Nagoshi no Harai* On the Beach

   
   into these salty cold
   yet saline warm waves
   i plunge
   i meet the full weight of these giant sea swells
   with my one body
   my body that tastes this world through skin bare
   skin exposed to light and to winds
   through soft bone marrow
   steeped in the red soil of this earth
   my body that loves
   with its small fist-sized heart
   pounding ceaselessly still—like these deep ocean currents
   inside this unfathomable depth
   inside this unnameable mystery
   inside this place of darkness where light cannot reach nor enter

   i meet the full weight of these giant sea swells
   i plunge
   i surrender my one body
   to life

*Nagoshi no harai 夏越の祓い is the name of a mid-summer purification ritual conducted at shrines in the end of June in Japan. We walk through a large circle constructed of grass and make a pattern in the shape of the number eight, or the infinity symbol.

Viennese Waltz 88

in the arms of the sun
i lose myself to this world
spinning around and around and
     around
inside this open sky blue
and here
here in these arms of the sun
time alone    
                          stands still

diamonds

bewitched by the light
on this long road of diamond dust
i dream endlessly

rainbows

warm sunlight kisses
all my tears and hurt away
levitating rainbows

rain

my heart 
today 
has no words 
only rain

The above photo is of a short poem titled “rain” from a collection of poems I published last year. It’s designed to reflect both the way Japanese language is traditionally written—right to left and top to bottom—as well as the way rain itself falls.

After hearing of the recent tragic mass shooting of children at an elementary school in Texas, I’ve been searching for something to offer this world with its incomprehensible sorrows. Surely there could be even just a few words to lighten the burden, ease the pain, to bring some kind of solace… After all, my poetic raison d’être of sorts is: crafting stories for a more beautiful and gentle world. I intentionally seek to illuminate beauty, love and light, even in the midst of our suffering… particularly in light of suffering, in light of the shadows. Words are my gift to this world, the flower of my heart I offer upon the alter.

But in these past days of searching, words firmly elude me. The strength to pick up scattered shards of my heart, eludes me. My body breaks down when thoughts are senseless and prayers echo, empty—again. In this paralysis of humanity, the little children are dying. What words can possibly carry meaning now? And so I, empty-handed, crave the rain.

I crave the rain. Let it fall, in torrents. Tears for all the little children. May it flood, a river over embankments of ammunition…. ammunition forged in outdated weapon-making factories, and in the defenses of ideological identity and warfare. May it rain for seven days and seven nights straight so that even the most guarded among us will finally seek refuge in the arms of another. May the relentless downpour drown out delusions of grandeur and bring all the mighty gods to their knees. And in the very end, may all the little children delight in the puddles—splashing about and dancing—carefree. Rainbows overhead. In the very very end, may all the little children simply be—children.

your name

have you heard it before?
the land as it whispers
the voice of soft soil underneath
soles—bared to the earth
calling
calling out your name
in the wind in the wild wild wind
and singing
between canyon walls
and among the tall and slender reeds,
your name

Come, come home — it says —
into my arms stretched out open and wide, and into
my heart.

and i run
i run right into this wild wind
without resistance
as these whispers of land and soft sacred soil
singing
sing straight into my heart
and i run 
and run right into these waiting arms
into this heart
i run, i run and run and run
i run
home

nectar

do not try
not for a moment, not a heartbeat
not even for a second, split
to resist
even the multitudinous gods cannot
and absolutely care not
to resist
The Sweetness
Nectar
nectar is
honey on the tongue
diaphanous light like
diamonds underwater
sparkling
champagne for the immortals
and libations for
the hummingbirds and the butterflies
wine, for the soul

epilogue two

i dance to breathe
      and 
breathe to dance
             to fly
             to fly
to my sun
i dance
              in the light, and
on the light feather of the hawk
so swift   so soft   and so
f i e r c e 
  i fly
             to my sun burning
on fire
burning brightly
and,     oh so lightly
on these skins, these mountain skins
          and i breathe 
     i breathe
i breathe to dance 
                    dance to breathe
                                            here 
   between heaven and 
here
between heaven and this 
                                                                       earth

Flower Power

Beauty is Love’s Flower

Preamble: This is the first time to upload a video to my blog post, and it is entirely the work of my iPhone which voluntarily made it for me! 🤣 But fortuitously and synchronistically so. I’d been wondering what one photo could capture the rich abundance of flowers and my phone spontaneously offered me this little photo montage. Thank you, iPhone! 😁

What makes you flower?
Like the stunningly vast array of flowers, what makes each one of us flower or thrive may indeed be very distinct. The needs of a pink water lily are not the same as those of golden gazanias. Where one would flourish, the other would simply wither away. But all flowers need the same elementals: some particular mixture of sun and sky, water, soil and minerals.
What is yours? Your optimal mix of elementals? The personal ecology that brings out your soul to shine? Are you flowering? What do you need to flower and to flower more?
What is your Flower Power?

embodied

have you ever felt that?
Earth—in your body,
breathing...
a sweet sigh, and then a swift intake
what song does she sing
passing through your skin
your surface 
soft, light, and open 
dancing here
under this boundless sky?
to whom
or to what absolute and singular love
does she serenade? 

The above “photo-poem” was made when I was still placing print on top of photos and unfortunately, I don’t have the original photo now. I also haven’t been able to recapture the same feeling—the same ineffable sensation of breathing—in another photo. But perhaps on some mysterious, sweet, and softly lit day, I will again find the perfect set of trees and sky, breathing.

Have you experienced something similar? A discovery of the world breathing through your body? Or your body breathing through the extended world around you? In this physically embodied realization of connection, we discover that we ourselves are love. Love itself. Nothing other than love. We discover oneness and totality, beauty and grace. Hózhó. An absolute and singular love.