living inside a word

       an epic poem in few words

       contraindicated some poets say
not what a word means, but who means it.

made friends with a few brick walls learning that.

who loves me?   raise your hands.

OK.   no hands.   let me explain.

there is a bowl.   two hands cupped.   see.

they nourish me when they can.   when they’re full.

but the thing about nourishment, obvious isn’t it,

what nourishes is something anything outside myself.

If Wishes Were Horses, she said it first.   me next.

used to be, I was a grump about being likable.

collective likable.   you know, like I write from heart,

maybe I work for hours, finding rightmost words for you.

then not even the word, but an empty box, liked?
you understand – don’t mean much to me.

blah blah blah.   me speaking historically.

then this writer rider I deeply admired, she’d like me.

it was not the same.   one finger touch, can move a world.

the right finger.   who it’s connected to.

now that’s also what I mean.   me.   sincere.   meaning

I’ve been here.   with you.

these hands, second page

these hands would be humble touching you.
these hands keep few secrets, like mirrors don’t.

red for my heart.   luminous where stars are inside.

these hands are a map.   all the sacred terrain, grown to this.

they have guided sails into wind.   have given up coins when asked.

have rowed a boat.   have been fish in the sea.

have felt water and wind and earth and sky.

they have scribbled poems on yellow paper.

these hands will find their way in the dark.

have held a dying mother’s hand.   not sad.

they will guide you home.   again.

these hands wrote their own history, so they say.

these hands have a mother and a father.

pockets.   maybe that’s where I put them last.

they are the hands I have earned.

scraped, bruised, made to bleed, nearly broken.

they’ve met forever several times.

         then you came along.   rivers do bend.

gravity because

gravity loves.   each and every one

       of us.    no hesitation.

gravity makes earth breathing.

gravity guides waters into the sea.

gravity teaches ocean how to make legs.

gravity walks then floats then flies.

gravity joins earth and sea.

gravity navigates inside doors.

gravity sees almost forever.

gravity smiles when listening.

gravity lets you know how tall you are.

gravity sleeps with you when your eyes

       are closed.

gravity knows the word, embrace.
gravity and I are close friends.

like a shadow is.   you know.

sewn together at the heels.
a perfect thread.

 : )


      what makes me who I am.

I love this motion, approaching you.   unchanging,
      my dear heart.   standing still.

your feathers like wheat stubble on your skin.   here
      I lay down, no more thought.   gratitude.
      you nourish me.
sweetness, how my feet know the touch of you.
      nothing comforts me more.

one thumb can say it all.   new language, here
      you teach to me.   whisper me.

      raining me.   head over heels.

I tumble.   then here I am, this close to you.

you make me real.   like sky.   I am filled.

embracing me.
image:   via Bridgette Tales, 52 Photo Challenge, Week 8 – Negative Space,
        and used with her kind permission.    please click image to enlarge.
yes, more like water than you might think.   (patience please)

AMA – a short film by Julie Gautier

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.

I am this much

     it could be any afternoon
I am a poem.   so are you.

I stand alone.   you stand beside me here.

I am a book.   I write words.   I mean more than that.

I am an only son.   I am first.   I am last.

I am a student on a yellow bus.

I was young.   I have memory.   I remember you.

I remember loving you.   true, for better, for worse.

I do the best I can.   seriously.

I refuse to fight.   past and present tense.

I drove a red pickup truck.   I smile when I can.

I have rescued people.   I’ve been rescued.

I am older than before.

I am broken inside.

I love.   I eat.   I sleep.   my life.

I swim.   the ocean is one home.

I am the center of a universe.   one of them.

I am the salt in my blood.

I sleep both more and less than I might.

I am a friend.   I am loyal.   I’m not the best.

I try to be who I am.   I am me anyway.

I am tall.   I am short.

I am soft spoken.   I am persistent.

I endure.   for now.

I love you.   that is the best of me.   of all of us.

I remain.   I will go away.

I love you.   I have nothing better to say.


another reason for light

Principles of Structural Chemistry
a leaf is the way a tree grows a glove.

they lay on the grass, side by side.

telling one from another is more desire
              than composition.
we are all gatherings of light,
look see, bubbles, that’s what we are.

bubbles with shells all the way around.

the concept beauty is inside the eyes.
we look around to find it, like we do

old thoughts.       old buildings.
much the same.       some of them gone.

you don’t expect when things change.
they change like choice, bigger than me.

lanterns.       flames follow wind.       light
follows that.

an explanation would be, being blind.
instead.       gratitude.

a thousand thousand lights.

another day.       and you.

another moon.


matters much


the Dalai Lama told me so.

do I think it matters, but not for me.

no question marks.   not empirical.

a process of relationship.   like

the moon, the earth, like sky, like

my hand.   like a white butterfly.

shall I worry for the trail thirty

minutes behind me now.   will

I return.   would it be the same.

the better wish, will it remember

me.   as I now remember, there.
I used to be as big as the universe.

and will be, again.   no fare,


it’s all gone inside.   that’s the part

the Dali Lama said to me.

in a dream, didn’t I say.   just like

right now.   loving you.
there, that’s the part I always want

to keep.
in his honor

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet


how a butterfly feels



              feels like dying, being alive.
    this poem, what did it look like when
    it was a first birth.   not a question.

              stepping stones.   after all.
    here there is a room.   there is a desk.
    four walls and a roof.   oh yea, a floor for my feet.

              wonder.   is a pinnacle.

    it’s the second floor above.   desktop, two arms reach.
    garden where there isn’t roof.   letters under fingertips.

    a fence, a gate.   sometimes snow.   listening.
              all I mean.
              it is more than me.
    a road, feet on stone.   quietly.

    random noises.   make far and near.   I’m not the center.
              even when it feels that way.
    these raining words, more kind than me.   more better.
    more stronger.      more loving.

    more astonished.

    mostly so.   that they find my fingers eagerly.
    it is a blessing.    after all.


writing meditation

                            does ordinary count?
how’s that look?   no crossed legs.
       go ahead.
       scratch that itch.   no rules.

       listen.   yea, do that.
under the carpet.   right where I stand.   no Tibet.

hidden in plain sight?   no.   in front of my face.
       hidden, same as is the sky.

eyes closed.   that’s how I hide myself.
mouth open.   waiting for words to arrive.   taller than me.
thoughts circle.   eating their tails.   pleading thoughts.
but here’s one choice.

       let go.

       same like falling is.   same like flying is.

better grace.   knowing how to find my self.
better.   finding me inside my stance.
nothing to do.  nothing, already arrived.

empty space has a face.

       yours, I recognize.

pointless.   elliptical.   listening.
appreciation grants harvesting.
       prescribed, she says to me.

am I audible?

that’s my prayer.
no matter.    but yes.

I remember now.    loving.    you.

2022.12.24 r 1