often." - Erich Fromm

"Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh." - Kahlil Gibran

How I Used Photoshop Yesterday

You tested me, running
through the city streets. I drove
through your inner states.
All I could find were
the chairs you left sitting out
on the misty lawn
so I shopped you in
as this anonymous girl,
an uncredited
image to be found
by future poets, to be
the source for broken
hearts or toyed with, their images.
I'm taking a nap.

November 13, 2011 10:33 AM

Written for Magpie Tales. *click here*

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Getting The News

Getting The News

Today the trees pray.

Dressed in their white crust of ice
they stretch to heaven
just like I once did
when I found out what was next,
what froze my heart strings
as I found the note
you left so casually
by the kitchen sink.

January 13, 2010 9:19 AM

"Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before." - Audre Lorde

Audre Lorde (born Audrey Geraldine Lorde February 18, 1934 – November 17, 1992) was a Caribbean-American writer, poet and activist.

"Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance." - Carl Sandburg

Carl Sandburg (January 6, 1878 – July 22, 1967) was an American writer and editor, best known for his poetry. He won three Pulitzer Prizes, two for his poetry and another for a biography of Abraham Lincoln. H. L. Mencken called Carl Sandburg "indubitably an American in every pulse-beat."

"I don't think you get to good writing unless you expose yourself and your feelings. Deep songs don't come from the surface; they come from the deep down. The poetry and the songs that you are supposed to write, I believe are in your heart." - Judy Collins

Judith Marjorie "Judy" Collins (born May 1, 1939) is an American singer and songwriter, known for her eclectic tastes in the material she records (which has included folk, show tunes, pop, rock and roll and standards); and for her social activism. She is an alumna of the University of Colorado.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Spiritual Judo - Reprise

"Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other's eyes for an instant?" - A question asked by Henry David Thoreau

"Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something." - Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau (born David Henry Thoreau; July 12, 1817 – May 6, 1862) (properly pronounced Thaw-roe) was an American author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, and leading transcendentalist. He is best known for his book Walden, a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings, and his essay Civil Disobedience, an argument for individual resistance to civil government in moral opposition to an unjust state.

Thoreau's books, articles, essays, journals, and poetry total over 20 volumes.

Spiritual Judo

When you give me looks
like that, I know you are just
about to tell me
what's good for me, what's
right by God, if I'll listen
to you this one time.
I long ago learned
how to use your force to throw
you past me, to give
you to God, saying
You deal with her, my Brother,
she's too much for me.

Written March 9, 2009 7:23 PM
First Posted December 18, 2009

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Open Wider - Reprise

Material first posted November 25, 2008, edited for posting tonight.

Each moment is new. There is a real sense in which the entire whole (holy) thing is created entirely in each instant. This is true of experience in the way the brain works (there are intervals of duration which are too fast, can't be experienced, and so our apprehension of things is literally more like movie frames than we think) with the smooth flow of things a filling in of the gaps. I happen to believe that this is merely a mirror of the cosmic process, though the gapping is very small and quick. I believe that quantum mechanics basically forces this view. It makes a kind of quantum "sense" to know that I am brand new this moment.

Open Wider

Where am I? Empty.
Stripped of form in the holy,
What is left can't hold.

I shall not shut down, not now.
Open wider if I can - yes.

When I return, I'll sing.
I'll step easy in gardens,
And I'll remember.

This poem deals with a notion of spiritual life that is actually echoed in at least some of the martial arts. If life is too big, the spirit too warm, the light too bright, the adversary too severe, the pain too intense, then open wider. If I have opened myself wider I have given somewhere for the encounter to go. So don't hold back. This is counter-intuitive in general, though perhaps not to experienced mothers in the middle of giving birth.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Drunkard's Plight

The Structure of the Proton

Wiki says:
"A quark ( /ˈkwɔrk/ or /ˈkwɑrk/) is an elementary particle and a fundamental constituent of matter. Quarks combine to form composite particles called hadrons, the most stable of which are protons and neutrons, the components of atomic nuclei. Due to a phenomenon known as color confinement, quarks are never directly observed or found in isolation; they can only be found within hadrons. For this reason, much of what is known about quarks has been drawn from observations of the hadrons themselves.

"The quark model was independently proposed by physicists Murray Gell-Mann and George Zweig in 1964. Quarks were introduced as parts of an ordering scheme for hadrons, and there was little evidence for their physical existence until deep inelastic scattering experiments at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center in 1968. All six flavors of quark have since been observed in accelerator experiments; the top quark, first observed at Fermilab in 1995, was the last to be discovered.

"Gell-Mann originally named the quark after the sound made by ducks. For some time, he was undecided on an actual spelling for the term he intended to coin, until he found the word quark in James Joyce's book Finnegans Wake:

"Three quarks for Muster Mark!
Sure he has not got much of a bark
And sure any he has it's all beside the mark.
—James Joyce, Finnegans Wake"

Notice Muster Mark

Thom suggests these three words:


Go to Three Word Wednesday to see these words used in many different ways.

Here's mine

Drunkard's Plight

There's a hitch in me.
I limp inside, use my cane
to warn the right side
of what's left of me
now that I drank the whole bar
in one awful night
of truth's dissembly.
And the last I remember,
Three quarts for Muster!
I, hoarse, cried and cried.

written November 9, 2011 4:48 AM

Monday, November 7, 2011

It's Complicated

"I like to imagine a persons psyche to be like a boardinghouse full of characters. The ones who show up regularly and who habitually follow the house rules may not have met other long-term residents who stay behind closed doors, or who only appear at night. An adequate theory of character must make room for character actors, for the stuntmen and animal handlers, for all the figures who play bit parts and produce unexpected acts. They often make the show fateful, or tragic, or farcically absurd." - James Hillman

Wiki says: James Hillman (April 12, 1926 – October 27, 2011) was an American psychologist. He studied at, and then guided studies for, the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich, founded a movement toward archetypal (he might say imaginal) psychology and retired into private practice, writing and traveling to lecture, until his death at his home in Connecticut on October 27, 2011, from bone cancer.

Ouch. My Dad died of this cancer and it really hurt. I am told it is one of the worst. I wish to honor Jim. This is the first I have heard of his death and he was a giant among the psychologists in the manner of Jung. Jung wanted no followers. He wanted compatriots, comrades, peers. Hillman actually complied with that, enough so that it is possible to contemplate someone coming along and gathering his works with the intention of creating a Hillmanian psychology of the imagination.

My friend Erin who blogs from Northern Ontario posted a poem today that inspired this one. To see her wonderful work *click here*

It's Complicated

You are granular
in your placement of your time
in the midst of mine.
Gravelly featured
and corrugated of soul,
that's how I'll play it
trying to forget
the divinity we left
behind on purpose
or at least as we
agreed at the start of things.
Who we once were, that
can't be helped as we
are now, too rugged to smooth
things over but I
do miss my white wings.

November 7, 2011 1:04 PM

I am amused. This is the third poem I have named It's Complicated. I don't see why not. I pulled them up side by side and I almost posted all three just to show how complicated it really is... Someday I will do that perhaps. Not today.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

How To Spend Memorial Day

This post was written in tangent to this photo take from Tess' blogsite, placed there as the topic driver for her Magpie Tales gathering. You may *click here* to get to the links that her contributors leave there. This session is marked as the 90th post and I presume this means ninety weeks, nearing two years of activity.

Some of the better reasons to visit New England are the old graveyards. We had friends to visit in Vermont and I fell in love with Revolutionary War graveyards. I loved the immediacy of the past in the dates on the stones, the preservation of some of them and the neglected quality of others. As a migratory child of World War II California, I found the compressed distance to the 1700s was palpable and delicious.

My family has not been among those who bury our dead. We cremate.

I had to wait a number of years more to have someone personal to me buried in a cemetery. Now I have a couple nearby in the local national cemetery and I have used that site as a power point on the planet, a place somehow closer to God's ear. When my wife of over twenty years died I took a portion of her ashes up there - the cemetery is placed elevated on the side of a steep hill near the top - and I sprinkled her ashes in the summer dry crack behind the marble plaque that identified her aunt and uncle. I visited at least once a year for over a decade.

At one point a few years ago I went up there and made my amends to my wife's shade. Since that time I have not returned but once.

How To Spend Memorial Day

Set marble stubs, wood
painted or not in lines
drawn on the forest
floor and fenced by men
entrusted to build for us
the reservation
of the dead within
what was once not ours at all
except to pass through.
We plant our dry lives
as seeds of dissolution,
wait for them to grow.
I pledge to visit
but then declare that one day
a day better used
as a day of rest.

November 6, 2011 8:00 AM

Friday, November 4, 2011

Stress Reduction

Stress Reduction

I have no advice
to give, no grand instruction,
only a viewpoint
that repaints the way.

I say stress strongly flows,
a river between
close high banks that press
and force the rising tumult.

So open wide, wide,
so wide that all goes
quiet, placid in the way
of soft meanders.

January 13, 2010 8:45 AM

Thursday, November 3, 2011

That Is All & The State Of Things

Dreaming Of The Afterlife

"A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge." - Thomas Carlyle

"Affection is responsible for nine-tenths of whatever solid and durable happiness there is in our lives." - C. S. Lewis

"All my life, my heart has yearned for a thing I cannot name." - Andre Breton

"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage." - Lao Tzu

"All you need is love. All you need is love, love. Love is all you need." - John Lennon

That Is All

Love is not only
happy horseshit nor even
the McCoy.  Love is
not just sunshine and hope
but is the grim job watching
my wife die, also
my Mom take her last
breath while I said, "It's okay
with us, dear, let go."
Those who gathered stayed
silent at that finality
and then I began
to weep. That is all.

written November 3, 2011   7:05 PM

written in tangent to a poem I found here

The State Of Things

I am blessed, no doubt.
So why have I found complaints
Like vines choking me?

Just today I felt
mortality rising up
like river systems
in flood as I stood
at my mirror saying, "You!
you are bound to die,
and soon, sad bastard!"

But truth is, I guess, I want
death to come to me.
I am okay with it
and wish for a mate to be
with me anyway.

Nothing's more selfish than that...

written, November 3, 2011 12:50 PM

written in tangent to a poem I found here

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Going To The Afghans

Thom writes: "3WW CCLXV Each week, I post three words. You write something using the words. Then come back and post a link to the contribution with Mr. Linky (but please, link to the exact post, not your blog, by clicking on the exact post title and paste it to Mr. Linky below). As always, there's no hard-and-fast rule that you have to post on Wednesday.

But I invite everyone to check back often to read and comment on other contributions. This is, after all, a community for writers who clamor for feedback.

This week's words: Carnage, Jerk, Puncture

Click here for the link: Three Word Wednesday

Going To The Afghans

"Slip loose the dogs of
war!" you roared, quoting Shakespeare.
What a real jerk off.
The carnage is yours.
I hope you find your own fate.
Red pain, blood slick pools
Of courage - we fools
fell on this killing ground you
set for us this day -
devotion's damned dance
of heroes, of death's sharp prick.
I weep for us all.
This puncture of rage
has holed my heart and my hope
for the human race.

November 2, 2011 5:28 AM

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