The flowers whirl away
In the wind like snow.
The thing that falls away
Is myself.

- The Prime Minister Kintsune

Here's a timely poem I read this morning by Gary Snyder:

The Politicians

Running around here & there
stirring up trouble and bothering people
a bunch of lushes –
            fern leaves and cloud:
the world was so chilly and dark –

Before long that sort
will up and rot all by themselves
and be washed away by the rain
and afterwards, only green fern.

And when humanity is laid out like coal
somewhere some earnest geologist
will note them in his notebook.

- Gary Snyder from The Back Country

That poem is from a book I have called Surrealist Poetry in English. It has some poems by Ron Padgett in it. There has to be a good link to some Padgett Poems. I'll see if I can dig one up.

good morning poem:

by Bert Meyers

Birds drip from the trees.
The moon's a little goat
over there on the hill;
dawn, as blue as her milk,
fills the sky's tin pail.

The air's so cold as a gas station
glitters in an ice-cube.
The freeway hums like a pipe
when the water's on.
Streetlights turn off their dew.

The sun climbs down from a roof,
stops by a house and strikes
its long match on a wall,
takes out a ring of brass keys
and opens every door.

skp and I eat at Pasta Bella in Sebastopol quite a bit. On the wall there is a poem by Mary Oliver. As we were eating dinner on Saturday night, I was thinking about Fray Day 4. I was amazed to see how well this poem captured my thoughts about the event. It probably sounds like one of the hundreds of "inspirational story" emails you get every day. ;) Here it is anyway:

Wild Geese
by Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

All last night and
This morning still,
Snow falling in the deepest
Ah, to see the autumn leaves
Scattering in my home.

- Dogen


Let me gaze, gaze forever
into that single, vaguely violet eye:
my fingertips dilate
the veiled pupil circumscribed
by crescent leaves of metal
overlapping, fine as foil, and oiled.

Let me walk, walk with its weight
as telling as gold, declaring
precious works packed tight:
the air is light,
all light, pure light alive
with the possibility of capture.

Let all, all be still until
the cleaver falls: I become female,
having sealed secure
in the quick clicked womb of utter black, bright semen
of a summer day, coiled fruit
of my eyes' axed rapture.

- John Updike

As certain as color
Passes from the petal,
Irrevocable as flesh,
The gazing eye falls through the world.

- The Poetess Ono No Komachi (translated by Kenneth Rexroth in One Hundred Poems from the Japanese.)

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