Wednesday, November 24, 2010

This soundless morning

This soundless morning,

mid-month, November’s

clear-bright days

call the furnace to life,

wood-smoke whiffs to the sky,

and as our bodies adjust

to the change of clocks,

birds wake and fly

with the light

—this soundless morning.


in service of song…

chill crinkles the morning air

like water speaking of ice

a pitch beyond the reach of sound

yet not of that of heart-mind

and so we who are called to song

are turned as such

in the posture of service


For Eiko

Let’s chant, she says,

then go home.

We do.


Certain prayers remembered

Books hold to the shelves, the shelves

in place with the weight of what’s held—no ideas

but in things, it’s been said, as fingers

trace the page aside the words inscribed,

fleeting moments of sound-meaning, so concrete

as to belie both flash and forgetfulness,

always returning

with light.

Every morning, awakening,

things returning the lighted day, lighting the day

anew, the world made new,

returning reawakened.

He thanks this light, his life, the poet, with words,

the weight of the passing now,

whispers on the breath of gladness,

wrinkles about the eyes.


Approaching Buckeye Canyon…

San Bruno Mountain’s

crows, sun-lit pines,

hawks circle shaded slopes

of crystal-toothed sandstone

opened wide

with ancient song...



in shadowed branches

against the blue


Only Buddha remembers

Sitting in fading light,

recollections like so many leaves.

Once forgotten seasons

do not return, but for Mind.

My teachers

having given everything,

even permission to neglect

the little I’ve held.

And the hours pass.


First companion, best friend.

Without her purposefulness,

what might be said

of this life?


At play in fields of light and shadow,

the acacia receives and reveals

the manifold mysteries of language,

the play of the silence and sound

of the human heart-mind.