'Did it take long to find me?' I asked the faithful light.
'Did it take long to find me?  And, are you gonna stay tonight?'

Thank you.
And, to the other little lights as well.

Is this part of what he (and Campbell) had mentioned?  That we are creating our own mythology?
Either way, I'll choose to appreciate the times when, after sending my request into the earth, the universe meets me in a way that I can recognize.

Today, my favorite lyrics are from "Moonshadow" by Cat Stevens.  It just occurred to me today that maybe 老子 would have also been amused.


The game between the game

Following a prompt from a friend on a better way to practice this:

I am playing a new game of seeing the negative space.
Seeing the thing as outlined by the not-thing.
Noticing the distances that make things what they are by the nature of the separation.
Seeing the thing as being the outline of the not-thing.
When I write, outlining the not-thing with the thing.
Acknowledging the decisions not made, the roads not traveled, the silence between by which sounds are defined.

The quiet into which what I don't plan can grow.

The world feels much more comfortably full,
when I acknowledge even the stories that don't speak.

The Human Achievement

I'm listening to Viktor Frankl's Man's Search For Meaning on Audible.
It's the background and description of his school of thought in psychiatry called "logotherapy".

I like the way he describes the "human achievement" as that which a person may produce from a given "predicament".

Turning predicament into a human achievement is the manner in which all people are necessarily artists.  Like any art, it can be practiced, stylized, and honed into a truly respectable craft.

In everything, the uniquely human potential is to paint that layer of perception, interpretation, and chosen response upon the canvas of situation with which we are presented.

It is the art of acknowledging and working with what we cannot change to produce, create, or accept what we can.  We may or may not consider it to be successful, but it is this layer of perception and response that would not arise in any other way, and thus, in its uniqueness, is a human achievement.

I am reminded of the quote at the beginning of Steinbeck's Cannery Row.
And Joyce's Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.

continue (meaning of life resolved, next question please)

Walking the evening streets of Shanghai,

Harbin beers in hand,

(considering the All as an informational map in 1s and 0s
the "things" that we know as selected groupings of those,
and a human drive to uncover meaning like an algorithm tasked with revealing its own code)

is as good a place as any

to be reminded that one's "purpose" in life is to be,

to be uniquely,

and so being,


Thank you.


Fits and Stops and starts

Looking back at my own posts, not finding what I wanted.
Surprised at what I did find

including silence.

The posts, huddled in time around gaping empty spaces
craters. Trying to grow again before the next carves out its due.

Posts drafted in my head that I don't see - flags of thought I wish I'd thrown in time.
I see comments I wish I'd known about, responded to
Perhaps from others trying to walk across this same slippery stream
the stepping stones are many, but the water deep.
The breaths come few and far between.

Though I hope that others understand,
I know that really, I address myself in saying:

Please forgive the silence
it's not that I've been drowning
but all the work at breathing
makes it awful hard to speak.

At least,
I know the taste of air
I know when I'm awake
The struggle is for the next breath of consciousness
every time I slip and plunge
as I make my way across this river dream

I am ashamed at the ways I betray my own progress
but the way ahead is still forward
My previous steps, though unsteady, inconsistent, drive me from the past to start again
and on I go


Home Burial

I'm sad that I'll never be able to talk with my grandfather about "Home Burial" by Robert Frost.   But, maybe I'll be able to find something in his research or class notes about it some day.

I recently learned that my grandmother says that my grandfather says that this poem said it all.
He taught it to his students.

I'd read it once before, and I didn't get it.

I just read it again,
and I get it (or, at least much much more of it)
But, too late.


role reversal?

Seems that it is possible to change places without changing roles

إن شاء الله

the splash of liquid diamonds in the night sky

the commas, pause for breath, 'midst poetry

fresh dewdrops awakening, perched atop the grass

light rain of tears rebounding up unheard from dust and puddles

the scratch of drumming surfaces that beat a rhythm

flightpath of birds on their way to the throne room

hoofprints of Pitzeem's mare

the dirt in the field flying out behind Badger's hind claws

the wink of gleaming stardust settling behind rocky peaks in a yellowing dawn


The Globe Theater was ringed by lamps with reflective shades that cast the light upon the stage.

Do you see good things in the world?  Since everything is a mirror, the goodness you see around you is a reflection of yourself.  Find your inner lightbulb, and twist it to aim the light back on yourself until you also feel the warmth.

crawling out of bed

It occurs to me in words that one of the most important abilities of a victim is first, to know when one is being victimized and when one isn't; and second, to know the source of the threat.

 If one is being victimized without knowing, this descends into an awful twilight swamp of partial humanity. If one is not being victimized, but feels otherwise, this brings that nightmare into waking life.

If one can identify the source of the threat, then one knows whether or not the swamp comes from oneself. Try to find that door and shut it. Anticipated, unverified threats from others have no place in one's internal world.

 Since the reality is that all humans should be able to expect to be treated with dignity and respect, to live knowing otherwise is a kind of nightmare. Even if conscious, it is a world that isn't real.
 This ... Dream.

morning sun rises

people are actually pretty cool

most of them are really interesting,
and are actually not trying to impose on me, get something from me, or judge/criticize/shame me.

I feel like I just woke up from an unsettling nightmare
It's morning and the sun is shining
The people outside are familiar in a normal way.
I shall practice again expecting commonly expectable things
when did I start dreaming?
I would like to remember this feeling of waking up twice.
And, not to return to that dream.


Longing and Patience and a dialogue in definitions


The centrifugal rise of your heart in your chest every time you come around to check for no new news.

The upreached compass arm
not willing to release
the fix'd foot
'round which it paces


The even space between my breaths
that is the same as every other space


The heart of the Earth for the Sun


The constant speed with which it pursues - rotating so that each face in turn may have a glimpse

The tide awaits the moon.


The ocean swell which keeps its face upturned
Following even onto land
until the strength
(though not the will)
is broken by the rocks


The Sun sees his reflection in the Moon
which the Moon shares with Earth in his apparent absence

The same day as lights the other side of Earth
is painted gently on our own night sky

The buildings are not interested - their light clamors too loud
But mountains, trees, and old stones still await the news
and someday the buildings will die down.

كلام معك ~ انا بحب مصر

Sometimes I'm not sure if it's you
or if it's the dry sun I feel the heat of through your words.  The dust, the carts,
donkeys on strong, tiny ankles
the hot dust quenched by thick and cool and maybe sour orange mango juice -

the bakeries with their tiny breads - ~ the yellow cardstock rectangle from Ramses Station, the heavy, knotted rope slamming courtyard playground floor,
the light gleaming off of Leonardo's guitar
the cool dark of that tomb among the pyramids, the giant blocks, the men with camels and cameras,
the sunset on the Nile and football...

I wonder if it's you, or this flap of silver-white and teal
wings of the bird of time that I want so much to glimpse again
and to tell me
flitting above desert streams
that it's ok
to forget

Though I know
We all must lift each other up by sharing what we know

At any rate,
if you do come,
I'll find mint for tea
and ask you how many spoonfulls of sugar?  two? or three?

freewriting -

Is writing time always going to be
10 - 11 - 12 - too late?

Will it always wait for that
liminal state
between day and
delayed desire for morning?

the farthest from my eyes
my tired mind and I
gaze into darkened pooling of the
night gathering
therin we glimpse reflection
of the day
and paint with ink.

painted in ink -
an ink that comes from between the stars
above the lands where day is clearest
spreads the whole sun across the sky

The lunar glow is not from one radiant source
It reminds us to share
there is no glare in her light

We breathe with borrowed breath
our hands
on loan from ashes
Eyes gently receiving the light that
from one source
funds us only after first touching others

The moon reminds us of this by her example
/remember you are not the true source/
And her beauty is not diminished
And in the gathered-cloak night sky
I see the kaleidoscopic gleam
still painted with the broad-brush silver river of their time snaked 'cross the sky
of a billion distant
ancient days

soon to be eclipsed by our own
When Helios closes the door of day behind him
He opens the Sky to the hall of his brothers'

The moon
unblinded by her own
reflects it all
a luminescent cool silk sheet
upon the face of Earth