Rainlight

Rainlight

I saw a world dawn today
That will never see another day
As sunlight streams through evaporating mist
Quivering pinpoint rainbow lights
Bejeweled spidersilk enmeshing forest green
Deep out to vanishing sight of glowing sky
Earth’s heaving bosom steaming rising light
To crystallize air fractured by bird calls
Overturning the ceaseless awakening
Pristine indifference to our thoughts
Of self-regarding nothingness grasping void
That disappears all wanting
And can never be all love
The solidity nothingness imagines
Even memories descendants are destined to forget
What never was learned and never remembered
Like the dawning of this world today
A world that will never see another day
Like this blazing taste of freedom in
The glistening rainwater halo on these twining twigs.

From rain to rain,
From rain to light.

Of what use is our warmth
If not to pass on as love to others?
To fear the world’s end
Is to imagine obligating immortality.
Absorb the dawning light
Exhale the breath of night
There is no loss no mystery
Only blissful sleep bathed in light.
Will my bones parch in desert sun?
My legacy a dusty swirl that fades from eyeless sight?
Our lost world ever sinking stern first
Into the cold icy ocean of indifference
While I, a misanthrope write poems of love
To a world made miserable with visions from above
The mindless matter of matterless minds
The perennial pinings of humankind.

19 December 2019 — 19 September 2021

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Here the ways of men divide.
If you wish to strive for peace of soul and happiness, then believe;
if you wish to be a disciple of truth, then search.

— Friedrich Nietzsche

There have been a few times in my life when I could see the total reality of our human world, and where it was going, with complete clarity. 2011 was such a time. This is not to say that I am some kind of genius or seer, but simply that by 2011 I had lived long enough, had learned enough and experienced enough to have my sense of awareness fully opened and finely sharpened to understand the full spectacle on display. It was a fortuitous combination of the flow of life and the pure luck of being. But it was nevertheless true: I saw, I knew, and I wrote some of it all down.

But what I also knew by then was that such moments of insight come with the realization that one is existentially alone: nobody else, however conventionally close and loved, can truly know your experience or feel your truths. And this is always true though one is usually oblivious to it because one is bedazzled by the moment-to-moment immediacy of their enthrallment with their desires and fears and emotions in the ever-changing ever-flowing kaleidoscope of personally experienced life.

So to be fully aware is to realize that one is a perpetual outsider, like Meursault in Albert Camus’s brilliant novel L’étranger. It’s not that I wish to be apart from people I conventionally love — children, spouse, family, even friends — or from the clubs I wish to be a part of, like that of the political Ezekiels ardent to bring about the socialist utopia of brotherhood and sisterhood they can so easily imagine and which few if any are prepared to actually bring about; no, it is simply that the conscious experience of being alive — and knowing — is completely unitary even as we are myriadly interconnected as social beings, as a species, and as organic forms of life.

So my instances of being prescient can only illuminate reality for me, they can never affect the perceptions of others, nor alter the course of human events. In that sense I am Sisyphus, and Meursault, alone in a world of implacable absurdity despite its many miraculous beauties flung across space and time like a spiderweb bejeweled with droplets from the first rainfall of the year now glinting and sparkling in the sun of a fresh new dawn.

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CALLING 7-15-4-15-20

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CALLING 7-15-4-15-20

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Seventeen Beatitudes Heard By Sister Kathryn On The Pilgrimage

Seventeen Beatitudes Heard By Sister Kathryn On The Pilgrimage

Blesséd are the dispirited poor,
for theirs is the greatest claim for succor by society.

Blesséd are those who grieve,
for theirs is the greatest claim for empathy from all.

Blesséd are the meek,
for theirs is the calmness that assuages our struggles.

Blesséd are the merciful,
for they dispel the terrors of abandonment.

Blesséd are those who hunger for social justice,
for they make the progress of social enlightenment.

Blesséd are those who advance cooperation,
for they displace enmity and conflict with peace.

Blesséd are those who defend the weak,
for they impart strength and raise gratitude.

Blesséd are the resistors of oppressors and persecution,
for they inspire courage in rebellion against defeat.

Blesséd are the good-hearted,
for they infuse society with unifying confidence.

Blesséd are those who laugh and play,
for they add sparkles of mirth to our lives.

Blesséd are those who study without arrogance,
for they educate and liberate us from prejudice.

Blesséd are the selflessly creative,
for they spark the same artfulness in others.

Blesséd are those who love without grasping,
for they nurture character growth in our children.

Blesséd are those who nurture the Earth,
for they feed us all down the generations.

Blesséd are those who see divinity in all living things,
for they unite the consciousness of All-Life.

Blesséd are those who keep company with the lonely,
for they bring reassurance that allows for departure.

Blesséd are those who inspire you to do as these,
for they keep the torch of the human spirit lit.

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When Ozymandias Is Forgotten

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When Ozymandias Is Forgotten

Zionism is racism, which is why so many Americans support it. American political consciousness has as its consensus a rainbow coalition of varieties of racism; and racism is a religious faith whose sacrament is money, whose mythology is real estate, and whose original sin is genocide.

Global warming climate change is the coming Great Flood for which we will ever be absent a Noah, because there is no True God to inspire a True Noah. God is dead because we are our own gods, who are dying in the rising tide of entropy seeping out as the lifeblood from the body of the True God we have murdered.

So many of those whose lives will be cut short, and whose dreams will be cut off, are innocent of the crime; but it is ever the privilege of wealth in its pyramid death cult to sacrifice abundances of young life on the altars of its mausoleums: glorious memories imagined that will only blow in the wind as dust in the not so distant unknown.

For some: ideas liberate the mind, and time offers promise.
For others: ideology cages mind, and time is a sentence.
Gratitude is the experience of Everlasting Life, and
No soul immersed in gratitude is ever alone.

The warmth of sunlight on skin, the brush of cool breeze against the cheek, the ringing of birdsong through the trees, the blushing of day into night before the eyes, the slow cascade of wispy cloud down the mountain, the sparkle of moonlight in the brook, the density of quiet in the dark, are all the eternal caress and lullaby by the Mother, always sustaining a refuge of love, always welcoming home her lost children.

I stretched my legs and curled them under the blankets while the cat pressed his weight down into them, walking and coiling above. I ringed them into a bowl, a plush crater, and he settled his body pressing against them. And thus we slept through the late night dark into the bright of morning: connected in the eternal.

The struggle for life is real, but we misuse it.
Wisdom is life lived in the calm of grateful awareness.

If I am moderate in my speech, it is ignored in favor of existing biases. If I am immoderate in my speech, it sparks thought which is met with denial and a hostile defense of ignorance, which is always threatened by any truth however moderated its appearance. So to be truthful to myself I must offend the delicate sensibilities of your falsity.

Socrates was insufferable, and was insufferably responded to. Plato was elegantly snobbish in playing Socrates without hazard. Shelley was Dionysian, but with his lordly airs could never be Euripidean; his Ionian reflection was Keats, that flowering of the sublime into the radiance above Wordsworthian mulch. Bukowski, that guttural Boudu, played at Diogenes without his wit or insight. Ginsberg, as frenzied Whitman, played Kerouac in the feminine; Kerouac played Ryokan as cool jazz Nietzsche; Ryokan was pure moonlight on the river; and Camus was the river of conscience into Melville’s sea of morality. Our taste in poets, for those that are true poets, reflects on our flaws not theirs. True poets are diamonds of imperfection forged out of the coal of humanity.

When Ozymandias is forgotten we will have let go and been enfolded.

5 June 2021

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For Palestine, in May 2021

“Indeed, I tremble for my country
when I reflect that God is just:
that his justice cannot sleep forever.”

— Thomas Jefferson,
unrepentant slaveowner, in 1781,
80 years later came the Civil War.

May 2021:
In Sheikh Jarrah, East Jerusalem,
Israeli mobs shielded by Israeli soldiers
expropriate Palestinian homes:
more living room for Greater Israel.

Israeli airplanes, unopposed,
bomb Gaza
84 years after Guernica,
retaliating for Palestine’s right to exist:
infants, children, women, men die,
civilians all:
blown up,
buried in the rubble of their homes,
bleeding away in hospitals
denied pandemic vaccines:
all eyed hungrily by bulldozer blades
eager to raze
more living room for Greater Israel.

Triumphally
does America’s largess to Zionism
clear out another Western Expansion
to echoes of Crazy Horse:
“My lands are where my people lie buried”;
raining hellfire on infidels to White Supremacy.
USS Liberty continues to sink:
the Associated Press Building is bombed;
Americans, too, like Abraham of yore,
must be willing to offer blood sacrifices
on the altar of Biblical Glory:
more living room for Greater Israel.

The Conquest continues
because empty souls with blank hearts
cling to tribal hate with loaded guns.

When will “God’s justice” rain down on us
in retribution for our lush sponsorship
of Zionist war crimes?

We have forgotten Nuremberg,
and “never again,”
only 76 years ago:
so I tremble for my country.

May 2021:
These are our crimes: tremble.

15 May 2021

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First of May in World’s Autumn

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First of May in World’s Autumn

Bright sunlight falls through clear air with fresh coolness in the shadows touching skin with warmth as imperceptible eddies sway green leaves gently beneath a blue sky under which an unmeshing fragmenting spray of white wispiness skims over the hillcrests framing my canyon ringing with the songs of thrushes, the darting sparkling forays of twizzling hummingbirds, and the chirping calls of White-Throated swifts swooping all about to and fro from their attic-hidden nests through corridors of tree fronds with scattered emerging hints of drought yellowing, while Brown Creepers flutter by in their nervously butterfly-like dropping flight hops; and all is under the confident and commanding eyes of Red-Tailed Hawks, a pair, wheeling majestically so close overhead, their shadows whisking across the panorama arrayed to view, their tails glowing gold with translucent sun, their arcing wingtip feathers scribing crisp the moment flashed to eye onto the crystal of memory.

O Nietzsche! Reading your words is like gargling with gravel to sift out gold! I am sinking in my deepening dotage awash in memories of youthful debaucheries! Is this deserved punishment for my unintended cruelties and ignorant harshness, or rewarded grace for my clumsy kindnesses and stumbling harmlessness?

I marinate in memories of your presence, my fulsome love, flesh-instilled beyond the force of thought, punished by the absence of presence irredeemable by time, rewarded by the presence of absence of fading spirit, the scent and hunger and skin-feel of that lost eternity of your warm smiling gaze enfolding all. My candle flames melting the cold hardened wax of the past lofting its vaporous luminosity into the pitch blackness of all futures’s oblivion, a flare along the passage from the unknown to the forgotten. Stars are the luminous hot bubbles of light in the roiling cold boil of existence into nonexistence, time into timelessness, space into self-absorption, substance into void.

Smoke from extinct rainbows burnt in offerings by dead souls to imaginary gods lifts memories of lost oceans into night’s blackness to fall slowly rolling down from canyon rim hillcrests the cool mist diffusing space disappearing before penetrating earth’s thirsting embrace, submerging this island of forest in an ocean of quiet whose silence can be heard far past distant unseen horizons beyond which the sun is being reborn in the womb of eternity, as hummingbirds sit hunched on their perches snoring. The singing light of day again will wake me soon, for all I know.

1 May 2021

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Burnt Cold Distance

Burnt Cold Distance

Smelling burnt haze
Morning sunlight
Warming back
Hot coffee aroma
Steaming face
Jays squawk
Chickadees cheep
Hummingbirds twizzle
Pale light caresses
Smooth barkskin, leaves
Green fading to dull rusts
Silence, mostly
Police siren far far away
Downwind stillness
After deep night cold fog
All our sins infected air
Drying, burning, flooded away
Nature claws back
At our flawed caresses
Sleepwalkers everyone
Sad unseeing
Paradise shrivel
Staccato minds
Illusions coiled
Atomize
As we all sink
Beneath fantasy clouds
Fragments floating on the sea
Of a void, avoid
What could be
Voices calling out deafly
Ears awash in echoes
Falsely, drones
Of inner emptiness
Engulfed by ignorance
Despite the richness
Embracing us
Cocooned in shells
Of helpless absorption.
The world collapses
from our loss of soul.

The Coldness of Distant Burning

The morning’s hazy sunlight smells of burning
From far off distance past last night’s cold deep fog

Coffee aroma steams waking in my face
The spreading sunlight soaks warmth into my back

Jays squawk, Chickadees cheep, Hummingbirds twizzle
Pale light caresses smooth eucalyptus bark
And drying leaves that fade dull from greens to rusts

The silent air hints of sirens far away
This downwind stillness infected by our sins

Of dying life, burning lands, flooding away
As Nature claws repelling our failed caress

Sleepwalkers everyone sadly unseeing
Paradise shrivel with their staccato minds

Illusions coiled so tightly we atomize
To sink like stones under fantasy’s clouds

Our shattered world floats as fragements on the sea
The once so certain is now a void of dreams

Unrealized castaways are droning still
Engulfed by echoes from shallowness within

Despite nature’s richness embracing us all
Cocooned in our shells of helpless absorption

So the world collapses from our loss of soul

1 September 2020

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Sunshine Girl, and Good People

Nit’s Cafe is a small, wonderful Thai-themed restaurant in Fort Bragg.

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Sunshine Girl

I saw the granddaughter of Jim Morrison and Janis Joplin today —
Beautiful girl —
Lives in Berkeley sometimes
Sometimes in Fort Bragg or Albion
Not sure what she does for a living
Maybe work part-time in Nit’s Cafe
But she’s a good singer
Makes up her own lyrics
Loves animals —
Feeds the hummingbirds
Has a pet skunk —
Not bad at gardening —
Trades with her tomatoes at the Farmers’ Market —
Even knows Spanish!
Said Zapata was an ancestor, it’s likely true
Said Santa Monica is like golf:
A Republican pig playpen
Lights incense to read
Rings a Tibetan bowl-bell when the Moon is full
Does her own math even, I’m impressed
Keeps bees I heard, earns her honey
Hikes the hills to see the hawks
Watches waves from the cliff
A tough cookie with a sweet disposition
Free spirit
Always fun when she’s around
Glad I lived long enough to know her

4 June 2020

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Good People

I do not think it is fair to ridicule people of modest education and sophistication, who are otherwise good-hearted, right-thinking and right-acting. Wisdom is not the same as intelligence, which is not the same as education. Education is the product of opportunity, and thus usually an accident of birth; intelligence is a product of genetics, and thus a blameless accidental attainment; and wisdom is a product of rationality coupled with good character. It is rationality and good character that are essential to the making of a complete person, and to the making of a good society.

4 June 2020

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Job Application

Job Application

I would be good
at watching the quality of morning sun in fall
shift from crystalline horizontal incisiveness
to a near invisibility of diffused blue,
the texture of reality softening
from a pointillist granularity of color and shadow –
razor sharp in its purity –
to a shaded weave of fluid color, lit from within,
alive with the fullness of the universe,
autumn leaves tumbling like petals of amber
dancing across the luminescent blue,
carried by the eddying sighs of a living earth.

I would be good
at watching wispy white feathers of icy cloud
curl in slow vortical whorls,
sailing with majestic grace across the cupola of atmosphere;
and I would be good at telling you
how the rays of evening sun
glance off the salty foam of wavecrests in the Pacific
to warm the pink bellies of creamy pendulous clouds,
an amorous sky rolling its effulgent Rubenesque abundance
over the sprawling darkening body of the earth.

I would be good
at telling you how the droplets of mist
hang in the air between pine boughs and leaves of eucalyptus
in the quiet of the morning
before the rising sun crests the canyon rim
flooding the humid silence with light,
and how the silent swoop of a hawk low in the forest canopy
cores vortices of clarity as its wake,
a clarity that diffuses into misty white opaqueness,
an opacity that evaporates in the light;
and I could tell you about evening’s blanketing fog
pulled westward over the rim of the canyon
dissolving the panorama of clarity
into a hushed proximate blankness of unlit white
punctuated by the resonant whoo-whoo of a pair of owls
flapping noiseless wings to reach invisible perches
in the heavy coolness of descending night.

I would be good
at telling you how the hummingbirds pair,
drilling the noonday light
with a swirling darting weave of whistling clicks,
sprinkling glints of blazing color
as if sparking the very air with a furious friction;
and I could tell you of opalescent clouds,
rim-lit on passing across the sun,
trailing sweeping purple arcs of evaporating rain
that disappear into the clear blue,
only a shadow reaching the ground.

I would be good at all that.
Surely, many would want to hear
how the day’s light progressed,
being shut away in their self-contained preoccupations –
unconnected.
I could remind them,
my words would reach out
like a mother’s arms to a frightened baby,
encompassing it in warming comfort –
connection to the mother.
Surely, in today’s world
there must be a job like this,
the need is so great.
Think of me as the weatherman of the soul.

16 November 2001