The Past

There was once a place

Where the mountain breaks the softness of sunrise

Where fishermen sing while tending their nets

Where I grew up,

The narrow streets and old houses play in my sleep

People meander and talk at sunset

On Saturdays a farmer’s market

Filled with animated visitors.

I miss the place.

The past is part of the present

I will understand happiness 

Depends on differences of small things

Will make sense later

I am fit not from running

But from gardening

I want you to come with me

And visit this place

You are a good listener.

The future 

Can be full of chatter.

I become too familiar

With the world around 

There are possibilities

We can laugh together.

Walking

your eye catches 

light’s reflection on a spider web

a hammock hanging between 

a tree and fence

neurons interlaced to strengthen memory

a bridge for retrieval and deep learning

atoms, stars, horrors 

of war, how to be a shepherd

the interlacing of flowers, 

spices and herbs in a garden

flowers complementing appearances

and passion

plants to engender savory taste and texture

a simple life prepared a table of elegance

you resume walking

each step echoes

music of Beethoven, imaginative spark of 

Virginia Wolff’s stream of consciousness

to express  an exhilarating day.

Morning Walk

58, cloudy, low tide

a woman and her daughter run

a dog runs with a red ball in his mouth 

he drops intermittently to keep up with his master 

A grandma pushes a stroller

two other children walking and talking

vultures hoover, ducks hurry on the river

My morning walk to the river

find excitement in the moment

experience the goodness of the earth

The Root of All Things

A man measures the distance between the trees

The distance of the trees from the path

The distance of the trees from the river

He looks at the sky

His mind can roam infinitely

“Leaving behind unilateral view of things”

Man is not the root of all things

He is not the measure of all things

He finishes his work

Returns home where he tends goats

And bees and grows a garden

He is the village philosopher.

A battered penny among the flowers

New Ambition

Clattering sound of falling kitchen pans brushes aside her reverie 

Her eyes fix on the sea

Fog distorts perception of distance, silence ushers thinking confidently 

She adjusts herself in the writing table

With a new  ambition

She writes, her fingers trembling with words.

Evening crickets will summon her to sleep

The rooster will wake her before dawn

Seldom she considers to stray outside these boundaries

Her stories wanting to be heard

Like mute feelings suddenly freed from captivity

How to express the river’s yearnings

The delicate exposure of what is hidden

Abundant play before learning the alphabets

The forest changes, weather comes with seasons

She feels fresh facing open spaces, the deep and simple questions, enhancement and pruning

The mysteries of truth and moments of need

Finding her way in intricacies of language

If she has nothing to say, she stays silent.

She may play her violin in front of the llamas

Or she may hold the cat close to her chest

Hum a melody to its ear

Don’t let desire turn to dreaming and fades

Even when distance dims

She has to consider the end

What is meaningful to her

To flourish the goodness life

And encourage herself to cultivate 

Habits of the heart.

Ancient Habit

A thought 

awaken you from velleity

a summon to bear fruit

you lace your shoes

you start walking, an ancient habit

fresh persuasion of open air,

feelings of space and seeing

the outdoors, vast and hospitable, 

slopping hills 

you bravely ascend steps, 

carefully accelerate descent

blistered heels and suffering knees,

and muscle burns

temporary distractions,

hesitation gradually fades

one step at a time, the trodden way

strength prospers and optimism lifts

exhilaration and healthy elements

you huddle a new circle, your kindred:

sway of stride, unhurried banter, 

their voices twinkle in greetings

you don’t have to

but you keep a journal 

the notches, tiny achievements

nourishing pastoral scenes, 

joy of jotting experiences

the long walks

you observe the olympians, 

their constancy

you wonder how they do it

the focus, the intensity

the magnitude of sacrifices

you weigh yours in gratitude

you try to understand, 

is there time to exult or console

you are in your eighties

you dare to disturb life expectancy

in full measure.