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The Journey to the West

Though we journey to the West We pray to the East More or less that's the way Each day begins and ends It’s a tale everyone ...

Friday, March 24, 2017

Ode for the Balm of Gilead

The deeper and deeper
Into the moment you get
The more de-personified
Your awareness grows
Almost disembodied
As if it had transcended
The bicameral mind
And now lodged itself 
In a third hemisphere yet 
Unnamed and unflagged
But unflagging in its
Determination to maintain
A peaceful disposition

This is what
It means to
Think with
Your heart
Instead of
Your brain

Thursday, March 23, 2017

A Final Moment (or two) of Doubt

The if not now when
That I hear now and again
Does that count
As being in
The present moment
I wonder

The same way
I hear the same bird
Singing
Over and over

I get carried away
All too easily
By the slightest
Suggestion of spring
With the bird
Still singing and
The sunlight strafing me
On a frigid March afternoon

Even the hollow sound
Of the neighborhood kids
Playing out of doors
And the car door slamming
Not so far away
Can't help but
Remind me of all
The warmer days
Soon to come

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

For the Omphalos on the Supermarket Shelf

As if phalos
And omphalos
Decided to share
 A single self
The flower petal 
Streaked with green
Still throbbing with life
It constitutes an in-store
Display of the purest kind
A flower sermon delivered
There on the supermarket shelf

* * * * *

Photo by M. Bridge

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Same Storm Coming and Going

This afternoon I went out for a walk along Ponquogue Beach.  A chill wind was blowing in from the east in what could be the last of this winter's storms.  And it reminded me of this long running dispute between me and Marissa, one of those half-serious arguments that spans half our marriage.  She says a nor'easter is one of those storms that sweeps up the coast, originating in the Caribbean, and I say it's one of those that slams into us from the north Atlantic, the winds rising from the north east.

And of course, as with most such long running marital spats, we're both correct.  That's the very nature of the cyclonic effect of life.  Like any good marriage, it's two vectors coming together as part of the same storm, coming and going, the winds redoubled in size.


Friday, March 10, 2017

The Difference between a Poem and a Tweet

Sometimes it's hard to see much difference between a poem and a tweet. Character counts for everything. Best keep what's said short and sweet.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Between Blossom and Freeze

The changes in the weather are said to be extreme and so far this spring it’s been nip and tuck between blossom and freeze. I saw a crocus on the lawn this morning and then a little later discovered a rime of ice remained down by the Creek.
Encouraged by a warm west wind, the willow in my neighbor’s front yard began to glow this afternoon, the first real aureole and irreversible sign of spring -- a pale yellow fire fueled by the slanting rays of the afternoon sun. With the catkins' arrival it’s hard to believe tomorrow's forecast calls for 2 inches of snow and then a day or so later perhaps we will get to welcome the first daffodil. So the lion and lamb have muddled together as one.





Thursday, March 2, 2017

Poem for Early March

On the negative side
There's the problem
I've encountered recently
With the brussels sprouts
On the positive
I can think of
Well over a hundred
Things I feel truly
Grateful about
On this the second
Day of March
The Ides not being far behind
But already I find myself
Overwhelmed with love
For the earth again and
The unfolding campaign
To reclaim the garden



It really is a matter of commitment. Going along day by day, finally I got to the point where I realized there is no point in holding back any longer - today is the day I decided to declare the first day of spring here on Fourth Neck. (This is part of my responsibility as the self-proclaimed poet laureate for my littoral zone.) We had a heavy wind out here on Long Island but it was blustery and not cold - just the way a late March wind is supposed to blow. And then I noticed this hyacinth that had just about turned the corner and all but decided to bloom. And that's when I decided to write my first poem for this spring - the earliest date on which I have ever committed to do so up until this year.  As my friend Peter Rippon put it: boing boing ... here's to the spring.