Where One Learns as What One Learns

Unknown

 

My old tai chi master

watched his students

study their college texts,

then laughed explosively

into the silence

of the courtyard,

our open air dojo.

We all looked up

like gazelle’s scenting

the air. He laughed

again, then said,

“There should be a book

on how to watch clouds.”

We looked at him quizzically.

“All it would say

on every page—

Look Up!”

 

(August 28, 2018)

Rothko Chapel: a meditation

BD1_9731

 

like stepping into a still pool

deep in a primal cave—

you slip into this silence:

 

the light breathes, a liquid

luminescence, in slow

arrhythmic breaths,

 

and you are changed—

you see what you want

to see; desire, fear, hope

 

flicker across the surface

like faces of the dead,

hesitant and fleeting

 

until you see only your self

stripped of all significance

 

(July 2, 2018)

Minnows

fish-pedicure

 

Metaphor turns all

to itself. I am no more

the subject, than I

am the object. Like Delphic

seers speak god’s voice,

the poem moves through me—

changing itself like air

moving slowly across grass.

 

As a child I’d dangle

my feet in Clark’s creek.

Minnows nibbled my toes

cautiously; I’d sit still

as god listening to prayers

happy in my boredom.

 

(June 6, 2018)