In Whistler, British Columbia, we speak with a young woman
native to these parts, who weaves designs from her grandfather’s blanket
(she points to its photo), itself woven for him with prayers and songs
and stories, by her great grandmother—“I come from this blanket,”
she tells us, “and weave only its designs.”
In our loose way, we use the term “sutra” to refer to Buddha’s teaching,
which over time came to be woven into words, on paper.
Pulled from the ancient Sanskrit, “sutra” is derived from the word for “thread.”
Victoria, British Columbia, May 2009
At the bus stop on the harbor
watching flags wait
glance and plume in morning sunlight
there gather so loosely
only to again fall
and fall again
Saw somewhere written
that the universe is a restless place.
Ah yes, and magnificently sloppy.
Home to the 2010 Winter Olympics
of whispering aspen leaves
Wade deeply early sunlight
in aspens’ layered leaves
the glistening glow
Straight lines and shingles lay where lighted sky used to play,
a place ill suited to the fullness that is real;
trapped, flat in shadows sharp with longing,
breathless and shallow, watching
passing breezes eddy.
Coming again to quiet possibility,
the place, lighted, as before,
only angles differing from what they were.
Brief as it seems,
most days the work begins
Crossing from Horse Shoe Bay to Nanamo on a full, Saturday ferry.
Bumping waters, a haze of whitened skies
and the flow of padded shoes; muted moves
carefully tended by turned heads and dropping eyes.
Time shared in place passing
us each, and alone, along our way.
A poem, for me,
I’ve come to see as a suggestion
then visited with, for a bit.
We sleep at times a bit too long
and dregs remain, slowing it seems
even the pull in the veins
a dirge like call into darkness not letting go,
and we slip there with it
where all are allowed to speak
and thus, to make our peace
and the praise that might make poems
is what I chose, careful
attention to all that comes
mingled with words