Feeds:
Posts
Comments

 

 

 

Someday I’ll prefer to sit, to sit

and breathe and think or not think

and sit. But now, now when

the high mountains sing with snow

and the snowcat has groomed

a path through the nowhere of spruce

and the sky is a winnowing blue

that makes me unknow my name,

yes, now is the moment to slip deeper

into the self of myself

and snap skis on my feet

and let the day slap a smile on my face

that I could not possibly unsmile,

because for now, there is

this burn in the lungs, this wind

in the face, this spilling of laughter,

this joy in stride and push and glide,

this thrill in losing the breath.

 

 

 

Practicing KonMari

 

 

 

I did it. Exactly as she said.

I removed everything

from my closets and drawers,

and touched each thing—

every sock, every shirt, every shoe—

and I asked them, “Do you bring me joy?”

 

Joy, it turns out, wears many clothes.

She likes scarves. Wide necklines.

Black pants. She loves long knit dresses

and tall leather boots. She needs

lots of sweaters and many gardening gloves.

 

And all the while I did it,

I did as she said, I visualized

the life I want,

which is apparently a life

in which my closet is full of black pants

and scarves and tall leather boots—

a life in which I talk to my clothes

and smile as they whisper back to me,

Joy, Joy, Joy.

Almost Wet

after The Great Wave off Kanagawa by Katsushika Hokusai

 

In this sea, the great rogue wave is always

about to crash, and the fishermen

in their long thin boats

slip themselves forever in its path—

and though it hangs above them

with hundreds of frothing claws,

and though they cower atop their boats,

they’ve yet to be cast off into the sea—

and the moment is forever charged

with an anticipation larger than

the highest mountain, caught in curiosity—

how will it be to be devoured?

 

 

 

Someone has crocheted a half dozen blankets—

one dark purple, another camo green, another

with stripes in every possible color.

There are half a dozen quilts with bright squares.

And someone has knit a dozen hats—

and a basket on the shelf overflows with handmade scarves.

 

My friend chooses a pink cotton pillow

that someone has sewn in the shape of a heart

and a long creamy scarf, impossibly soft.

She would rather be anywhere but here,

but look at that smile as she dons the scarf,

as if its stitches are keeping her from falling away.

Drinking Assam Tea

 

 

Malty, bright and voluptuous,

the tea meets me this morning,

and though I’m alone, the kitchen

 

is filled with other hands—the

potter’s, for instance, that threw

and trimmed and pulled and glazed

 

this favorite mug into mugness.

And the hands of the harvesters

in India who gathered the fresh green leaves

 

of the second flush, then

spread them on a tray and left them

to dry in the sun. And who rolled the leaves?

 

And who gathered them after they aged?

I wrap both hands around the mug

and inhale the musky scent of tea

 

and marvel at how much humanity

went into this simple cup. I stare

at my knuckles, my fingers, my palms.

 

It’s your turn, I tell them.

Serve the world well. Can you make something

so bold, so strong?

 

And No Key

 

 

 

I plunge both hands

into the love poem,

 

surprised to find

they’re now handcuffed there.

If you could use some good news, find your way to DOOGOOD Stories, an international site hosted in Finland, sharing stories of random acts of kindness around the world and their ripple effects.

If you scroll around, you’ll find where I talk about one of my mentors, Art Goodtimes, and how a simple and personal interaction 25 years ago changed everything about how I meet the world, and how that random act of kindness is one of the seeds that made this site and the daily poems happen.

Check it out!

 

IMG_0708

 

This Is No Slap Dash Quiz

 

 

Part of me wants to give you

the book of answers, the solution key,

to help you know which decision, A, B, C or D,

will bring the most healing, the most happiness.

I no longer believe in such a book, such a key.

 

Instead I wish for you the peace

that comes only with surrender—

a word that sounds beyond reason

until it becomes beacon, becomes

north star, becomes map.

 

May you know for certain

that in every case, you are beloved.

May you know beyond doubt

that no matter what happens,

you always become more essential, more you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hundreds of smooth red stones—

we gathered them that summer

and spent days carefully laying them out

into a wide and winding red path.

It had no real starting point, no destination.

We tucked white daisies between the rocks.

We said it was for the fairies.

I wouldn’t have said it then, in fact,

I hesitate today to say we didn’t believe in them.

They gave us so much purpose.

Even now, I’m following that path.

The Gnoissienne 2 Speaks

 

yet another poem inspired by this composition by Erik Satie

 

 

You wonder why I haunt you

like moonlight, why I come to you

like morning fog, dream thick and cool,

why I steep myself into your thoughts

like bergamot in black tea.

You wonder why I seldom leave you,

why I slip into your silences

the way rye darkly slips into bread.

 

It is my work to give you shivers,

make you tremble, make you still.

It is my work to make you fall in love

with the darkness inside yourself. It is my work

to be the unexpected black swan, and you,

it is your work to be the night pond.

 

 

%d bloggers like this: