On the one year anniversary of Grandma’s passing:
October 16: 4:42 AM
This year, just like the last
But this time is unlike the last
I knew then that she was gone
So was her pain
That, the consoling Son
Upon the bud of grief
It is a slow bloom
Oft gone unnoticed
Its dew, an unbidden tear
And the sweet pang of loss
Sweet, because grief
Is but the memory
Of having loved, having been known
Our shared memory
Our shared grief
Is the rich earth
Of Joy’s garden
Where her roses still grow
Working on a written / photo-essay project about a recent 6 day fish-counting trip in the Golden Trout Wilderness with the California Dept. of Fish & Wildlife. Hope to have it written, edited and sequenced in the next few weeks. In the meantime here’s an initial favorite.
Soda Springs Creek Trailhead
Golden Trout Wilderness, California
Me too, brother :)
This was some place before
With a memory, and a name
Which make me poor
The longer I remain unknowing
The self’s received outpouring
Made wholly, make Holy
Timber, mortar, wire, and stone
Teach me a memory
So I may remember
Which lines were forged
By joy, and which by sorrow
Makes one pause when the truth is all strung together like that.
The United States of America is not for black people. We know this, and then we put it out of our minds, and then something happens to remind us. Saturday, in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Mo., something like that happened: An unarmed 18-year-old black man was executed by police in broad daylight [………] To ascribe this entirely to contempt for black men is to miss an essential variable, though—a very real, American fear of them. They—we—are inexplicably seen as a millions-strong army of potential killers, capable and cold enough that any single one could be a threat to a trained police officer in a bulletproof vest. There are reasons why white gun’s rights activists can walk into a Chipotle restaurant with assault rifles and be seen as gauche nuisances while unarmed black men are killed for reaching for their wallets or cell phones, or carrying children’s toys. Guns aren’t for black people, either.
That point about the Chipotle restaurant diner with an assault rifle: stfu everyone who ever says white privilege doesn’t exist. This is not an equal society.
I second what you said about the Chipotle point Ashley.
Love is a deepening, not a new beginning. Discovering love with another does not reset who you have been. Life does not restart once love finds you, it simply recasts that which came before, both the beauty and the pain. Life before love is not desperate though it may be flush with unquenched longing. Romantic love is but a more brilliant side of the many faceted diamond that is available to us each and every day in the meals and laughter shared with those who are not frightened by our unvarnished nearness. Life is ripe with unacknowledged loves, love is awaiting discovery in those shaded places.
Meditation at Lagunitas
All the new thinking is about loss.
In this it resembles all the old thinking.
The idea, for example, that each particular erases
the luminous clarity of a general idea. That the clown-
faced woodpecker probing the dead sculpted trunk
of that black birch is, by his presence,
some tragic falling off from a first world
of undivided light. Or the other notion that,
because there is in this world no one thing
to which the bramble of blackberry corresponds,
a word is elegy to what it signifies.
We talked about it late last night and in the voice
of my friend, there was a thin wire of grief, a tone
almost querulous. After a while I understood that,
talking this way, everything dissolves: justice,
pine, hair, woman, you and I. There was a woman
I made love to and I remembered how, holding
her small shoulders in my hands sometimes,
I felt a violent wonder at her presence
like a thirst for salt, for my childhood river
with its island willows, silly music from the pleasure boat,
muddy places where we caught the little orange-silver fish
called pumpkinseed. It hardly had to do with her.
Longing, we say, because desire is full
of endless distances. I must have been the same to her.
But I remember so much, the way her hands dismantled bread,
the thing her father said that hurt her, what
she dreamed. There are moments when the body is as numinous
as words, days that are the good flesh continuing.
Such tenderness, those afternoons and evenings,
saying blackberry, blackberry, blackberry.
Letters to Lost Loves is a full length album and a collection of short stories.
Sorry, it’s not my fault that the two friends I’ve wanted to release full length records launched their kickstarters within a week of each other. But take a second to watch Tyson’s video.
A good friend of mine, an amazing musician and carpenter, has finally recorded a full-length record. Watch him make a checkerboard by hand here, and then give him some money to help him get the music out.