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Monday, May 22, 2017

May 22

The whole point about teaching
is to remove the need
for the teacher.

-----------------------------------------

There is much to be heard
in silence,
pure, balanced, serene
and perfect.

-----------------------------------------

Wanting, affirming and
praying for something:
not enough.
We must act.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

May 16

There's that 
which I can control 
and that I can't. 
Hope I figure that out.

-------------------------------------

Sometimes we need to
do more than our best, and one
of those times is now.

------------------------------------
Snipers of fear.
Hurdles of worry.
Stumbling blocks of regret.
Worthless.

-----------------------------------

The Rev says God
Could not be everywhere,
so mothers were created.

Friday, May 12, 2017

May 12


Adage for today:
Never mistake caffeine
For enthusiasm

-------------------------------------

The news does not
show us reality,
neither human
nor divine.

------------------------------------

Love is otherworldly,
but heartbreak is too much
of the planet.


Buddha taught we’re each given
ten thousand joys
and ten thousand sorrows.

-----------------------------------------

Sometimes when I wake,
it’s too, too dark, but I know
the light is coming. 

-----------------------------------------

Sometimes I go
the extra mile,
others sitting still,
writing my poems.

------------------------------------------

Why do the French bother
with all those letters
when they don’t pronounce them? 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

17 times 3

Eternal Verity
You are.
Be still and know
you are
both the painter and the paint.
You are.
You are.
Be still and. Know
you are
both the singer and the song.
You are.
You are.
Be still and know
you are
both the dreamer and the dream.
You are.
#seventeensyllablesfortwentyseventeentimesthree

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

More 17's



The news does not
show us reality,
neither human
nor divine.
-------------------------------------------

Love is otherworldly,
but heartbreak is too much
of the planet.

--------------------------------------------

Buddha taught we’re each given
ten thousand joys
and ten thousand sorrows.

---------------------------------------

Sometimes when I wake,
it’s too, too dark, but I know
the light is coming.

 ----------------------------------------

Why do the French bother
with all those letters
when they don’t pronounce them?
-----------------------------------------

The whole point about teaching
is to remove the need
for the teacher.
-----------------------------------------

I do prefer literature 
to money,
but not to poetry.

-----------------------------------------
To enjoy peace and calm,
meditate every day.
It's Om's Law.

-----------------------------------------

You are.
Be still and know
you are both
the singer and the song.
You are.

-----------------------------------------

You are.
Be still and know
you are both
the sculptor and the marble.
You are,
-----------------------------------------

You are.
Be still and know
you are both
the painter and the paint.
You are.

----------------------------------------

Red, white and blue,
divided by orange,
equals
dark night of the soul.


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Cataract

Early eye doctor
appointment this date,
morning poem
will have to wait.

------------------------------------

Cataract surgery today,
so I’ll just simply say,
“be seeing you.”

------------------------------------

I’m living in grace,
bright, new left eye on my face,
gratitude in place,

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Time to Eat


today we are asked to weave 3 of 6 words into a poem, all 6 for extra credit...can you guess the words?...my effort:

Feeding Time

There once were four
birdfeeders in our yard,
two seed, two humming,
festooned with the usual
red and yellow.
After we erected
a glass fence to
keep a hungry pest
of a rambling coyote
from our household feline,
said cat became too
fond of birds and
the hummingbirds became
too fond of cracking
their necks on glass
they could not see.
After a few fatal hiccups,
wincing at the sight,
the seed beds are
gone, and the sugar
water is elsewhere,
but all the birds remain,
hoping for a change
of heart and mind.
We see them at
their accustomed
feeding time,
large and small,
colorful and plain,
doves and wrens,
tits and orioles.

And one,
very observant
hawk.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Cooking Bliss


I love to cook
especially for friends.
There's the food, of course,
the stories we tell,
and before an evening ends,
I simply feel satisfied,
where in the past,
I'd feel stress.
There's a simple reason
for this emotion,
my gustatory happiness.
I’ve learned to take my time,
the secrets of mis en place,
a sip of the cooking wine,
well, maybe an entire glass.
But mostly what it is,
the core of my cooking bliss:
when I peel the potatoes,
I peel the potatoes.
When I cut the tomatoes,
I cut the tomatoes.
When I stir the soup,
I stir the soup.
When I chop the greens,
I chop the greens.
That’s all it takes,
so it seems.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Faith

I have an old,
old man’s body,
but I know,
know this:
there’s a happy,
happy child, deep,
deep in my heart.
Now you might say how,
how can I be so,
so sure, when I can’t,
can’t see it,
not even with the best,
best mirror.
Well, I might just,
just answer
that I know,
know this in the same,
same way I know,
know there’s an Uncaused
Cause that is All,
all there is.

Monday, April 24, 2017

faith

Simple Beliefs

Tastes like water.
Smells like water.
Feels like water.
Must be a mirage.
----------------------------------------
Zen

Sit on you mat,
Zen technocrat.
Simple as that.
Let your worries scat.

---------------------------------------------
Earth Day

Every day is Earth Day,
each minute a chance
to redeem ourselves.



Thursday, April 20, 2017

a little Buddhism

No doubt, life is suffering..
How does one respond?
Truth or dare?
Who Knows?

---------------------------------------

No doubt, life is a challenge.
How does one respond?
Play or hide?
I know.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Being Remembered



The trick is to live a good life,
without worrying about rewards,
be it from friends or your gods.
If they judge you and are fair,
they’ll admire your effort,
even when you fail.
If you have no gods,
the trick is still to live a good life.
If you have only a few friends,
or even no friends,
you can still live with charity.
If you are steadfast in your goals,
devout in your goodness,
true in your loving kindness,
someone’s memory will hold you dear,
long after you are gone.

Monday, April 17, 2017

and the beat goes on


Tastes like water.
Smells like water.
Feels like water.
Must be a mirage.

------------------------------------------

We’re not all brave souls.
Some are the audience
when the brave take their bow.

------------------------------------------

I’ll have two
of whatever she’s having.
If it’s good,
maybe one more.

----------------------------------------

I see you,
I love you,
and I support you
in your magnificence

-------------------------------------


Sometime I forget
who I am.
Fortunately,
Spirit remembers.

------------------------------------

It is not that guilt
is bad or good.
It’s that it simply
does not work.

------------------------------------

It seems to me that
life usually turns out
as it is meant to.

------------------------------------

I am no longer
making a living.
I am, though,
making a life.

-----------------------------------

I won’t run or dance,
but my heart sings when you’re near.
Nature loves lovers.

----------------------------------

Winter’s fire is banked,
air dancing above cold coals.
At peace now in spring.

---------------------------------------


For the peace
I crave in life,
I need only myself
to be present.

---------------------------------------

Washboard abs are okay,
but have you ever tried
jelly-filled donuts?

---------------------------------------

I ask if this is
my opinion or
one implanted by others.

-------------------------------------

I am still
cultivating happiness
for my life.
There’s more to do.

------------------------------------

When I bury my mind
and expose my heart,
you’ll see my body move.

------------------------------------

It seems to me that
life usually turns out
as it is meant to.

--------------------------------------


Encouragement and praise
lift me up higher than
competition does.

---------------------------------------

Am I choosing my path,
or is the path choosing me?
I don’t yet know.

--------------------------------------

I wonder what it’s like when I meditate.
Clouds slowly drifting by.

------------------------------------------------

Clinging to even
just one “truth”
makes it hard to hear 
anything new.

------------------------------------------------

With alcohol,
It always seems to me,
two is not
better than one.



Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Guilt-Free Prayer

Guilt-Free Prayer

If it please God,
may my friends forgive me
my mistakes,
mostly unintended.
If it please God,
may the world forgive me
my interruptions to the flow,
my combative honesty,
my angry outbursts,
mostly uninintended.
If it please God,
may I write from my heart,
sing with my soul,
accept praise and criticism,
mostly without judgement.

a couple more


How do you spend your days?
What do you enjoy doing?
Now blend those two.

-------------------------------------------------


Sometimes I go
the extra mile,
others sitting still,
writing my poems..








.



Sunday, April 9, 2017

More April Seventeen's

I have many withs,
and a lot of withouts.
I’m okay with both states.

--------------------------------------------

The face of war never changes.
Old men hide behind words.
Young men die,

 ------------------------------------------


It was sold as gold.
It looks like silver.
Nope.
It’s solid arsenic.

-------------------------------------------

The Buddha was asked
if he was a god.
He replied,
I am awake

------------------------------------------

Enlightened.
Hallelujah!
Content.
Hallelujah!
Peace, Love and Joy.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Doctor Seuss Does Panic Attacks




From the halls of Montezuma to a hedge-lined nursery, I’d no idea what it was, what was happening to me. It was a beautiful day, early in May, children at play, free to be free. There were flags unfurled to a mid-Spring breeze, no reasons to fret, and all was at ease. Such a sunny scene, no fear of showers, no nerves at work, I was just buying flowers. Suddenly it hit me, bright lights, roaring sound, the flowers went flying, me too, to the ground, with chest beating wildly, gasping for air, no idea what to do, I just had to leave there. Eventually I calmed, tried looking back, realized this wasn’t the first such attack, with thoughts of death, pure fight or flight, with no clue as to cause, try as I might. Later, in treatment, I learned what it was, it became all too obvious, the reasons, the cause. The children that day were all Vietnamese, no danger to me, nor their families, but that has little to do with the truth, don’t you see, there’s no logic to emotions in PTSD. I’m better now, but I’ll never be free. It’s a life sentence, this thing, this PTSD. I have coping skills now to assist, and people who know, and little by little, it improves as I grow,, a little bit older, a lot more wise, so now when the attacks start, I just close my eyes, notice my breathing, count the beats of my heart. It’s not a total solution, but hey, it’s a start. 

Friday, April 7, 2017

Vibrations



It might just be my fading ears,
but it seems to me
those new, thick windows and sliders
throughout our forever home
have stolen most of the outside sounds:
the cars and trucks
(but not the ambulances),
the roofers shouting
from the condos across the street,
(but not their supervisor)
the lawn mowers
(but not the leaf blowers).
Sadly, the small birds,
(but not the doves),
and, alas, the wind chimes.

But there’s one window
we did not replace,
a tallish, narrow,
louvered one in my bathroom,
next to where I write my poems.
It has an odd knob,
like the one that opens the gas fireplace valve.
When that window’s open, louvers ajar,
especially in the morning,
I can hear the traffic from the freeway,
a mile or so away,
the working folks on their daily trek south.
They start in the dark of night,
and return again, before dusk.
Long retired now,
I wonder about them.
Are they happy?
Do they like their work?
(If not, why do they do it?)
Fear?
(probably).
I send them a little prayer,
wishing them joy,
hoping they find their bliss,
before the sounds of
can’t and don’t and mustn’t
freeze them before the daily tidal wave
(or, at least, I hope they learn to surf).

Thursday, April 6, 2017

April Continues

What were your noises made,
the sounds you heard,
before your parents were born?

-----------------------------------------------

The brighter the light,
the darker the shadow.
I can find love in both.

----------------------------------------------

It takes a lot of love
to survive those
husband and wife arguments

---------------------------------------------

Nature doesn’t rush things,
it doesn’t try.
It just does.
Plants simply grow.

-------------------------------------------

We’re all worthy of
a few daily moments of
peace, calm and quiet.



Sunday, April 2, 2017

April Fools Plus One

The present moment
is the only moment.
Might as well settle in.


-----------------------------


Don’t mess around.
Whatever you are doing,
do the hell out of it.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

It's PAD time

Grand gestures
are not needed.
Small, quiet kindnesses
are more useful.

--------------------------------

Don’t mess around.
Whatever you are doing,
do the hell out of it.

------------------------------

Recalling my first
meditation ,
there is nothing to
remember.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

more 17 as April nears

I have more than I need,
though all plots have weeds.
Now I just need a seed.

We’re all just
passing through.
So what will you do
with the time
left to you?

It’s useful to attend
to what opens my heart,
awakens my soul.

Every day is
I Care About You Day,
including all of you.

When the world wears
on me, politics chafe,
there’s always our flowers.


Don’t give up.
Have courage.
Fight back.
Distribute your strength
to those in pain.

What lies behind,
what lies ahead,
are fine,
but, oh,
what lies within us.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

some more 17 syllables for 2017

Mindfulness requires engagement.
If we see something,
we must act.


My only hand-to-hand
combat now is when
I merge my palms to pray.

But wait, there’s also
those times of bowing
to friends, saying
namaste.

When I can’t come up
with an answer, I know
that Grace will carry me

The longer I live,
the more I see
Divinity in everything.

My poetry spreads
at the rate it is meant to.
No publishers, please.


Guilt, shame, sadness and remorse
moved my past life.
Grace will carry me home.

I am ever striving for your happiness.
Have I been successful?

Monday, March 13, 2017

a few more...

I find faith
to be healthy,
a little doubt
to be good insurance.

I wake up in wonder.
According to Socrates,
I’ll soon be wise.

You gotta be a little crazy
to have an imagination.


I now seek
the longest grocer’s lines,
and am never disappointed.

I attend Seaside CSL
to learn how to think,
not what to think.


Glad to wake with just one
decision to make each day:
to be happy

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

I'm happy

Glad to wake with only one
decision to make each day
to be happy

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

I'm not deluded...

I’m not deluded
by how other folks think
my life should look and be.


Let me swim in the water
of the present,
sustained by the here and now.


The past is ever with us.
We can hope to remember
the lessons.

Monday, March 6, 2017

and, we continue on in 2017

Seeing how things are
is hard when all you can see
is how you are.

And the wise Doctor said:
Don’t let your good
stand in the way
of your great!

Even when he
doesn’t understand her,
he still loves
just who she is.

A leap of faith
is not a jump from A to B.
It’s a jump from A.

Waking up is just not
always a comfortable
experience.

Attending to another’s needs is
Spirit-lifting,
For them, for us.



Doing work that I am
not paid to do
feels like
a great victory.

So happy to have
realized that God is not
unhappy with me.

Friday, February 24, 2017

a few more seventeen's

I have been given so much,
and now I am called
to share my blessings.

I am enjoying
my human experience.
It’s a perfect fit.

I love real people,
especially the odd ones,
a little off.

Everyone I meet is a teacher,
sometimes for better,
others worse.

When I'm searching 
for happiness,
first I seek
a little gratitude.

Please be generous with me.
 I am imperfect.
But I am trying.

I try hard
to make great decisions.
I try harder
to be a good man.

I’ve been thinking about
my fellow Marines.
All gave some.
Some gave all.




Thursday, February 16, 2017

more seventeen syllables...


Aiming to be calm, mindful,
as the world’s  begging me to
lose my cool


Hoping I can find
more understanding,
more compassion
to offer.

When my dreams are
more vivid than reality,
I forget to act.

Please be generous with me.
 I am imperfect.
But I am trying.

I love real people,
especially the odd ones,
a little off.

Everyone I meet is a teacher,
sometimes for better,
others worse.

I sometimes write
long poems because
It takes too long
To write shorter ones.

Thanks, reader, for taking
a break from The News
and enjoying yourself.

We’re born for these times,
and I am willing to do
whatever it takes.

I’m doing okay
accepting others,
less so forgiving myself.

I just heard an old
Western adage:
When your horse is dead,
get off it.



Monday, February 13, 2017

Fourteen Words for Love

14 Words for Love

All you need is love.
Maybe a chocolate malt, too.
Oh, and some wi-fi.

Nearly half
a century together,
and I still love you
even more each day.

I pray for peace,
and for calm.
You remain the answer
to my prayers.

Imperfect as I am,
I still work daily
to be worthy
of your love.

Oh for young love again,
when I so needed
the lessons of old age.

The simplest meal,
If it’s prepared with love,
becomes a work of art.

Cherishing you is the source of
my happiness and good fortune.
Daily problems vanish.

We must have loved before,
in another time, place, existence.
How else explain it?

If love is a lottery,
I’m so glad
You took a chance on me.

I stare in the dark,
while you sleep,
amazed at how
lucky I am.

I have a secret.
I’m in love with
my best friend.
Think she knows?

Holding your love close,
not wanting it to fade,
like a perfect Spring day.


There’s a time for
passionate love,
also one for
becoming quiet.
Both are sweet.

It is only when
I forget my needs
that I can begin
to love.


It’s pure and kind
and free and unlimited,
given without needs.
It’s unconditional.
Love!

More Seventeen Syllables for 2017


Aiming to be calm, mindful,
as the world’s  begging me to
lose my cool


Hoping I can find
more understanding,
more compassion
to offer.


Please be generous with me.
 I am imperfect.
But I am trying.

I love real people,
especially the odd ones,
a little off.

Everyone I meet is a teacher,
sometimes for better,
others worse.

When my dreams are
more vivid than reality,
I forget to act.

I sometimes write
long poems because
It takes too long
To write shorter ones.



I’m doing okay
accepting others,
less so forgiving myself.

I just heard an old
Western adage:
When your horse is dead,
get off it.

I have been given so much,
and now I am called
to share my blessings.

I am enjoying
my human experience.
It’s a perfect fit.

I see you,
I love you,
and I support you
in your magnificence.

We’re born for these times,
and I am willing to do
whatever it takes.

Thanks, reader, for taking
a break from The News
and enjoying yourself.

Hallelujah,
Hallelujah,
Hallelujah,
Transformation,

Joy.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Seventeen Syllables for Twenty Seventeen

#seventeensyllablesfortwentyseventeen

Memories fade, but
not so good friends.
I’m so happy I have a few.

I’m feeling a little
Pineapple-ly today
In life’s fruit salad.

Grace, gratitude and generosity
seem to work
just fine for me.

I’m aiming mostly
for calm, happy,
not cool, rich or desirable.

I now live the life I choose,
with friendship and Spirit
at its center.

I affirm today,
twenty-seventeen is
a joy-filled year for me.

After  enlightenment,
there remains so much truth
left to discover.

How thrilling to realize
we have purpose.
More so to fulfill it.

I’d like to learn
to speak hummingbird.
They seem to have
a lot to say.

Easy to see, as I age,
I’m always the victim
of my own rage.

Clouds on the horizon
remind me my roof
needs attention, a mend.

Darkness from the east
reminds me I am needed
to be a good friend.

From Russia with love.
I think I’ll just
hibernate for
the next four years.



True right thoughts
and right actions
will usually lead
to right results.

Serene patience in a grocery
checkout line.
Ha, ha, ha , ha, ha!

I learned to live with pain.
Can I help make America love again?

There is suffering in the world.
It can be overcome.
Yes it can.

Everything is impermanent.
Everything, except true ohana.

Even in retirement,
one might work
joyfully and peacefully.

Breathing in with grace,
exhaling with gratitude,
life is just too good.




And so they decided
from day one:
They go low,
we go high.
Thank you.

She said, do what you can.
If you can’t, you just can’t.
Nothing else to it.


Having borne guilt, shame,
regret and sadness,
I have no room left for hate.


Sirens in the distance
do not trouble me.
Too busy with the birds.

Just sitting in my room,
lost in my thoughts.
Suddenly,
I find myself.

I am attempting
to be open, cheerful,
and, at the same time,
brave.

My brain doesn’t know
what’s real or imagined.
I might as well dream.

MY brain tells me to
criticize, to run my mouth.
My heart wants to help.

For the second time
in fifty years, I’m beset
by Agent Orange.

Max cat playing on
the floor with his little toys.
Alternative mice.

We oft speak from our
Spiritual sources.
She has hers, I have mine.

Sometimes, it’s a mess
when you say yes. Even so,
it’s hard to say no.

What will I do
in place of my friends?
What will they do
in place of me?
When hiking, I go slow, observe.
Quite Zen.
Of course,
I’m also quite old.

I wonder if I
accept wondrous gifts in a
wonder-filled manner

You will discover
unexpected treasure, says
the fortune cookie.

There’s a time for
doing things, and one for
becoming quiet.
Both are dear.

You are always welcome
at social events,
says the fortune cookie.

I will do my best
to remember to pray when
things are going well.

It seems best, when in doubt,
to err on the side of
communication.



The guard hummingbird
in our backyard lives alone.
That’s as it should be.

So happy for the
joy in my life now. I am
filled with abundance.

All prayers are answered,
but God’s rejections
are just Sprit’s protections.

Someone should do something about this.
What?
Me?
Oh, yeah.
I.
Am.

Someone.