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I want to write a poem about silence just like almost every other poet ever probably and am of course twisted up immediately in words but here is why I want to write a poem about silence silencers all sorts of silencers metal ones and flesh ones and metal ones that cut flesh with their…

Disaster/Relief

  On Monday evening, which happened to be the evening of my 43rd birthday, my husband came home with the mail and dropped it on the desk as usual. And it was the usual pile of bills and holiday catalogs and appeals for end-of-year donations. And the Princeton Alumni Weekly. For years, when this magazine…

Hawk/Mountain/Cry

This post is an adaptation of a talk I gave at the Santa Rosa Creek Zen Center on May 11, 2015.   I. There’s an old, well-known haiku by the poet Basho that goes like this: Even in Kyoto— hearing the cuckoo cry, I long for Kyoto. In koan practice with the Pacific Zen Institute,…

Personal Archives II, or Poetry

I have a new love. It’s called poetry.  I have an old love. It’s called poetry, too. They are finally meeting one another, in the space of my mind. While cleaning out my computer several months ago, I found a rich text file that held just one poem, with no attribution or signature.  I honestly…

No Alchemy Required

At my Zen center on Monday night Zen student and physicist Chris Gaffney said that some things seem “impossible,” but they happen anyway. Like the way that time slows down when a body is in motion, or when it flows more closely to the earth. There is a small clearing with an old tree on…