Thursday, May 06, 2010

Would-be Mashed Potatoes

Yesterday I posted something and then deleted it. It was a small story about last week's sesshin. Anyway, when I re-read it, I felt it trivialized something that was hugely important (to me), which is to say the whole sesshin experience. I just don't know how to write about it or even if I should. And so, delete, delete, delete.

Perhaps my change of heart and mind are reflective of how re-entry in to the rest of the world has been a little shaky for me this time. Sometimes when things open up, they expose a tender, raw place.

So, I offer you my version of blog comfort food.

Some yarn I spun as a commission - it is to be hair for a Living Dead Doll. I don't really know what Living Dead Dolls are, but this is the hair.

And this poem. Poems now arrive daily in my inbox. Carol kindly signed me up here and I have been enjoying them quite a bit. Not all are of equal quality but each is definitely worth reading. This one was a lovely surprise. Thought-provoking and beautiful, it also was written by a member of our sangha.

by Chase Twichell

Above the blond prairies,
the sky is all color and water.
The future moves
from one part to another.

This is a note
in a tender sequence
that I call love,
trying to include you,
but it is not love.
It is music, or time.

To explain the pleasure I take
in loneliness, I speak of privacy,
but privacy is the house around it.
You could look inside,
as through a neighbor's window
at night, not as a spy
but curious and friendly.
You might think
it was a still life you saw.

Somewhere, the ocean
crashes back and forth
like so much broken glass,
but nothing breaks.
Against itself,
it is quite powerless.

Irises have rooted
all along the fence,
and the barbed berry-vines
gone haywire.

Unpruned and broken,
the abandoned orchard
reverts to the smaller,
harder fruits, wormy and tart.
In the stippled shade,
the fallen pears move
with the soft bodies of wasps,
and cows breathe in
the licorice silage.

It is silent
where the future is.
No longer needed there,
love is folded away in a drawer
like something newly washed.
In the window,
the color of the pears intensifies,
and the fern's sporadic dust
darkens the keys of the piano.

Clouds containing light
spill out my sadness.
They have no sadness of their own.

The timeless trash of the sea
means nothing to me—
its roaring descant,
its multiple concussions.
I love painting more than poetry.

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