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every morning i wake, i wake
surprised. that life appears
again with each
opening of these eyes.
that eyes arise
with opening of each day.
that when both close, all i’s
fall away.

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Rapture

walking-in-rain-gray
I have had a new poem, Rapture, published in Deep Water Literary Journal.

This fabulous new journal seeks to "become a haven for those who write about 
and produce artworks interpreting Darkness, whatever that may mean to the 
creator of the work". 

Their first issue for the year is themed 'Loss' - it contains some 
fantastic artwork, fiction, and poems. You can read mine below, or at 
Deep Water here.

Rapture

Looking through clear eyes
of imminent death, time
is a ponderous fruit,
hanging heavy and swollen
with possibility
in her pendulous swinging basket.

Globular and over-ripe
she blooms with all the days
you will not see,
a still life of
fecundity squandered,
without witness, unconsumed.

God, to take just one more
bite, and this time really savour
the sweet juices running
down the face
and the fingers sticky
and tingling with
the messiness of it all –

would be a rapture.
But, no matter:
we must carry on without her,

disentwining from this world
despite the drive to cling and cling and
aching from the amputated
limb of our projections, we are roused
by wise compulsion to accept
life has been spent,
and we must move on, relentlessly

on, without choice leaving
all those little things unsaid,
and undone,
without choice shedding
the slithery skin that houses us,
but locks us in, and further
our very sense of selves
must fall in cascades of disguise,
unravelling us for – the chill surprise!
of running naked, out into the rain.

Was T. S. Eliot a Buddhist? by Michele Seminara

My essay, ‘Was T. S. Eliot a Buddhist?’ has been re-published in the wonderful Blue Hour Magazine. Please take a look, and while you’re there consider submitting something yourself – the editors, Susie and Moriah, are the loveliest around.

The Blue Hour

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time.

T. S. Eliot – Four Quartets

Several years ago I taught a Buddhist class on the profound subject of emptiness, and I used this quote to illustrate what I felt was our true goal in life  – to consciously return home.

Not home in the sense of an external place, but as an internal place of perfect inner peace and connectedness – a state which Buddhists enticingly call the union of bliss and emptiness.

Bliss refers to our most subtle and clear-seeing level of mind, an intoxicating place existing deep down beneath the turbulence of our conceptions.

Emptiness is a little trickier. Essentially it is the theory of how things don’t exist – that is, they are empty of existing independently, either from all other phenomena, or from the minds that…

View original post 571 more words

Abandon

broken mirror reflection  

Strange
what happens
when you hear the news

and find yourself gazing
in underwater slow motion
at all that up to this point
was your life.

The verandah you spent the day
inexplicably painting green,
the doll's house
carefully constructed
in the childhood room,
the vase placed
just so
to welcome him home,
the treacherous photographs
lining the fairytale hall

all
roll gently
in waves
and send ripples out into the future
so that it instantly -
rearranges itself,
and what was to be
is now not.

Still. So still. Clear. Cruel. Dazzling.

All pierced by a
screaming voice (mine I think)
a crying child (ours).
She's tugging my leg trying
desperately to pull me
back
through the doorway
of her already fractured
childhood before it 
snaps shut.

(Oh sweetheart, I wish
if only for you,
that I could rewind
and keep playing my part,
but it's gone, you see,
there's nothing left to return to
because it was never there,
it was a lie.)

Then in the background I hear
a whimper (that's you)
the sound funneling me back into
the - now of your face -
pale and quivering,
like a mollusc without its shell.

Naked
you stand,
your truth pried open before me,
waiting for the knife of my rage to cut -
and in a moment of horrifying clarity
I realize that you have been shucked!

Your exposure is indecent
(and somehow brave)
you burn in the light of my gaze
and are finally free.
(It is only much later
I dare to consider
that perhaps,
so are we.)

Now,
carefully,
so as not to perpetuate harm,
I take her small hand
and we tip-toe away,
abandoning the spent husks
of past selves behind us,
trailing all our dark painful
roots along with us
like bloody testaments
to these stillborn lives
as we pull further,
further, further,
still pulling
today.

As if


John Everett Millais - The Artist Attending the Mourning of a Young Girl ...
We live as if we never die
as if this dream's not real;
small partings now may make us cry -
but the end's invisible!

We're thrust into this striving world
and before we've wrestled breath,
the race begins to see who can 
live least before their death.