bright eyes this close

do stars each reflect your life, giving place.   a line of sight.   distance
       is no seperation.   no excuse.

spaces, between, hard to see, are full, like painting life.   connection
       is how we know.

whether we see or not see.   creation remains as meant to be.   us too.
 
 
blindfolded we were taken to the mountaintop.   stars fingertips close.
       we spoke.   they responded in kind.

vision is dry, not wet.   yet I hear a splash.   dare describe.

       mother came every time when I called in dark night.   doubts.
       moments are not a river.   yet.   a river moves.
 
 
summer is warm dust.   back to bare back, we swallowed till full.
       she had a name.   we both had names.   inches close.

       I follow.   I do not insist.

here, one certainty.   if you don’t look, you won’t see.   although,
       you may be seen anyway.   care, when walking beneath a limb
       during dawn, during dusk.   the natives said.

stars say, it’s the neck we first appreciate.   bright eyes repeat.

do they land like rain, leaf on leaf, a million times.
 
 
 
here’s one thread.   a matter of choice.
 
 
 
 
 
 

weighing of the heart


great one Anubis, lord beneath our feet, weigh my heart to be
a feather, kin of truth, thus spare me from the jaws of Ammit.

 
 
 
dare risk lying to your heart.   the measure of measures.

from earthen feet to skyward face, how horizons circumnavigate.
       how dreams are dreaming us.

living feels like dying.   another lie on the fire.   do I know
       less than I did before.

here.   another tributary.
 
 
 
if you observe, if you listen to a secret long enough, truth is revealed.
 
 
 
       one priest says.

we are born into lies.   we face into the shadow of Light.
with death we turn facing into Light.   all truth made visible.

       wisdom here observed.
 
 
 
how many times have I already been eaten alive.   countless I suspect.

is it fair.   is it right.   that we be judged by all creatures great and small.
       I think yes.

what does language think of me.   have I been kind.   considerate.
which words have known my tongue, my lips.   like water moves.   like waves
       reflect.
 
 
       a universe surrenders everything.   stories painting.

       one fingerprint.
 
 
 
 
 
 
About Anubis.   The Egyptian god of the dead was instrumental in passing into the afterlife.   To the Egyptians, the heart rather than brain, was the source of human wisdom and the center of emotions and memory, thereby considered the most important of internal organs.   Because of this the heart was left inside the deceased’s body, later to reveal the person’s true character.   In the “weighing of the heart” rite by Anubis, god of the dead, the heart is compared to one feather of the goddess Maat, who personifies order, truth and what is right.   If it weighed more than the feather, it was immediately consumed by the crocodile diety Ammit.   All this reflected their real Nile life and the hazards faced.

While not a spiritual follower of their mythos, that phrase “the weighing of the heart” very much appeals to me.   What a poetic and provocative way to express “judgment”.   Egyptians were both very poetic and practical I think.

Another of their symbolic rituals when installing a Pharaoh into their tomb, the last step as all the attendants departed, was to place a watered plate of rice seeds near the sarcophagus.   Thus, in the dark, the seeds would germinate making a last real symbol of “life” for the dead king.   A rather beautiful and intimate ritual.
 
 
 
 
 
 

illusions inside my pocket

       like a rabbit is.

       I am traveling to the future today.   I’ll only
       do it once.   once is enough.

I love the water in the dark.   the moon sitting across the table
from me.   shining sand, wet does due honor the sea.

moon and I, we could talk.   quiet talk.   gentle talk.
but there’s no need.   so we don’t.

I could lay into wet sand.   there would be no cold.
there would be remembering.   and tomorrow, of course.

grain by grain.   water is my gown.

see how we splinter and revive.   maybe you think, what,
is everything stopped.   are the boats all gone.

but just wait for the lanterns.   even if it takes a year.
time is not a measure.   only our breathing is.

by sevens they arrive.   a circle is.

a wedding ring.
 
 
 
 
 
 
MBA webcam views of Monterey Bay used with permission.
please visit and/or support the Monterey Bay Aquarium.
they make the ocean more alive.   us too.

please click header image to see water change.
 
 
 
 
 

look away, she said


which is it.   am I waiting for the Sun to rise or night to Fall.

this is the part where I’d say something comforting.   if I could.
 
 
beautiful words can be frightening at the same time.

I keep waiting for something to eat me.   maybe being worthwhile, then.
from inside a different belly.   I wonder how prey feel about that sport.

I keep looking for the right kind of surrendering.   not yet.   not yet.

rituals don’t seem to invoke any truth any more.   Fish don’t waste time with thoughts like these.   Swim, just swim.
 
 
he said that he liked my allusion, two hands being a bowl that is always our own.   a gift, you see.   is that the best of me.   one observation.

then gone.
 
 
 
 

    there was a man, most alive in the western desert.   observing, following a mountain lion at a watering hole.   he approached when the cat was gone, observing footprints in the wet mud.   then for no good reason, wondered, what if.   turned and there, circled around, behind him now, the lion had come to look himself.   quiet as unmoving air.   nowhere to run.   the man knew better.  don’t even turn away.   one great leap and lion would be onto him.   lion moved slightly left, slightly right.  yes please, look away, an instant is all I need, said the lion’s patient eyes.

    look away.   look away.   no, I have your eye in mine, thought the man.

    more stubborn was the man.    lion walks away.

 
 
 
 
write.    don’t think.    write.
 
 
 
 
 
 
the rule of predators.   kill swiftly, take no risk.   not that the prey might win the struggle, but the predator might get injured and thus be less able next time around.   death by starvation that result.
 
 
 
 
 

morning meditation, thirds

looking east.

 
 
do I ever tire of water.   no.   I don’t.

I refresh my view moment by moment.   all
       the same.   and.   unknown.

just the way your faces are.   to me.

perspective.   that’s what they call, how I see.

how many fish in the bowl.   how many.

       how many are seeing you.

what place calls itself home.   go fish.
 
 
there was a place and a time.  it was early night.
       water included.

       boats with lanterns.  one fashion
       to deal with water.   lots of water.

       let’s call it a parade.

lots of us fish, we came to look and see.
 
 
 
I try not to be broken.   you see?

       like water is.
 
 
 
we can be easy to please.

       virtue.   that’s what I call that ability.

       you know.   hand in hand.   feet to feet.   ordinary.

 
 
 
 
 
 
MBA webcam views of Monterey Bay used with permission.
please visit and/or support the Monterey Bay Aquarium.
they make the ocean more alive.   us too.

click to enlarge the header image.   see the water, see the trees.
 
 
 
 
 

first light forgiven being bold

I am the sound.   I am not the voice.

I am the empty shell.   wind whistles me.

when you listen to me, you are listening to wind.

I am this much big.   farther now than I can see.

bigger also seems to mean a thinner thread.

I am a fish awash on the beach.   someone will find me soon.

healed or eaten.   either will be sufficient.   next.

I don’t know.   don’t know what face wants finding now.

I know what’s left behind.

I know what never arrived.

I am the dawn with sleeping eyes.   perhaps.

perhaps to know your name.   a river does.
 
 
will you know mine, in first light.
 
 
 
 
 
 

even when words begin to burn


 
 
       kindling.

even WHEN silence is not listening.   the body does.

surrender, a much maligned form of negotiation.

       here, scrunch over.   make some room.
 
 
at lion’s first sight of antelope.   described as honest desire.

not a threat.   appreciation.   the lion said.
 
 
       you are me, the lion said aloud, being literal.

       every morsel.   all the way to the end.

no less a noble life, becoming me.
 
 
see my feet my legs.   how swift I am.
        fanned into flame.

       I am a grounded bird.   hovering.
 
 
       here I am.   on your lap.   you are my nest,
       she spoke to me.
 
 
every day is another prayer.   a circle drawn.
       a question framed.

       toes kept inside the rounded thought.
 
 
 
       wet nose on a cold dry night.   familiar.

       then some rain.
 
 
 
 
 
 

my star has a tail


my star has a tail.

well maybe, we all do.

a fish, they have one.   an octopus, goodness, I’m thinking the number eight.

us.   how many.   is it two, perhaps it’s four.   crawling or standing up.

       does that count.

       some tails you know proceed the cart.
 
 
my tail is reaching seventy light-years far away from here.
       that’s history on the hoof.

       are we falling torso first.   rhetorical.

       most questions are, don’t you think.

does light ever really end.   dim is not the same as gone lost & stray.
 
 
dear Sol, the letter begins.
 
 
they will know you farther and nearer than me.   you are more bright.
but I am still, a part of the inside of you.   always.   us.

     when they see you, they see me.

     I promise.   no lonliness.
 
 
for you, I make bright words.   my share of gravity.   lifting Light.
 
 
no lie, as you include me, so too, doubt is spliced into my sensibilities.

     truth is, ignorance is not bliss.   no tail sewn in place.
     no circumference.

wet the end with your tongue and lips.

     bare threads.   hand over hand.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

image:  Solar System Quilt by Ellen Harding Baker 1886, public domain

 
 
 
 
 
 

water is my hand


what’s it like being water.

       remember, no question marks.

not water in a glass.   not coming out of a faucet.
not in a bottle, no matter the shape.

something free.   that’s the water I want to be.

looking out a window, there’s Monterey Bay.

       that would be more than fine.

       that would be a relationship to last for life.

       fish & squid & crabs, some whales too.

       heaven beneath our feet.   water is.

feeling, tasting, embracing every thirst,
they’d find me close in, your shoreline found,

       the edge of being, adored.

in-between your toes.   don’t be shy.
 
 
 
there was a man I knew, no, more than that.
       he sang a song.

       it became my own, became clay in my hands.

       there’s one line, the answer to pain is love.

today that feels hard to accept.   my fault

I think not being open for love to enter me.

       do you notice, pain only begins from inside.

come water waves, wash into me.   my prayer.

and now I remember another man who taught me prayer
       with his dying breaths.

       he’s now gone, but prayers remain.
 
 
 
how much ocean is in a spoon.   (a question, yes)
 
 
 
 
I can’t write poems any more.

this isn’t me writing this.   if words appear, don’t blame me.

if I can become empty enough, maybe ocean will arrive.

I pray to be a better bowl.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
MBA webcam views of Monterey Bay used with permission.
please visit and/or support the Monterey Bay Aquarium.   
they make the ocean more alive.   us too.

please do enlarge the header image.
 
 
 
 
 

the meaning of this is


moon.   one third leaning right.    the moon sees everything.
 
 

 
 
 
 
I live inside a poem.

right here.   this one.

the one you’re reading.   right now.

     look again if you don’t believe in moons.
 
 
 
we pretend we can’t see each other.
     we can.
 
 
 
everything I see, I see from here.
 
 
every curve you draw.
every voice you make.
every motion a finger inscribes.
children taller than parents are.
every breath.

each word.   you know some of them.
each ray of Sun fallen onto the floor.   feelings gravitate.

     dreams of slow gathering.
     a cradle with a cat sleeping inside.
 
 
when prey’s life is inside a predator’s mouth
beauty is described by taste more than by hoof.

     is change merely a different us?

     are we just bigger than before?
 
 
     I don’t like question marks.
 
 
 
when I die I’d like to be Summer, maybe Spring,
as far front-faced to the Sun as possible.

     something with a big Sss sound.
 
 
for us human folk, process matters more than result.
join us here laying in the Savannah shade beneath a tree.

     sometimes a meal will come to those who wait.
 
 
     I want to use the word, delicious.

don’t think I don’t like the austere spaces in-between the words.   I do.

there, did you see that movement in the grass.   (not a question)

     (proceed)
 
 
I don’t so much choose the words I eat as simply say yes when they arrive.

hold my hand inside the stalking moon’s eye.   please.
 
 
 
what we are is, observable.   a moon can see us.   anyone can.
 
 
says the moon.   dont’cha know I am never far from you.

floating in your hand.
 
 
all of life painted there.     colors.     see.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
notes beside my feet.

initiating quote, by MERRILDSMITH in comment to artist/poet Kerfe.
and notice how so many leave words of music behind where they go.
the moon sees everything, a small yet right thing to say.

small observation for the eyes.   moon scene, found before intended.
suggest click the image to enlarge, then a second time too as the image
is rather large so each expansion is something of a visual waking-up.
     maybe a delight.