birdhouse (Thanksgiving 2014)

birdhouse

the conversational rustle
of 50 cent newspapers
the quiet landscape waits
squirrels find us irrelevant
an inconvenience

elevate elevate elevate

the rarified mind of a scavenger

the way he walks is a mood
the mystery of modern appliance
it is impossible to be with you
words must not escape me

the family apologist
the broken hearted nihilist
the jovial atheist
the good one

a lake of conversation in the morning
a spill of coffee
confusion about dishes
the briefest appearance of a monk

the companionship of strangers
the deep and hollow rumble
the sweet cruelty of those who don’t lie

edit
memories become Truth
stories become Identity
quietly quietly

I do not know my place
the comfort of running water
and soap
everyone has to do the dishes

we have everything we ever wished for
we have learned not to wish so much

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thirsty as the ocean

thirsty as the ocean
all undrinkable
hungry as time
all-consuming
impossible.
a tower on sand
lets the world
wash out beneath her
still stands.
late summer sunburn
slow song sipping on
dreams that only make you
never wanna wake up

 

~~~~just a leftover summer poem~~~~

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On failure, learning, and finding your path.

Have patience, and do not hesitate.

When you act, act with certainty. If you are not certain, do not act. Or make yourself certain of this: You will fail. You will fail many times.

Failure does not cost as much as inaction.

Inaction is itself failure.

But even that failure can never be complete. For even in inaction, we have consciousness. And it is the nature of consciousness to try. It is the nature of life to try. To live. To grow.

As long as you are alive, some part of you still knows that it is the energy of potential. Some part of you has caught a whiff of the infinite possibilities beyond your current state of being, and as long as you are alive, that light in you will seek its source.

If you learn to trust the light within you that seeks its source, you will be lead to wisdom. You will find within yourself deep wells of compassion and rich reserves of kindness. In this, you will find joy.

Humble yourself to the inevitability of failure, and resolve to learn your lessons, but come back daily to the spark within you and the well of inner resource. And when right action becomes clear, step forward with the calm certainty of one who has failed before and is not afraid.

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A Prayer on September 11th

I sat down to write this morning before work, and this is what happened.

9/11/17

The date stops me. I planned on writing about something else.

Someone made up a story about who the enemy was and why bad things happen to us, and we directed all our fear into rage and vindictiveness.

“Tears are bullets when they harden,” a line from a Stanley Kunitz poem, turns out to be true (poets always knew).

We have committed the terrible crime of dehumanization. In our own hearts and minds, we have replaced the faces of our neighbors with the cartoonish  masks of enemies. We project our worst fears on them because it’s easier to hate an imaginary enemy than to face ourselves. And we imagine enemies everywhere. And where we imagine them they become real, if only to us, the terrified and deluded.

Wake up.

Let’s pray for our own souls.

Lord save me from my own delusion. Teach me to sit my ego down and look it in the eye. Let me see my neighbor’s true face. I will be brave, and I will act with love. Let us heal this wound.

Amen.

When I was a child, they told us in Catholic school that the word “amen” meant, “I don’t understand, but I believe.”

I don’t understand how we will heal this wound, but I believe that we can and we must. There are 16-year-old children now who were born after 9/11. They have only known a world in which we are at war and are steeped in a culture that believes enemies are everywhere. How do we teach them not to live in fear? I don’t know, but I still believe in trying.

Amen.

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