Lives of Others

An orphan she has 

Few stories to tell, few attachments

How could she show passion,

Or care for someone

But she knows where ripe plums are, 

Which mushrooms are edible

Where to find spring water, safe and crystal clear

How to be resourceful

Habit and prudence and street smart

She starts learning the constellations,

Learns how to be afraid and be calm

She looks at the flowering vines,

Sleeps like an owl and wakes up 

To her full height, realizes

Distances between trees, between her

And trees, her and others

She is a distance of her own.

Things she cherishes, go away

Teaches her gratitude.

Her beautiful eyes say, thank you.

note: The book I’m reading: Ten keys to Reality by Frank Wilczek.

I will have surgery on my right ear next week. The discomfort is tolerable at the present time.

Sometimes I have to take some analgesics.

LIFE TRAVELS

Traveling for so many days

435 bridges and 234 tunnels

Losing landmarks and diverting to side excursions

A lavish description of arriving somewhere

After getting lost

Like newlyweds entering their first house

Whatever the sizable differences are 

They can be traced to algorithms

Like sentences they have to learn because they are new

After awhile they can talk and understand

The end is an accomplishment

Carried by patience and time.

They are foreign to each other

Like a blinding snowstorm before beginning of summer

Afterwards seasons go uninterrupted, seem seamless

Though there are days of grief

Some days of longing, others of mirth

Ambiguity eases into familiar themes

They arrive to a place they understand

Life changes gradually into bliss

Remembering words of Aristotle

We yearn to reach the good at the end.

CHOICES

“Joy like a river in her soul”, words of a young boy

Sharing his mother’s state of being. 

A town nestled next to a river

How does one tear down and build anew?

River dredging begins Flood Control Master Plan.

Town awakens, sounds of bulldozers and cranes, 

People wearing helmets working

Design to demolish, preserve, develop, convert

Empty complexes, aging structures, dormant land 

Long deliberations in what the town needs:

Hotels, shops, restaurants, or something abstract

Community park in summer turns flood diversion space in winter.

Building a promenade on riverfront, 

Passageway along railroad tracks,

Connecting Vine Trail, continuity without impediments

Collaboration with artists and role of the arts,

A time for coffee and twisted cinnamon rolls.

One accent, the Passages, a segment of passageway 

Once a haven for graffiti’s passion and restlessness

Now a channel for artistic expressions,

Vivid, vibrant, living project

Come, look, linger, get involve.

Walking home I hum a Dave Brubeck’s tune

I prepare smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwich, 

A bowl of peach yogurt and blackberries for lunch.

I take my time. I do not eat with haste.

Like town dreamers, like my friends

I, too, have choices and concerns

Should I join the frenzy of high technology

Pulsing reminders of “constantly possible productive moments”

Or walk with artists and pilgrims in shared humanity

Learn value of life, bear the task, persevere?

In my solitary walk, my mind can’t remain still

How will the young boy paint the river?

Let image follow imagination like spells of delight

Art’s idea whispers, shouts, bends then leaps to clarity

A journey of praise of what one truly loves.

In art and life, one will leave one day, the other stays.

I will write my praise.

Musings on Sunday After Christmas

Hide in a shelter of trees in the woods and listen to avian conversations, sweet songs and chatter

Serenades in chants of love songs, birds flirting, time phrases

Simultaneous displays of affection

When evening comes, lie down on the meadow to ease you muscle aches and back discomfort

Watch the stars appear ten by ten until you can’t count them anymore

Your brain nudges the hammock of neural synapses connecting lifelines of attention and comfort

The fragrance of grass, beauty of flower garlands open your senses to a new chemistry

The body is intelligent in an unknown way and know what to subtract and add in wholesome well being before you yourself knows what’s happening.

Open space embrace with soothing air and mountain views like a sanctuary as if nature is speaking to you. And understand emotionally what the birds are singing. The secret is not what you imagine but what you feel.

You know you will need tremendous courage to follow your own rules.

Some songs and calls are fading

The birds are facing extinction

Encroachment in their habitats or human neglect

The birds chant offers a sense of place and time and peace

We are losing the outdoors richness when our winged friends leave or die.

Don’t abandon the birds, they are helpless pretty creatures and friends

If you don’t answer your questions you have to find one who can. Don’t presume you are the first one to ask.

Vulnerability

The story, in the telling, sounds unreal like a dream,she is there,

She is telling it like it’s presently evolving,happening in real time,

not extracting it from memory

To rise again when all striving seems to have been all exhausted is a man of honor and courage. I can aspire to be that man who participates.

First let me wash the the dishes. Unclean sink does not promise a good dish. A hungry man does not mean he does not wants to eat a delicious dish. 

Brene Brown says “vulnerability is not a weakness “. Vulnerability is like a tire that has to pass all kinds of terrain to show real character, it’s resilience.

Mrs. Abstract and I and with two of our friends went to Spain last year. We visited Sagrada Familia in Barcelona.

A Letter

Avoidance of annoyances repeatedly

Life remains in narrowed preferences

I know some words to add, some experiences 

To relate, must not let them fade away

I open my eyes in the morning

Utter my first intelligent thought

A praise may be or a prayer

To see, not necessarily to understand

Not inquisitive but to experience

Is it too late now to find the reason

For not knowing?

My relationship ends unexpectedly

Without any arguments or strained voices

A decent separation, not devoting time

To keep each other’s attention

The dinner loses the delicious taste

We become monuments to each other.

Sometimes one has to cross a perilous river

To deliver a letter of forgiveness.

note: I finished reading Piranesi by Susanna Clarke and Kant’s Little Prussian Head & Other Reasons Why I Write, an autobiography in essays by Claire Messud.

I’m reading Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke which I started reading a long time ago but never finished and For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway. All these long reads in the time of Covid.

Once

We meet once in a farmer’s market

You are selecting a peach, I’m buying okra

Talk and walk and laugh

You spin a loom, I wield an ax

Gather, break, understand

Happy when together

A long beautiful day we wish each other

Before we wave goodbye

Cups of coffee and talks

Walks along the river

What is abstract 

A question of enchantment 

How do we measure 

Content or duration

And weight 

Are dimensions important?

Reflection

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Invent reality?

Is there a minimum of thought

One has to do everyday?

 

She is playing a guitar

and humming then singing

about ideas and consequences

then stops and starts writing furiously

“Examine your own courage

if you can get up every morning

with a better will than the day before?”

A cat comes, nozzles in her arms

She touches her with equal affection

then she looks at me and exclaims:

“Is it sad or meaningful or ostentatious to say—

I hiked Switzerland the whole summer?

Or I hug cows to relieve my stress?”

The cat jumps, goes to the window, sits purring.

 

Time folds, distorts harmony of living

Why bemoans the loss during the pandemic

Thousands are dying, millions lost their jobs,

thousands are lining up for food.

 

Time has changed unlike any other time:

A call for one another to stay together.