Monday, March 31, 2014

The Lucky Few




Few are the lucky ones

Who know wisdom

From the start,

For the rest;


         We must burn our hands

         To learn the stove is hot,

         We must wound with words

         To realize the virtue of silence,

         We must suffer our broken hearts

         To know the true value of love.


Lucky are the few

Who know wisdom

From the start. 


The photo of the flowers is a found image.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

North American Ghost Flight



Above the dry sticks of a winter without rain
Speed great flocks of chattering crows.
They head east into the fading mist at dusk,
As though searching for the ghosts
Of passenger pigeons,
Now lost in the mists of time.


The fields and trees that surround my home are filled with crows, and I must admit to a real fondness for them, despite their rather dubious reputation in the popular mind. The expression "A smiling man with a bad reputation" comes close to it. 

The above poem was written after a late afternoon walk up a steep hill nearby that gives a commanding view of this whole area. I was amazed at the tremendous number of crows flocking as described, reminding me of the descriptions of the now-extinct passenger pigeons darkening the sky like a cloud over the prairie.

The image is Vincent Van Gogh's last painting, called "Wheat Field with Crows"


Monday, August 26, 2013

What Sea? Samadhi Poem





 What Sea is this,

Rising in the mind of Man?

What gulls are they that cry?

Lord and vassal

Regard each other

From the same chair.

Frozen ice may melt and seas may rise. Some may look away and try to deny, but to deny is to decline. Others regard the change and rise with the tide. Either way, the familiar slips away beneath the waves, revealing anew the shape of things as they are, revealing that this sea is no other than ourself, revealing the shape of things as they have always been. 
Guest and host embrace. Lord and vassal always occupy the same seat.

“The eye through which I see God is the same eye through which God sees me; my eye and God's eye are one eye, one seeing, one knowing, one love.” 
- Meister Eckart


Thursday, August 1, 2013

Opinions Are Like...




What is the use of having an attitude,

Of honing an edge with pumped-up platitudes,

Or holding your ground with no room for latitude?

No prizes are given out to those

Who die with the most opinions.

You’ll be keeping them all to yourself

In that last silent solitude.



Today's image from: http://adriano10.deviantart.com/art/Silence-Solitude-66087022

Monday, June 3, 2013

These Tears





What is it?
What are these 

Tears really for?

Saying good-bye,
Though no one
Is going away.

Saying thank you,
In deep gratitude,
For the gift 
No eye can
See.

Today's image is from a very thoughtful posting about tears, including a number of great quotes about them, found @ : http://divinevirtuosity.blogspot.com/2012/10/tears-oceans-tides-in-your-eyes.html

Monday, May 13, 2013

The Reason Why




Make sense to you?

Makes sense to me.

How could I tell you

How to be?

See that man banging his head

Against a wall so hard

That it makes him cry?

If you were standing 

In his shoes 

Perhaps you'd know

The reason why.

I composed this poem while driving one afternoon and seeing a crazy-bad bit of driving by a complete stranger. Why the sudden stops, why the multiple lane changes? Why ask why? 

When I got to the meeting I was driving to I wrote this down and read it fresh to a group of friends there. One of them told me about having seen two different people literally banging their heads against walls. Both persons had just witnessed the death of someone they loved, one in combat the other in a freak accident. Their despairing actions do make a terrible sort of sense, once you know the reason.

How about our own actions? What visible or invisible walls are we currently banging our poor heads into? Would any of our painful and persistent collisions make any sort of terrible sense to a disinterested viewer? It's worth asking the question.

Scotland's beloved national poet, Robert Burns famously put it well.

"O would some power the giftie gie us 

to see ourselves as others see us."

- "To a Louse" 

Today's image is from: slwakes.wordpress.com


Monday, April 29, 2013

Mortality




This business of drawing a last breath is no joke,
It’s a serious matter, make no mistake.
There’s so much hot soup still steaming
At the bottom of the bowl,
So many laughs remain at large,
Awaiting apprehension.
An army of metaphors are left unmixed,
And the very next moment is now standing in the wings,
Just dying to burst forward with its’ wild surprise!

So, stick to your diet while you compose,
And revise once more your big exit line,
Stay on your treadmill and ponder
All the kisses you have left to plant.
Because it’s a serious business
Drawing your last breath,
Make no mistake,
It’s no joke.

The two old-timers in Francisco Goyas' sardonic but life-affirming painting above have got the right idea, while there's soup in the bowl, keep eating!