This unfinished business of my
this emerald lake
from my journey's other
haunts hierarchies of heavens
a palm forest
to make room for an unwanted
fevers and swellings
turn me into a river
- Etel Adnan
from The Spring Flowers Own
The Spring Flowers Own & The Manifestations of the Voyage
"Even if you're going to live three thousand more years, or ten times that, remember: you cannot lose another life than the one you're living now, or live another one than the one you're losing. The longest amounts to the same as the shortest. The present is the same for everyone; its loss is the same for everyone; and it should be clear that a brief instant is all that is lost. For you can't lose either the past or the future; how could you lose what you don't have?"
- Marcus Aurelius
One Source of Bad Information
There's a boy in you about three
Years old who hasn't learned a thing for thirty
Thousand years. Sometimes it's a girl.
This child had to make up its mind
How to save you from death. He said things like:
"Stay home. Avoid elevators. Eat only elk."
You live with this child, but you don't know it.
You're in the office, yes, but live with this boy
At night. He's uninformed, but he does want
To save your life. And he has. Because of this boy
You survived a lot. He's got six big ideas.
Five don't work. Right now he's repeating them to you
- Robert Bly
"What I have been thinking about, lately, is bewilderment as a way of entering the day as much as the work.
"The illuminati used flagellation, levitation and starvation as a method of accounting for the power of the invisible world over their lives. Public suffering and scars gave the evidence of hidden miseries which had begun to require daylight.
The poet uses words to do the same. From the lashes of whip and ink the secrets become common, rather than signs of individual genius.
After all, the point of art is to show people that life is worth living by showing that it isn't."
- Fanny Howe
an excerpt from a talk on the Poetics & Readings Series
Small Press Traffic at New College, San Francisco
Wallace Stevens and Mozart
Oh Wallace Stevens, dear friend,
You are such a pest. You are so sure.
You think everyone is in your family.
It is you and your father and Mozart,
And ladies tasting cold rain in Florence,
Puzzling out inscriptions, studying the gold flake.
It is as if life were a visit to Florence,
A place where there are no maggots in the flesh,
No one screaming, no one afraid.
Your job, your joy, your morning walk,
As if you walked on the wire of the mind,
High above the elephants; you cry out a little but never
As if we could walk always high above the world,
No bears, no witches, no Macbeth,
No one screaming, no one in pain, no one afraid.
- Robert Bly
"But what we call a "self" is actually just a story about our experience of life. And we construct the story because we're trying to give some order to what is actually a remarkably chaotic process. And then we get seduced by the seeming consistency of the story that we've constructed, and instead of just relating directly to our experience, we try to relate to our experience in terms of the story."
- Ken McLeod
"Just see, nothing is actually touching you when you just observe, when you don't say 'this should not be'. Pay attention to this wonderful power in you. Just witness without judgement, interference or attachment. Give it a chance."