Tuesday, October 17, 2006

This Moment: October 17th, 2006.

Autumn grasses
Originally uploaded by Barca_Branca.

Today would have been our 19th anniversary. Instead we shared a phone call that lasted something under three minutes. I am also waiting to hear from a dear friend who is sitting by the bedside of her 90 year old mother. When will Olga pass? And to add to this, the day is once again and even more so- rainy.

Still, I am dry and rather cozy here at work. But I find that today is a day that seems to emphasize that “Knowledge resides from the neck up, wisdom from the neck down.” (Adyashanti)

I work mechanically today and cannot bare the intellectually exciting. It seems a time to live from the neck down. Not that I feel at all that wise, but rather today I choose to feel. Let me get my information that way today.

So, I went hunting poems. I found these two by Jane Hirshfield. The first gives a nod to the whole yin yang of creation. The later simply gives me faith to keep on walking.

Poem With Two Endings

Say "death" and the whole room freezes--
even the couches stop moving,
even the lamps.
Like a squirrel suddenly aware it is being looked at.

Say the word continuously,
and things begin to go forward.
Your life takes on
the jerky texture of an old film strip.

Continue saying it, hold it moment after moment inside the mouth,
it becomes another syllable.
A shopping mall swirls around the corpse of a beetle.

Death is voracious, it swallows all the living.
Life is voracious, it swallows all the dead.
neither is ever satisfied, neither is ever filled,
each swallows and swallows the world.

The grip of life is as strong as the grip of death.

(but the vanished, the vanished beloved, o where?)


More and more I have come to admire resilience.
Not the simple resistance of a pillow, whose foam returns over and over to the same shape, but the sinuous tenacity of a tree: finding the light newly blocked on one side,
it turns in another.
A blind intelligence, true.
But out of such persistence arose turtles, rivers, mitochondria, figs--all this resinous, unretractable earth.

Here's one more poem, as I cannot resist. This one tucks you in and brings you home to silence, which is where you eventually come to rest, if you choose to stay right in the moment.

Recalling A Sung Dynasty Landscape

Palest wash of stone-rubbed ink
leaves open the moon: unpainted circle,
how does it raise so much light?
Below, the mountains
lose themselves in dreaming
a single, thatch-roofed hut.
Not that the hut lends meaning
to the mountains or the moon--
it is a place to rest the eye after much traveling, is all.
And the heart, unscrolled,
is comforted by such small things:
a cup of green tea rescues us, grows deep and large, a lake.