Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Seek The Harvest

With your hands
you seek the harvest
in compost piles, pig manure, garden beds
and the handle of a hoe that leaves
calluses and blisters

In your hands
you hold the harvest of the earth
cook it in a heavenly sauce
let it fill all who will humbly receive

See you hands
become the harvest
it is now growing in you
give thanks
press the palms together
break them in your labor
giving each piece with joy

I wrote this poem for the Harvest Thanksgiving Celebration in October 2012 at the Asian Rural Institute. I read the poem as a performance during the event. I worked with a Japanese poet who was also volunteering at ARI. Tomi helped me translate my poetry into Japanese and I helped him translate his poem into English. It was a beautiful exchange of poetic and cultural fruits. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Not So Simplicity

On the day that you realize
not all white, American, once-where-Buddhists
that all beings are one

because they hate roaches

you will also hear of free ranging Jersey cows
in Georgia
eating out of mother’s flower bed
milk so fatty the skim can be butter simply
seal in a jar and let the kids make a game
of rolling it back and forth across the floor

as the farm van climbs the hill at the
end of the workday, filled with fall
the smell of deep soil and fresh carrots

you will also see the dirt drying to a grey powder across
your hands, showing well the lines where
the skin prunes
curling in upon itself after
tugging all day
at the earth

in the dream worthy blues
of your darkened bedroom
you will tell your wife that she

never has and never will understand you

which is true
for everyone but God
you don’t have to tell her that way

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Dream Home

The deep yellow sunlight baring through the window of my west facing third story dorm room. I totter around these tight commons and narrow shiters.

I've tried to call this home. The twitching in my eye tells me I've failed.

For four years I’ve been drinking my coffee while standing in the shower, letting the spin of the day burn off.

It is an odd existence of fluorescent lighting and empty hallway paranoia. Incomplete sounds slurped into pipes and wires and pushed through walls.