When did you

stop believing

you were someone

who had things to say

worth stopping awhile

to listen to?

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November 10, 2018

From the kitchen wall
the clock carves the silence

atop the kitchen table
stained, wooden, scratched

apples in a basket
quietly ripen and rot

beside them a young man
looks out the window:

on the end of a branch
of a huge garry oak

a twig dangles
by a few fibres

three rusty leaves
still holding on

Other trees
still green

shiver with
autumn wind

late morning sun
breathing silver

through grey clouds
across the kitchen table

His mind
turns away now

to the futures warring
inside his gut:

a voyage across oceans
of exile, adventure

of great fortune,
or disaster

(either one
will do)

of finally having
a story to tell;

Or vows,

a shaven head
the flutter of robes

the thwack of sticks
the ring of a bell

the steady thrum
of incantation

a mind
like a mirror

a heart,
like a window

within silence

silence poised
for God’s mischief

a silence
unlike this one

that holds
a clenched heart

like a cat
with a sparrow

still alive
in its mouth–

A different cat now
leaps up

tiptoes across
the wooden table

toward the window
delighted by sun’s warmth

tail swishing
against the potted plant

at rest now
on the windowsill

And the twig
that hangs

from the branch
of the oak tree

almost naked
but for three leaves

it’s withstood
the autumn storms

if only now
it could snap off

And fall down
and rest!

November 10, 2018

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People talk

far too much

I have trouble

hearing them

when they do that

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On the Ferry Ride to Tsawwassen

What a species we are
Chewing our food
Laughing, drinking
Wiping burger grease
From our fingers
Gazing out at the clouds, water
Some of us even
Spying on the rest of us

See how we walk on two legs
Who told us to do that?
What a bunch of morons
Walking that way
And then see how we go
And have families
Or stay alone:
Equally ridiculous!
We wear glasses
Like nincompoops
Have sex
Like goofballs
While on occasion some of us
get to be Beethoven
or Rabbi Hillel
or even Barbra Streisand for that matter
Love, sit, stand, love, sneeze,
Sleep, shit, eat, love, die
How peculiar
Why do any of it?
(Why bother asking?)

Having skin and shoes
And minds and governments
Preferences, alphabets,
proxy wars, clocks, orgasms,
sushi, birthday parties–
How absurd, all of it!
How stupid!
How lovely!

October 30, 2018

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Me and Du Fu

I sit in the living room
A lump on the couch

Reading Du Fu
Aping the verse

Calming frayed nerves
Before the voyage

Just me and a Tang poet
The electric fan blowing

A house cat passing by
with my twisted karma

The sunlight seeping
through gauzy windows

Oct. 13, 2018

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Day 8: Mad Dog Café, Wednesday Morning

Here’s another line drawing from when I was at Mad Dog Café on Wednesday.

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Day 7: Tabasco and Dried Herbs

Here’s a line drawing based on a photo I took of the window just above the sink at the hostel I stayed at in Kyoto, just over a year ago.


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