Slipping By

Julia Revitt

Julia Revitt - Unsplash

© Copyright 2008 A. S. Kline All Rights Reserved

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Contents


Quietly

Talk quietly,

talk casually,

spirit is depth,

the body profound.

Five years love

to four days being,

all things charged,

the earth electric.

This species has

no destiny, accept it.

It’s vanishing is

of no account,

but in ourselves

we surround

the whole universe

of stars and silence.

Talk softly,

talk sweetly.

Love is depth,

empathy profound.


Respect the Creatures

Long slopes of burned-out trees,

clinging mist in the grass,

somewhere there I saw a creature passing.

Flicker of brown or grey, a life,

a meaning, deep as ours, deep,

valid as our seeming.

Respect the creatures,

they too feel, always their depth

is our depth, their past is ours.

And learn a little about consciousness,

what feels is aware,

mind is projection,

of self onto all things.


In the Fire

Waking at night on the empty beach, watching

the edge of Scorpio rise, one jewelled claw,

the head a ruby, dark clouds on a dark horizon,

slow breeze from the bay, wild memories,

the heart’s shamed bitterness, stones and sand.

Memory not of night, nor summer, nor the sea.

Your face pale in silence, prelude to forgetting,

mask of the fine unreason that lies in relationship.

Love’s not desire, desire’s not love, and the blessed

co-existence of the two a gift, of light, of mind.

Waking at night to the slow milk of the waves,

the radiance of shells, the dark of driftwood,

hearts gripped by tense fingers, ice-cold, burning.

Say it, say what we were, an immense fire,

that exhausts this life, this world, this being.

We have to speak more quietly, we need,

this species, to say less, to talk more gently,

to learn the universe, you and I, far beyond

the commerce and the wars, blent, curled alight,

like these bright twigs now, curling in the fire.


How Far

The stars from such a distance,

all those fossils buried deeper

in space-time, hard to focus,

on our littleness, on theirs.

Your eyes far-off, buried gleaming

under closed lids, shine of all the eyes

of all the centuries, in another time

the other space, that of mind.

How far back under the galaxies

we go, feet mark time in the sand,

the footprints here, like gull trails,

through ash and lava, no people.

In some poems the reality hardens,

language sets down a spine of stone

in ridge of rock under miles of ocean,

to be raised one day, angled to the eye.

How small, like leaves pressed together.

Your warmth is the fire from all those lives,

heat against the dark, against the cold, what

un-mans, our transience, our amazing beauty.


Mind’s Gift

Don’t be trapped in all that vacancy,

that absence of the spirit, mute mind,

bricking its own walls in, this is not

this is not what we are, this ‘civilisation’.

You know it. Under every face,

in every eye, the burning, the spirit.

Don’t be fooled by all that reason,

whereby we tell ourselves the mad is sane,

the crazed is sensible, that dark is light.

You are not you, but always something other,

history’s a flame, no more than that,

a shower of incandescent sparks across the night.

Don’t be less than you can imagine,

or believe in more than mind’s transience,

spirit is not owned by religion, nor does

the universe arise from what we think.

We have not even begun to understand,

inventing gods and demons, not ourselves.

Free yourself with the creatures, the sacred,

the pain we cause defines what we are,

and what we create, our aspiration,

made of the dust of every star, we form

the temple, life is meaning, beauty, truth

and love, are the mind’s gift to the dark.


Feel the Black Soil Sing

Hands in the earth,

so read, write,

what eases spirit,

and not what

disturbs –

the heart disturbs,

be quiet,

put your hands

in the earth.

Feel the soil cling,

remember what we are,

the darkest creatures,

among the claws, scales,

feathers of the light,

remember who was first

who will be last,

feel the black soil

sing.


Not Simpler

It gets barer, more naked, not simpler, deeper,

like the oak-tree’s coils of steel in moonlight,

the mass of plants, leaves dark on the field,

and dark-light crying of the water-birds,

across the lake’s metallic, rippled, silence.

Things learned, the things now forgotten,

things gone, things found, things known,

the savage endless mysteries of the spirit

what can be felt, what never can be told,

the universe beyond, and a stiller music.

In evening depth, here, all along the wood,

there’s one clear break of sky, no sign of rain,

owl and fox calls, light down through branches,

pale stains of curious silver, patches, iced

no fine detail, and each shadow a surprise.

And Mars, down-wind between rags of cloud,

bright, russet, ochre, fixed and flowing fragment,

over intricate earth, pure complex piece there

of all the net, organic glittering, the mass,

all the order, all the chaos, this life, this being.


Out of the Other Language

Slowly summoning the Masters,

walking with shadows, beating bounds,

placing one word on another, until

the opaque mind grows luminous.

Dipping the dark heart in the pool,

and writing in fire on the wall,

tracing it in gold on the screen,

where the silent figures run and bow,

Conjuring, spirit like a wand to draw

meaning, always, from the fading edge,

out of the other, sweeter language,

forging the lovely bitterness of this.


Loosing Go

Blue cloud and white

grass.

On an edge of rock

fluttering with the birds.

This pine is red, this

is black,

the breeze sings

in a jar of glass.

You think you know

who you are,

the beauty of mind,

can’t be sure,

When the earth shakes,

this valley shakes,

these cliffs, the body,

all our law.

Black winds and hills,

can’t see the stars,

all the heart though

is light,

burns like a furnace,

no more ties,

no more nets,

the brilliant eye.


Han Shan’s Mountain

Han Shan’s mountain in the mind.

Cross the light-years, find it there.

On the solid circuit of new planets

Behold, an age-old recognition.

Beauty of light in its given form,

not what we could make, as boughs’

complexity, the small twigs interlaced,

the bright, the overlapping levels,

or a galaxy, for some human ship

sliding sail-less through the silence.

Cross the light-years and find it there,

Han Shan’s mountain in the mind.


Plum Buds

Plum buds, cherry buds,

that tiny bird a wren,

the hedge sparrows dark

new moon, white sickle

cuts down the grass

with silver cry.

Plum buds, apple buds,

no mind, stop the

thinking,

a process, not a process,

no matter, for a moment

(eternal light) be free.

Plum bark, cherry bark, apple,

pigeon on roof, tree, sky,

long glide down through

evening blue,

all the forms burning

in your eye.


Diving

Seawater, dark, the interior greenness,

salt in the eyes, and ice on the skin.

We can dive down through this planet,

come out transparent on the other side.

Pools, caves, cliffs, sand, the mica glints

seal rocks, stone, a hand-turned shell,

turns to bone and light, This blue planet

in us orbits chaos, twines through black.

What’s solid isn’t solid, flickers though,

oh, something there, can’t show you what.

Is knowing what it does good enough,

which is the gist of all we see and do?

Oceans under everything, bonfires too

of an electric gleaming, long ridges

of unseen higher mountains, in the night,

sometimes words glow, hosts of meaning.

The waves are good, the shore is sweet,

the sand-wet thighs.


Seeing World

Fill the mind,

then empty the mind,

then fill it with emptiness,

seeing world.

The shining Now,

the roar of trees,

so much emptiness,

so much beauty.

So much detail,

and no meaning.

Earth, your starlight,

free of purpose.

All is energy,

energy’s tranquil,

energy’s emptiness

silent seeing.

Fill the mind,

empty the mind,

then fill it with emptiness,

seeing world.


This Place

This place, no nations

rock, stream, tree,

the fire of dawn sun.

On foot, dark rock,

silence is the crystal.

Moving forever on hills

and mountains,

hearing the pine-trees sing

the worlds shiver

stars in a hermit’s eye.

Matter is the place,

no names, no forms,

one continuous being.

Sit, watch boundaries dissolve.

Hear the white roar of energy.


Immortal, Ephemeral

World immortal, ever-changing,

endless being, with no purpose,

meditate, awake, and laugh.

Swift, responsive, beyond truth,

mindless being, without ceasing,

through the void hands must pass.

Earth ephemeral, Earth the flower,

mind ethereal, late this hour,

white the dawn-wind lights the grass.


Going Past

Going past religions,

climb the mountain.

Spruce, larch, fir,

dark seas of pine,

that sigh, that roaring,

all the night-winds crying.

Going past history, past nations,

walking on the free trail,

black creek, white stone,

fall of icy water,

to the slopes of grass

and all seeds sighing.

Going past all our

assumptions,

recognise our freedom,

clear the mind.

Reject all this

denial of the spirit.

Past history, past nations,

past religion.


One Universe, Shining Empty Meaning

Dream, dreamer, dream the transient world,

Nature does not serve human oppression,

All great gifts are born from empathy,

Love, compassion, beauty, emptiness.

Dream, dreamer, dream the transient world.

No one said we have to live like this.

Forget history, learn the new freedom,

truth, joy, kindness, emptiness.


Moon-Slope

Stop thinking here,

this moon-slope,

shining silence,

the field of grass.

Stone, stream, tree,

the far star, bold

blue, vibrant,

the mind singing

through the air.

Let the Universe burn,

the great Wheel turn,

intention-less through

meaningless time.

Here earth-second

is eternity,

here infinity goes by,

stop thinking, watch

the dancers of the world.


Cool Breast

In the moonlit waste darkness

I heard the stars sighing, I heard

the silence roaring, lion’s call of being,

Shining Now, all energy, all energy

is calm, that empty flow,

all tranquil Earth, ephemeral flower.

I felt far-off your moonlit blood moving,

so deep you became our greater self,

the mirror still, the star the source.

Oh, loose responsive empty night,

Oh, love’s cool breast.


If Not

This planet, free of nations, sidestep poisons,

watch the leaf tick, see its random movement,

and all we are could vanish if not for love.

Nature, non-human, but we were here before,

our species made this trail, watch the leaf tick,

small creek, shallow water, all gone but for love.

Children are forced to live in adult worlds,

but beyond the words, with charity, watch

the universe, its random movements, and we

all emptiness if not for love.


Spirit Road

Whole minds trembling,

no direction,

but in the end

to run for the stars,

the space-time road.

Civilisation shuddering,

and no meaning,

but in the end

to go past wars and nations,

the sweet-love road.

East and West dying,

and imprisoned,

but in the end,

to see beauty flowering

the free-spirit road.


Night-Bird

So quiet we can’t hear the fire,

so still we can’t see the burning,

your heart burning in my heart,

your mind, my mind, on fire.

Delicate this intensity,

great power of systems wheeling.

This nest of time, below the stars,

this wild wilderness of being.

So gentle we can’t hear the flames,

so calm we can’t feel the whirling,

just a flash, a glint of wings,

night-bird floating in the air.


The Free Trail

Lovely here on the free trail.

Where is the unseen,

untouched, unknown?

A flicker of meaning

in the heart.

We can’t go back,

who’ve been here before.

Not in the wild or civilised,

primitive or sophisticated,

human beings always so,

but a freedom

in the spirit.

We missed the way all along,

eyes on the dirt or in the sky.

In the silence, past the systems,

beyond the history, religions,

kindness, freedom, that’s the way,

lovely here on the free trail.


Make the Soul

Way out, the glittering depths,

cold blue silver, high systems,

the vast wheel trembles,

for us the only

mountain quivers,

black against the stars

Inside, the glittering depths,

swimming down through us,

all perception of this Earth,

all our intense projections.

Sirius rising, half a moon,

Mars a glow of heart’s burning.

To tell truth, the entire

truth, that is hard,

but let the fields grow,

the minds flower,

without cant and ritual,

free and peaceful,

make the soul.


Silk Screen

A Chinese brightness, silk, spontaneous life,

tiny figures climb by rivers and hills.

Going with the shift of centuries, tick

of all the elements, this space-time fabric.

Benevolent, Confucius said, sincere, meaning

kind, courteous, reticent in relationship,

the generous heart, jen, the thing we give

the universe, our lone creation, this thing, love.

Moon on the hills, breeze flows like water,

twice as cool on lips and eyes, grass,

being at one with the world, which exists,

though all transient, un-meaning emptiness.


Age of the Child

What is there,

on the horizon,

is the age

of reticent meaning,

the age of the simplest

gesture,

discretion,

outer silence.

What is there,

in the darkness,

the past being

all one moment,

possessing the one depth,

is likewise

the single future,

simplicity of being.

What is there,

in the mind’s eye,

is an age

of joy and beauty

reachable if we will it,

beyond selfish power and gain,

an age of the child

beyond us.


Crystal-Crazed

What makes the poem strange thread of life caught there

the trickle of some mind-beat heart-beat image of person

pure gazing regard of the careless eye some pain some

tremor of delight breath of night air some up-turned face,

but a part of the flow connecting the child to now on that

same strange thread of tenuous transient existence an angle

on being some flashing crystal-crazed refraction of a life.


Night-Ride

Night-road, night-ride, night-hours,

youth’s spent thoughts, silent towns,

one empty universe,

one pain of non-meaning.

Nights of power, of gain, of force,

of lies, barren aims, the world

of ignorance, religion, of the poor,

the pain of non-meaning.

Then trees and hills, the texts not-texts,

communion with minds, free floating

eye then inner stillness, beyond heart’s

rage, joy of non-meaning.


Old World

This Old World, worn surface of living,

many-times stirred and layered landscape,

abolishing forever the primitive wrinkled

aged ever-new human skin on Nature’s bone,

this tangled forest tamed by the machines,

this civilised beauty, through you we pass,

one day return, though never wild again

as wild was, lawless harshness never paradise.

This Old World, less nostalgic than the New,

these pavements built on a thousand pavements,

this work of hands, patina of human minds,

leaving behind the peasant in the dust, the tribe,

the furrowed brow of ignorance, superstition,

oh there is better than this any mind can see,

but through you we must pass not to the dark

ages of false engagement with forever-altered

Earth, no way back, there’s no way back, this

weathered, sweet Old World, gone on, beyond.


Road

Burning onwards into stillness through sex

death beauty entering time, through form,

through being bound each to the other,

through voice eye and all dark perception

Burning onwards through night trail winds

storms cries entering life through trust

through empathetic transformation

hand and mind and all sweet perfections

Burning onwards, into light.


Word-Play

It’s about saying less

exploring more

the self,

least about others,

gain.

It’s about urge

of tongue to sing

a half-

unknown emotion’s

tone.

It’s about beauty

in the breath,

the way

of hearing, private

music.

It’s about one

to whom the voice

known

even if not heard

speaks.


Zen-Riddance

If you see Zen,

laugh, at the master.

If he strikes you,

answer back.

Autocratic, dead-end

righteous paths

to blunt the message

and detract.

The simple tasks,

the honest paths,

the empty universe.

There is no Way.

Here it is, no rites

no scriptures,

our natural being,

undirected world.


Inward Destruction

Crude dark worlds in which the crushed spirit dies,

the hope, the joy, the love, the heart, ah, disappointed.

That emptiness, that ache, that mortal stillness,

that bitter silence of the lonely hours.

Vicious worlds, in which the tender-minded suffer,

yet still love, no tragedy sufficient to express

the long inwardness of pain, the days of being lost,

the deep marks of abuse, the being used, the inward

Destruction.


Night-Voices

In the garden of midnight

the flowers are silent,

all the senses.

The colour of the moon’s

the colour of water,

the sky ascends the house

and once again

this planet

is part of all the process

the vast serenity

of bright exploding suns

the voiceless whorls

galaxies and veils

far-out,

the mute fabric of space-time.

Silent here too,

among the arbours,

walls and fountains,

the cisterns, the soft

pulse of silver channelled

waters, silent, beautiful,

humane, and sublime.


A Prophecy

After the last gold sunset,

the last moon,

the last rose,

and the last music,

the last page read

in the last book,

the last voice,

and the last hour,

the last light

in the last glass,

the last cloud,

the last rain,

the last flicker

of silent time,

the last dark tremor

of the heart,

the last dream

will be of you.


Sky-Drift

The sierras, the cordilleras,

far-west of continents,

the odysseys of trails,

the folds of hills,

intimate as bodies

where mind goes

gathering silence.

And the forests

dark-coaled, midnight

desert silver, oceans,

star-fields, delicate

as cobwebs, there too

we vanish dreaming.

We the clouds,

moving through

collecting landscapes,

Alhambras of air

white cities,

glittering canals

vapour-fields and valleys

sky-drifting minds.


February Blue

February blue, frost-mist off the ground,

walking through white grass, leafless trees,

walking far from thought, carrying it along,

defeating mental darkness with the senses,

no words, no waste here, all things scattered.

I walk on aeons, a light-year’s space and time,

a mind-year is neither, radiance in the air,

where tiny insects ride the spring, not-spring,

this February’s gold sunsets, cloudless nights,

a waxing moon, ground-frost, the glow of Mars.


Un-Revelation

We are not symbols.

we are not texts,

we have no names.

We are not searchers

for identity,

we are creators of identity.

We are not here

for some other purpose,

we are our purpose.

There is no enigma,

no dark mirror,

the Universe is what we see.


Anti-Scepticism

Slip-slide on the edge of

time space being,

well then, grasp

the Earth.

Darkness, we all go there,

but to find

the light,

subtle as frost-fall.

World not only

in the mind

but outside it,

see

the mind’s weakness

is limitation,

touch and be certain,

all exists.


Real

Where mind has been,

but not to linger there.

All’s receivable

as a skein of names,

true, but reality

is greater.

The Void is real

it’s all around,

the emptiness is full.

Where mind has been

but not to sink there.

All’s transient

as a swirl of mirrors

true, but being

is real,

the fire is real,

the dark is star-filled,

the night burns through.


Elementals

Earth we are,

bodies that touch,

bone makes ash

fingers

eyelids,

the delicate flesh

the shell of other.

Air we are, oh, breath,

the word’s breeze,

being, sighing,

a cry, pure

in the night,

sound, reverberation.

Water we are, dark

fluids, clear fluids,

tears of arrival,

of departure,

the wetness,

the clinging.

Fire we are that

burns through this world,

the greater yearning,

mind-lightning,

spirit electric, flame

in the universe, fire,

we elementals.


To Think a Thought

To write a book for the sake of a line,

the inside life, the outside life,

beauty of waves breaks in the bay

against the cliffs of ochred stone,

all one rising, falling moment,

to live a life for the sake of a life,

to be here, in time, and out of time,

clinging to the Idea that seems

through inwardness, eternal, and

a truth. To think a thought for

the sake of being.


Slipping By

The dead-ends known, the beauty there, form,

power, achievement, but cul-de-sacs of Mind.

Knowing nothing, forgetting all, living the moment,

free of association, something Nature delivers,

alone, the great freedom, to let our times alone,

let our age slide, one more flicker of a distant star.

No more Europe, America, Asia, no more thought

leading on over the edge, but a quiet slipping-by.


One River

Art freezes mind and leaves it behind,

and in the Moment, endlessly here,

and still the word, potential repetition.

Every single reading is translation.

The one river of time the tongue enshrines,

hard to free itself from the watery illusion,

and know how the moment alone will exist,

ready to propagate this once-created form.

For the word is Idealist.


Solids

Making it factual, making it live,

why since self’s an unimportant trail

of time and being, and then wall, fence,

February crazy-heat of warming world,

to cool blue-grey and evening silhouettes

of tangled branches, coned fir, black shrub,

high evergreens, how can all this matter?

Fire within turns crystal in expression,

like seams of quartz in stone, the endless

mindless glitter, frozen fire, all things

exceed us.


Hitching

Hitching in hot summer, the quiet lanes

through empty England forty years ago.

The same mind now, still alien, still out

in strange territory, the mysteries of all

the signs and names, inherited pointing.

History the same, a mystery how we got

here, hitching our way down silent roads,

and no way back, villages without names,

forgotten fields, the many-times ploughed

black earth, the stillness, all those centuries.


Other Lives

Gazing at other lives, we like that,

other lives symbolic, ours are fluid.

Through memories only we see ourselves,

through mirrors, others, all those deceptions.

That circumstantial world words conjure,

is a reality of sounds not things, not

the people, the events, the places –

does language communicate or create us?

Greater than us, lesser, those other lives.


By Dreaming

The ache at the heart

of Nature,

is also the light

at the core

we create

by dreaming.

Enough then of this

reality,

such solid rock,

cut trees,

night black

ground of being.

Only the dream

frees us,

the entering the bright

wild stream

of galaxies,

such energies.


Recapture

We’d wish to make out of it, a hook

for eternity, out of mind now, like this

delicate dance of thought and feeling

between us, puzzling how to recapture

the first vanished eternal lost moments.

We’d wish to imagine beyond the given,

yet need it real, like a plunge back in time,

to recreate what somehow lacks dimension,

in a new old greater free dimension. We wish

our dream to remain dream, yet be, solid.


Tremor

The centuries of the dancers and the singers

in the heart of life, not performers but deeper,

stamping, crying the rhythm of the earth,

clouds, skies, trees, stones, lost articulators

of lost identity, and vanished feeling, oh,

gazing at stars is other. Our future bright

beyond the galaxies, weighty with memories,

is the future not of body but of mind, and

a song, far-off, of the eye on cool horizons.


Another City

Stones, squares, palaces, built by the powerful,

who sought to prove power non-ephemeral,

(They vanished in a gesture!) silver dawn-light,

weathered beauty, weight, but not enough trees.

People here though, ah, pigeons, cats, dogs, life,

(Who really needs monuments?), seats, fountains

are pleasant, cool corners here, well-worn walls,

humanised meaning. (Things that laugh at power.)


Free At Last

Measuring the lingering radiation

takes us back to the start, the wild spaces

between the vibrant colours, veils of stars,

between the galaxies, and tells our future.

Meanwhile a universe to play in,

there’s an absence of deities to fill,

blue planets to find, suns to harness,

empires to evade, and the beauties

of the moment to consider, in lovely solitude.


Patience

White silence of bleached stone,

down-river old boulders,

scattered outfall, water picks

between, flycatcher on a rock

dipping to the tremor, we sit

on shelves of slate and look at

granite, down through clear

to cool pebbles. Water, unmoving

moves, something like us,

cutting form slow as a heartbeat

where the nub of time exists,

permanent in the impermanence

of pure light, and patient stone.


Traps

The specious authority of words,

a superficial identity with Nature,

criticising civilisation, using its products,

a holier than thou righteousness,

an exaggerated view of the primitive,

eating the creatures, while praising the creatures,

cultivating the powerful ‘so as to get things done’,

fame’s spurious halo shone around a name,

the ruthless commandeering of the personal

and private, in intimate unnecessary exposure,

too much talking about self,

too much talking.


Wellsprings

Creatures in all their half-voiced beauty,

their silence filled with words, cries

of perfect feeling, make us gaze,

back at ourselves, questioning.

Creatures, their intricate bonds

and true freedoms, their disinterest

in any kind of power, in duration,

their disdain for deities and statues,

their lack, always, of possession,

are all the well of light where we go

to cleanse and purify ourselves of being human.


Puzzles

Our individual fate that never satisfies us,

the disparity between the smiling name

and the deep inner lie, or the gulf between

the inner virtue and the cold hostile face,

the solid intractability of past and future,

and yet their strange wavering ghostliness,

the failure of words to convey to us even

the least touch of reality, the way we never

admit to the vast forces greater than all our

civilisation, that drive the core of our actions,

the way it always happens later than we think

but always earlier than we can control.

Our gifts of renewal. Our endless courage.


Imperative

We have to write what we are.

I, a fragile electric perception

of all star-filled deeps far out

in a storm-cleansed dark

and this small planet.

With age the heaviness fails,

all these things seem lighter,

tiny coruscations of fire-fly

history. T’ang a civilisation,

gone silk and willow eyebrows.

Nothing lasts a million years

all gone, whoosh, over the edge

of the high stone cliff singing,

to know matter is not to be

spirit, mind like a river-run.


Granite, Cloud

Admiring all those solid words, those rocks

set down, all those defining moments

of others’ crystalline lives, why then my own

so misted, frail, ephemeral to me, fleeting?

Not like solidity of tree and stone, more

like old spent light, forming galaxies

in the eye, the sharp lens, in the detector,

far-off in the deep field, all subtle clues,

to some elusive shadowy pre-existence.

Time, like boiling cloud, a vapour trail

that goes losing its past and present,

world seen, deeper than a passing cloud,

no time, ah, for all religious foolishness,

those politics. Is it the first intensity gets

lost, the clear fierce vision, or that its

deep grasp consolidates, and remains?


America

America, your vast emptinesses and horizons,

your terrible desires, dreams, innocence,

discomfort in responsibility,

your endless roads, your great river

of mighty freedoms, bitter prisons,

your fine beauty, insecure sweet women,

hard-edged men, and gentle poets,

your long sigh and grasp of revolution,

your turn of the wheel.

America, your tremor of all the colours,

glitter, gleam on the metals and waters

of modernity, your traditions,

your clasp of friendship, your hard-nosed

plunge into coruscating futures,

your power, like a child’s,

your gorgeous thrust of ceaseless experiment,

your slow gaze back at age-old Europe,

your own antiquity, of peoples, landscapes.

America, loved from afar, long line of ranges,

seabords, lakes, trails, dark-woods, deserts,

the shape of your landscapes, languages,

your grasp of the fluid continent below.

America of the creatures and the flowers,

source, be praised, of no vast religions.

America young and old, your honest self-doubt,

your marvellous assurance, opening outwards

like a galaxy, shimmering to my eyes.


Brine

Little swift creek, shallow water,

High white moon dark boulders,

wild light among green pines,

cool, cool, the silent grasses.

Raindrops’ rust on tin roof,

and damp wooden benches,

glittering off in the starlight,

truth there bright, frozen,

a brine, like ocean, or like

teardrops brimming, so,

again and again, to the well,

we go carrying our emotions,

which are patterns and not stones,

processes, true streams, not things,

forms, ah, of the midnight world,

dark renewals, bright buryings.


Be Free

Walk out of Human life,

walk into the world,

Nature burning,

all that space alive.

Walk into Nature

out of the Human world,

no more sad wars,

no more religion.

Walk into the singing

Universe.

Be free.


Absolutism

All the centuries of laughter, where caught?

The million more of wombs in wombs,

of the body delicate and loving.

The places of our fluids, vulva, seed,

the cold, heat, ages of deepest civilisation,

and what makes it so, creative virtue.

Values are precisely what we choose,

precisely, endorsing cruelty a lapse of will.

Time to learn the beautiful absolutism

of all those centuries of loving laughter.


Un-Waning

How to cry with the power and silence

of the Universe, which is a cry

though we hear nothing,

how to escape the flesh with the

eternally young mind, or how to find

the self escaping us in memory,

are impossibilities made no easier

by the beauty of this changeless moon

and symbol of mutation,

or this garden where the stars merge

with the dark sounds of the fountain,

nor your presence who are indeed a Moon.


Another Kind of Faith

So I never understood the religion,

an unnecessary hypothesis too far,

contrary to the purer discipline of

Occam’s razor, then the clear absence

of all evidence, in intellect or feeling,

and then too the innate contradiction

between the universal and eternal

power proposed and contingent evil.

Some are born to serve, it may be,

others to question every command,

born rebels, only there was only

a glaring absence to rebel against.

Science and Nature were the spheres

I understood, without comprehending

their endless intricacies, dance of forms,

a faith, yes, but a different kind of faith,

rational, questioning, and evidential.

And values? Values come from our

deep history, the nurturing breast,

empathy and co-operation, all our

evolutionary past, focused yes once

by religion, but now free of frozen

rituals and their regrettable obedience.

Time to reclaim the realms of spirit,

from the dying religions of the past.


Energy, Moment and the Individual

Like opening the gate into the garden,

is opening the mind to the emptiness,

the void of the universe, lack of meaning,

the beauty there, pure, intention-less.

And that lack of authority, possession,

is a freedom from demands, freedom

into which the mind sinks with relief,

we are not owed, nor do we owe.

Mind is in the world, world in mind,

so realism, idealism are both true

and I will end I know where I began

in child’s wonder, and man’s dream,

a deep and subtle freedom of the spirit,

acknowledgement of an eternity

beyond allegiance, all open here to

Energy, Moment and the Individual.


Index Of First Lines