Saturday, December 31, 2016

what i am doing
forging dreams
encouraging flights of fancy

anything can be
that can be


Thursday, December 29, 2016

                           for evan and fonta

visiting from out of town

at my friend's house
we sing the "throwing things out
the second story" song
as we toss the christmas tree
out the open picture window

then we clean up all the dry
pine needles

something of a family

the twins are 4 and his daughter is 7
smart happy kids
who remember my
improvised ad hoc yoga moves

do the abe lincoln memorial pose!
do the eiffel tower!
do the thinker!

i sing for them 'bat in my face'
and make paper boats
read them picture books
play the piano

i remember how it was
when my kids were small
a forever forever forever
contained cosy and small

it was obvious
we'd always have the books we read
as nearby as each other

how could anyone
be gone for long at all


Late December
Clayton Street
San Francisco

Sunday, December 25, 2016

not knowing every little thing
makes each moment what it is

beautiful awesome confusing
elated heart breaking funny

we know some of the shapes
some of the shapes

ultimately what they do or act
is how you'd like them to be


Christmas Day

Saturday, December 24, 2016

on christmas night
i watch my dad wash the dishes
he takes his time

cold for napa
below 38 the lights of the valley

the rug is squared
extra leaf added to the table
i did homework on

it comes to me
in this warm bright room

we don't know
where we are going but
you do know who you love


Friday, December 23, 2016

there's nothing to it more
and nothing's known for sure

other than two
on a plane to sacramento

watching a video on a phone
holding hands


Wednesday, December 21, 2016

in the midwest
i give a shell with my christmas cards
to new coworkers and new friends

keepsakes from my favorite beach in Huntington
southern california
where the waves are always warm

it occurs to me how much i miss
seeing that beach like i did everyday
picking up shells at dawn

but how wonderful it is
to have so many new friends
i can give a Christmas shell too


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

a dream my whole life
was floating on a pool of water

each part like a small bit
of leaf or wood assembled artfully

other peoples lives and mine
mingled on gently bobbing waves

the water itself was clear
and had no bottom


Monday, December 19, 2016

i dream about the car
all night long

about the heater core
if it is leaking

if the head gasket
has a crack

i really know
so little

still i dream
of answers

beyond my expertise
shiny cars


Sunday, December 18, 2016

i keep digging through lines here
as if i will find you

but you are gone and it has been
a long time

the fond time i wish to recreate
is not the time it was

and you in real life barely remember
this person fair

because there have been so many
more clever and appealing

but with some once loved loved true
love goes on

even though the beloved is so worldly
even cares not


you understand
when they talk about
turning over your body
for fame comfort or glory

some who believe or say
they have not done any trade
quid pro quo for this or that
allowing to be handled

those are the corrupt
the ones that have given
but say they did not
they prey on the innocent

what may separate one
is not to revel in degradation
to say trades like this are good
or we want anything like it

as for redemption
no one knows possibly
or in action the right conviction

if you can
give refuge
and ask for nothing


no drama other than me
saying i found the moon
in a matchbox and then lost it
and i cried


sinking or rising up
stone Buddhas in the grass

bobbing like rafts
in this sea of imaginings

i could be moved
be blissful or bemused

however i see it
i see you too

looking at the Bodhisattvas
surrounded by the grass


for Walter
be inescapably beautiful
by loving yourself completely
by loving yourself competently
by doting on you most first

paradoxically you'll find
this wise selfishness
if you follow through
more love for all

your beauty will refine
your beauty will be bright
those around you too
become beautiful like you


Bass Lake

i choose to see you
in a certain way
that renders me blind

thinking this scene
person or face for you
complements best

but it is a cover
or a binding i foist
defacing your essence

me lacking the courage
or having such ruinous vanity

embellishing what should be respected
or tampering with innocent and fine


i know people
i cannot see
because i insist
on i i i


Friday, December 16, 2016

someone far away
like a cinematic trick
they're right sized then
one day for some reason
you only see their image

day after day an icon
getting smaller and smaller
as it shrinks it gets brighter
finer in detail and then
blurrier and blurrier

someone far away
sighing and hoping
winning or losing
going on with each day
alone or with others
for some reason not here


Sunday, December 11, 2016

snow snow
falling snow

covering gently
everything below

sleeping fields
woods and lake

any tracks
you will make

all under this
blanket of white


December 2016
Bass Lake

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

they may write a thousand things
but do not know the words
or stop to feel anything

would someone be brave enough
to turn a verse they wrote themselves
or be any kind of a man

i'd say chivalry here is lacking
but not every one is dull some do know
a modestly without all the act

even make a verse or two
show in lines some convincing
of the appreciation of you

how you stir a contemplation
of mystery and of sweetness where
even the impossible can come true

but the lines now are many
mystery or sentiment wear out
with such dwelling

last verses done with some regret
for lack of skill or time or bravery
if only a poet could be as true as cupid

our nights are unequal
like many i have darker ones

some sleep lightly
with any stirring or
horror or regret
of what they did

they might be
empty or have
no mind

nothing is awaiting them
as the road narrows
at appointed time

our nights are unequal
we are who we are and become

i resist taking
the midnight vote

counting the
as it goes
green yellow red
over and over

i sleep
and dream
of a private room

a pale bowl
and a yellow spoon


Sunday, December 04, 2016


                   snowflake                                                snowflake

              snowflake                                                       snowflake                                  snowflake

          snowflake                                           magic snow flake

             snowflake                             snowflake                                               snowflake

                                   snowflake                                                               snowflake              

                           snowflake                               snowflake                                   snowflake        



to support the assertion
you can catch the magic snowflake
on the tip of your nose
if you practice

or snow falling perfectly
all night as you dream

the heated sideboards
tapping and pinging

waking up you may think
what beautiful flakes

how does this go
such perfectly falling snow

each signifying a world
a person a place or a dream

or signifying nothing
unspoken simple

absolute serene


form an alliance with your self
by being tolerant internally

extend the courtesy
you automatically consider
towards others

towards you

you'll find
more beauty inside and
outside this way

the world more like home
a warm place you can live in


Saturday, December 03, 2016

i entered knowing
now i am not knowing

i came in clear
now i may not be seeing

i can reset my surrealism
as easily as i can wallpaper a room

i aim to ensnare
some force
inscrutable truth

i was a gopher on a bike
but now i am a valiant widow

my son is my consciousness
killed on a crusade

now the crusade is a lit window
and cycle is a moth in sky

open to suggestions
any proposition
is beloved

will blow me to salvation

yet how much real irony
or tragedy
contained in a play

i act in and direct

i came in with paper
i do not know where it has gone

it may be this paper
i write on now

i'm waiting for beautiful poetry
to come into the room

but i have too much
erasmus and kant in my head

my supposed humble being
is so loud in knowingly unknowing

poetry walks by and sights
she goes to another cafe

my forced gentleness
i have become a brute

wallpapering and
widowing myself

but i will never give up

the idea of somehow

despite all of this

no one is separated
from grace


home is a place
where you work on you vices

home is a place
where you burnish your virtue

home is
a place for the heart
                  the mind
                  the mind
                  the mind

home is unforgotten

home is love

home is trust

where you can be naked
and cook or watch TV

where you can be unclothed
and natural

with a lover

is a happy forever

is balanced

home is
a place for the heart
                  the mind
                  the soul
                  the self

                  the now
                  the later
                  the best

                  a sigh
                  a hug

Thursday, December 01, 2016

you begin gently moving
through shapely & self curated scenes
full of luxury and sometimes terror
all the mechanisms of sleep

blind force of a lucid dreamer
who says these grand things that ebb and flow
are true with no more permanence of a fog
money and fortunes blisses and curses

beautiful wayward dreamer
who can wake as soon as they wish
into clarity and clear light never sullied
the brightest of all bright selves

like a perfect high star
that never sets over an ocean
full of tossing sleepers and seekers
rafts of their own making through nights

you with a host of other angels
saying awake! urging dreamers
in imagined darkness to shake off
our peculiar toilsome sleep

wondering about home
between flakes of snow

or will these fields tell
hush hush is that a sign

or a bell from a church
open tonight late

i see the light in you
then follow it wondering

all transitory here
like other time zones

other cities and fields
full of signs and people

other church bells dusk
wondering about home

hush hush is that a sign
or a bell


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

can it be found
can it be lost

the self
the highest sense

for a moment
you can play

pretend that
you are separated

but in the
long view

you were
merely at play

like a child
can make

anything a
harmless idyll


a winter jacket ordered
for winter boots

pockets on the inside
and outside of jacket

the lake has ice
that ebbs a bit but grows

when it seems
nothing is alive

some hardy squirrels
start their day

they go on duty
find things to bring home


Bass Lake

Saturday, November 26, 2016

if you could live forever
you'd be even more confused
than you are now

today no snow
no grey

silver puddles
green grass

everything living
making life


with only now
in mind


Bass Lake

after much practice
i see what i really am

two hands two feet
two eyes and a big mouth


Friday, November 25, 2016

how do your dreams turn out
as good as dreaming them i hope

when you know where you are
every dream comes true

when you're in the stream
all that comes is keenly true


Bass Lake
day after thanksgiving
slate grey sky

water goes drip drip
from balconies

new wiper blades
for the truck

a few clumps of snow
rolled by my son

they're the only snow
left as a snowman

snow figure
looks like a bunny


Bass Lake

Thursday, November 24, 2016

thankful on this day

thankful on this day
snow slush
a store being open
for that last can
of yams or pie crust

thankful for family
friends and even
bad drivers or
my annoying cousins

we're all part
of a grand planned
or miraculous wow
just in time ain't
it nice thank-


A Recipe for Orange Sweet Potatoes

2 twelve ounce cans of frozen orange juice 1 forty ounce can of cut sweet potatoes in light syrup 1/4 cup dry sherry 2 cups walnuts (whole or broken into halves) Oven preheated to 350 degrees Open the sweet potato can and drain the liquid from the sweet potatoes. Put the potatoes in a glass baking dish (I used a dish that was 14 inches by 10 inches) in one even layer. Then pour over the potatoes the two cans of frozen orange juice. If the orange juice is still frozen, or semi-frozen, just let the orange juice melt over the sweet potatoes. Add 1/4 cup dry sherry and mix in the 2 cups of walnuts. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and let it marinate for at least an hour, longer if you want the walnuts to be softer. You can either stick it in the fridge, or just leave it out at room temperature. After marinating, take off the plastic wrap and cover the dish with aluminum foil. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. While baking, see if the liquid covering the sweet potatoes is bubbling. Then they are done. Watch out, the dish is very hot when it comes out of the oven. Serves 4-6 depending on how much they like sweet potatoes. I keep asking my mom for this recipe every Thanksgiving and Christmas the past few years, so I figure if I put it up here, I'll have it when I need it for Christmas dinner. I know if I don't have this dish at Thanksgiving, I won't feel like I had Thanksgiving at all.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

he's on the hill

loves the snow

i see his silhouette
as he has a fine time

living in a rich
imaginary world

conquering a frozen peak
or making snow fort

when he sees my
shape in the window

he figures i'm
saying hello & waves

i wave back
when i'm really worried

might happen to him

as if life was a terrible
series of events

because it is not
i know this in my heart

snowy night is
a sparking wonder world

full of magic
that conquers all care

even from this
worrisome mind


Bass Lake
mind does not wander
scenery in a globe of snow

the consciousness free

we count flakes
until satisfied

this snow was always here
will be forever


Bass Lake

a dream of dreams do you have

a dream of dreams do you have
don't trade it in for anything less
or cheapen it with just or no

if it is a good one
you'll be sorely tested
then eventually changed

you'll become
both subject and object
you will be the dream aware

and as that dream realized
you'll be able to see the hope
of other dreamers

you'll realize they can see
who think they cannot see

you'll understand
those unknowing do know

then be like a light to them
even cry a tear or two
which be like

a stairway to heaven


Snowy Day


snow has no memory
it falls swiftly
and is

the night has no regrets

glittering snowflakes
from so high up
billow and fly

dance and then land

a warm room
a fire and a book
the radio murmuring

chapter ended

a beautiful night


Bass Lake

Sunday, November 13, 2016

a poem in a paper boat
is not different than anything else

but suffice to say
you had everything else

then was smashed

the most beloved thing
i could ever give

a poem in a paper boat


i have no refuge here
in this temporary
sweet affair

not in my heart
nor even in you

we're the same this way
no place to call home
no certainty

only in letting go
into bright emptiness
do i know

there isn't even any time
or any unfinished business

there is no separation
or sense of being apart

but still i want refuge
in this temporary
sweet affair

in your heart
in you


the heart travels far
which is lovely

nice to have it be free

if it travels too far
into memory

this can be sad

it be trained
ironed or discouraged

even sadder


my soul is great for its emptiness
before anything was created
from a beginningless beginning
not for how many stuffed armchairs
my ass sat in

my soul is known by its serenity
bright calm and clear
from a time without knowing or mind
not for my special personality
and wit

my soul cannot be organized at all
it was never unknowable
any move otherwise is a distraction
when i recognize this
no fear

no sorrow


Saturday, November 12, 2016

crossing a field of flowers
or cutting wood just to be different
believing you are in the sound of god
building a house in the desert

the closets are big
they walk on the floor heavily
imagine living here with tall ceilings
and polite neighbors

memory comes and goes
do you remember the music
crossing the fence or making kindling
a night sky with one billion stars

don't know where we end up
for some time we can see with no body
feel with no thinking and hold with no hands
with perfect clarity as never before

but even this does not last
one eternity slips from another


higher and higher you fly
with no going down
back at last home


For Leonard Cohen

be happy on any day
for yourself from yourself

the best gift ever had
you've accepted from you

a person who might not be
the tallest or the strongest
the cleverest or cruel

rather the best for now
wrought from faith and hope

work and promise
loss and gain

happiness and beauty
on this day



Saturday, November 05, 2016

yellow and black

stand in line for two hours
early voting

then outside
i encounter a splendid tree

bright yellow maple leaves
a black trunk

so perfect
lamentation does not exist

i take off
my hat and just look and look

what a thing to see

yellow and black


November 5th
Maple Grove

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

any task you took
was a success
failure or not

in being lost
you were staking
a claim on found

not knowing
having insight

giving up
meant you'd be

it isn't because
you are valiant
faithful or a fool

it isn't you in
denial or a zealot
or just a tool

an inner royal
nature i suppose

can be happy
in any clothes


and think

all those
funny things
that are not

the things
that were sad
but not sad

all the good
that was not

and bad
that wasn't bad

bear along

cross fields

around the
corner or bend

on and on

is whatever
you need


Sunday, October 23, 2016

smoldering fall
they burn leaves

more trees
go blood red
or wild gold

the wind
will come

in one blow
knock 10000
leaves down

kids dive
play in them

dads rake
mow the lawn

burning fall
for some

small gate

winter is a cure

a plot a grave
bright white

like the house

where you
would be


Bass Lake

i can't remember anything
other than what i habitually think

i mention myself to myself

sometimes as if meeting for the first time
after some kind of hilarious accident

far from home in a foreign land


in the child's drawing of a reindeer
the animal has a round face like a full moon

antlers arise on the edge of head
like trees
or sacred thoughts

it raises a hand
in benediction

and says 'hi'


Love is letting go. Love is not being anywhere. Love is holding on. Love is being here now.

Death is dying today. Death is is living forever. Death is dying tomorrow. Death is never dying.

The trees have lost all their leaves. The trees bring verdant leaves. Trees and leaves are one. Magnificent spare trees, sky.


 Bass Lake

Sunday, September 25, 2016

It has no use.

Zen is in whatever it is.

On a voyage, it is a boat in the boat.

If you are sitting in a room, it is the room in the room.

Illusion of self, in ghost of mind.


Bass Lake
Maple Grove

Saturday, September 24, 2016

i come

from landless hope
no purchase

we sailed
landed cleared

deep woods

when any friend
shows up

there is
a celebration

Sunday, September 18, 2016

I am sleeping.

No, I am not sleeping.

I am dreaming.

No, I am not dreaming.


Sept 2016

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

nothing ends
or starts

no ending because
there was no beginning

only now hands
trees leaves eyes looking

is the wind old
or the sunshine over everything

thoughts say

but then they
start telling me

when things start
or end

i am alive
i don't know what happens next

i am free
to feel about this any way i want


Bass Lake

Sunday, September 04, 2016

the rain is coming
it will fall hard tonight
you'll keep hearing it
each time you turn over
and try not to listen

drops fall and they are orbs
they collect high up
by first freezing then falling
in near darkness
mirroring city lights below

angles are the only witness
so high up and silent and watchful

tonight they are watching
looking down seeing everything
they never sleep the whole night
when it rains and the water
falls on you


Out in the Fields

Sunday, August 28, 2016

gradually hear them having sex in the room next door
the walls are thick and only a very distant rhythmic thumping
a cycle that speeds up sounding so far away
you have to be aware of it first and then at length you realize
there is a good screw going on getting better n better
while trying to take a fucking nap

then slip away dream of oceans of tides currents
diving deep under water where the kelp sways
in columns woven with schools of fish
bubble rising bobbing swaying
waking up a silent 4 o'clock in the afternoon
next door very quiet


i read the ancient poet's writing
beyond any i hope to make

i am looking out a window
seeing the thunderstorm soon will be here
like past writers

we shared a window and a sill
specks of water
and a view

drapes rise fall
then blow into the room
as the thunder and wind arrives


Maple Grove

dream construction
sculptures of yesterday today tomorrow

workbench first cleared
then assemblage built like a mobile

thoughts and feelings
hanging from threads of recollection

every fact or facet
turning in relation to the others

4th dimensional
inside a 4th dimensional stream

when i wake up
i become aware of my own life

a model of thoughts
like the airy thing i make in dreams

i can craft the day
into any turning gliding path i want

i want to tun to jump to explain
o hateful explanations or explaining

like the woman in the church
who corrected the portrait of christ

stroke on stroke
into a monstrous joke

word by word
i turn the truth into a baboon

vanity and lack of skill

i see places i belong
like in a wood sitting on a dunghill

i could talk to any passers by
give them thoughtful useless advice

but it doesn't pay


Maple Grove

wishfully find me

in minnesota
standing by a lake
with a lutheran church
in the distance

is like saying

find me i'm by
a stoplight
on the corner of a road
in an unnamed town

but do remember me

a fall a winter
will make wonder
will mute
some other feeling

if you do recall me

i will have
thought of you too
never believing
you owed me anything

and isn't that nice

Sunday, August 21, 2016

a coursing river broad
with a piece of wood
floating to the falls
where all will keep going

the wood does not mind
nor does the river
only my eye and brain
has questions of

but the sky
such grand clouds
suppress my ability to think
i become like what i see
flowing flowing


At the First Bridge
st. anthony falls
pride of minneapolis

shown to visitors
near and far

blast of wind
off curtains of water

then above
the drop

a placid

of the first bridge

mississippi lingers
by banks of reeds

this city
tied to the river

defined by it
imagined in it

mind and fate

all in and of
the mississippi

the river
will last forever

is never the same
for one moment

from the water

st. anthony falls
pride of minneapolis



Tuesday, August 09, 2016

i can't stop dreaming of you
you show up every few months

this time wearing white
with a white satin on the sashes

i have never seen you wearing all white
but it looked good

i said hello with you sitting there
you were sitting on the floor happy

when i said hello i grabbed your hand
and i squeezed your fingers a few times

a bit harder and longer than was polite
because i miss you

when i see you in a dream
i feel like crying

it has been three years
since you passed away

i hope i never stop dreaming of you
because it feels real when i see you

i hope i will always see you sometimes
because it feels as real as me
typing this poem


for Tsedrup Tharchin

Friday, August 05, 2016

i need to wake up
but i can't wake up
but i must get up
in ensenada

a hot bed and a fly
that keeps landing

crawling on my leg
while inside i have
a physical chemical
so so so so so so so

the hotel room
twisted sheets

killing me with a fly
and a hot white room
in mexico hotel
with the staff waiting

last night was so fun
so much promise

i'd even cry
but everything hurts
so i go into a dream
that does not hurt
of giant colors

flying with an
in one hand and a bible
in the other

and i'm clean
and good

over all

of ensenada

Monday, August 01, 2016

i tap on my window
wipe frost off the pane of my own mind

bringing day to night
or night to day to the house in my head with slates for a roof

if you see my silhouette in the window
you'd mistake me for someone else

i'm outside just like you
waiting to get in

say in a field or a home
wouldn't that be nice

where you can take
off all your cares & read

or if words were like
a helping hand x 2

this poem like
a kind old lady

or a lost uncle
who has a million bucks

but why would you or
i want much

knowing what comes in
must go out

but wouldn't it be nice
to find aladdin's cave

to have a golden touch
or ice cream body

and give it away
all day for free

Sunday, July 31, 2016

sometimes in hurt or agony
the heart rises

zooms straight through
a dawning or

you might be able to see
from a view

that has never been yet
always will be

where loss
has not been invented

where separation
is impossible

then after the apex
come back

see all the true
little things

stirring here
peeping there

creatures and hearts
you can help

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

oh on his
i think

all the birds
in the world
are singing

all the

the wind a stirring
every orchard

every land
with green grasses
forests breasting

all for him
for his heart
for his eyes

with such love
i do not exaggerate

and we can all be
loved this way

knowing it
can be done



For David

Thursday, July 21, 2016

i see the full moon
in the early morning sky

even before
the sun has arisen

the moon is lucid
perfect there

when i see it
i had lost track
of where it was

i thought it was
in my pocket

or i had left it
behind on a trip

i'm so glad to see
the moon is the moon

marked marred but
completely free


bolsa chica 2016

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

i do not know where i am
each mid day is 1000 years long

this span we call a day
the start and end of it are the same darkness

each time
i begin aware of time running in

i end the day sensing time trailing out
like a tide

surrounded by people
doing the exact same thing

exactly at the same time
every single day

even the music is the same
songs play at the same time

why do they say one day
is separate from the other

how do they think they know
where they are

they place themselves some place

that place advancing somehow

i see no evidence of anything

i see the same thing each day
like echos from a hand that clapped

i do not know where i am


Monday, July 18, 2016

i prefer not knowing where i am in dreams
because clocks have not been invented there
nor does money have any importance or changes any outcomes
time demoted is secondary to memory and feeling
death has been banished entirely

depart to the place of dreams or stay
no one knows where they are asleep or awake
sleeping or awake
you experience an eternity each time


Saturday, July 16, 2016

does joy go father
than i can think

by being exaltation
yes it does

how does joy then
reside in me

this little being
such small aims

could be grace
or a solemn deal

the order is love
for love's sake

if done
springs faith

beyond hope
and fear



Friday, July 15, 2016

when i met you last time
you said you had made peace with god and buddha

amazing things had been revealed to you
and you would be happy to tell me more later if i wanted to know

i wonder about this months later
when i think i should call you and see how you are doing

i wonder if things are still so sweaty
so bright almost unbearably clear with a certain imperative

i wonder about this months later
when i think i should call you and see how you are doing

a black sweater
in downtown napa

fifty chinese tourists
also in black sweaters

a cowboy hat
and a shot of espresso

three bridges crossed
mildwinter day

a woman comes
her dog barking

barking barking
barking barking barking

barking at tourists
barking at cowboy hat

midwinter day
dog keeps barking

even as it crosses
three bridges in napa


December 2015

Thursday, July 14, 2016

lost some enthusiasm
when i saw how much suffering
i caused when i had enthusiasms

i imagined like being
on some rare boat down a gilded stream
adorned in bejeweled molecules

with dignity the role i could play

but after a rest and reappraisal
i saw the keenest new thing

i floored it

taking a swing at the moon
figuring to fix what breaks



i dream cats have taken over the world
with their politics

white longhairs with puffy tails
and smushed faces

i'm trying to escape them
they chase me in the dream

little bells tinkling
and no other sounds at all

when i turn to fight
i see them arranged in a stack

like a honeycomb or a grid
you park cars in

when i see this i know
who is running the show

i the dreamer
am in charge
brooding over
closed doors to rooms you hated

some so stuffed to the brim
with blame it is impossible to see in them

you sitting in the light
with a nice breeze and a checkered cloth

free as you'd care to be
in a place that can live as wherever you'd like


Wednesday, July 13, 2016

i hear some asshole

he is talking
through whistles

then they talk
in spanish

and i write
in english

but i keep wondering
how we communicate at all

i'm using
shapes and spaces

poems are like

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

your life isn't like TV
so try not to watch it
like a show
or be asking yourself
how do i fit in this scene

nobody fits into anything
we aren't home or away


Day after my Birthday

i had a great dream last night
i can't remember a single thing about it

much like a previous life
every mark feature and thought

it all gets washed away like chalk
off  the eternal sidewalk

at my own twilight i have to stop playing
and go inside for bed

then up appearing
bright and early the next dawn

just as exciting and fun and fresh
as it was with the previous me

Sunday, July 10, 2016

a question
that in his death

the body dropped
away of limited sight

has he knowledge
revealed to him

does he know
the movement of fate

has he knowledge
of the future

or of other mysteries
that baffle us

or is revelation
possible irregardless

even as far as
indifferent to solid or not

as lightening
potential appears

out of empty space
yet in space

life or death

or earth


For Pat Payne
1928 - 2016

Thursday, July 07, 2016

i had a dream
the apartment was in order

it was bright
i did not ruin the laundry

you liked the salad

it is nice to talk
as is we were friends

or a good idea

today is like an era
you read in a book

after a time
of reconstruction

surrender or war

i would be embarrassed
if my neighbors or co-workers could see

but here are my hand signals
my pursed lips my cocked head in askance

here is my hat
a sunny boat a glass of amrita or cream

or the hotel room
graciously i stayed at and got it on in


turning from the burning
pyramid of khufu

this ravaged by the avarice
of robbers ancient

mount shaped as the cosmic base
beheld by armies and tyrants

stone ruin hardly pitched at all
by love filth birth or death

cameras now turning
to a golf course

a green shadow
to remember by

it has an overwhelmingly
positive 5 star rating

but with a tough lie
on the 10th hole

rivers of time moving

a necropolis
will gently seed there

where you
will be buried

new cameras turning

turning from the burning
pyramid of khufu


right before i wake up
we argue in the dream
 as in real life

and as in waking day
the argument is silly petty
 even vindictive

but time is not tied to anything
in worlds of make-believe
 or dreams

in both experiences i see i am
like a doorway open
 or closed

seeing this now
after so many years
to blame
 what a shame

Monday, July 04, 2016

i sit and watch the waves
and think about the robots on the internet
who write me and say they are adorable

it is july 4th and the surfers
are just getting some good waves
after the ocean was so flat

an oil derrick by catalina island
salutes burning off some natural gas
on the end of a long boom

i prefer each fictitious contact
to be as unreal as it seems

another example
of a reflection wrapped in a false plea

of a reflection
wrapped in a bit of appeal if you see it

in any case how serious
can i keep my private thoughts
to my vanity inner patriot or clown


July 4
Sunset Beach

Saturday, July 02, 2016

like you i listen to the same songs
the same song unendingly
even the same time of day

making all others listen too
it might be peggy lee
or simon & garfunkle

we're on the couch
with a horde of newspapers
it here it comes

just like remembering
the same event at the reunion
wedding or office

the dropping the same tired old pun
with the familiar worn out

like you i do the same thing
but why does it have to be so
because i wouldn't ever be like you

i swore i wouldn't traveled crossed states and
took on relationships jobs cities to prove otherwise

but here i am sometimes actually looking forwards
to three pm and hey jude or the boxer
after we have read the irish sport pages

Friday, July 01, 2016

here develop the deformities
the marks of
of middle age

on my face or my neck
my eyes or hair
my torso and legs

hated by some youth or
younger set just
by being alive
scored scratched

an old cueball on
what should be a pristine
playway of style
poise clever lifestyle

it isn't sufficient to say
fuck you this way
nor should it be
grin and bear it

i see the humor in and also
some of the sadness

my turn now
yours will be later

all along i bet
my green is greener than yours
my hopes higher
my dreams dreamier


Bodega bay

Thursday, June 30, 2016

i see that narcissists are like animals
with no comfort of an animal

nor with any generosity like an animal
nor with any regal bearing of an animal
nor with any industry of an animal

but with a vulgar display
and a hatred like a dying creature
sickened with disease


fog recedes the sky racing blue

where does the wind
come from my son asks

or where does it go

i tell him of hot rising air
and transparent domes

high pressure that soars

cold air from the sea
will speed past us for miles
to the orchards of sebastopol

from there swirl up

over the apples and grapes
and all the redwood trees
and all the pioneer burying grounds

it will know everything

the rocks and fields
solitary farms and hideouts
even lost pirate treasure

my son nods and we agree

thus strange magic associated
from whatever shimmers in the distance
and stray birds so knowledgeable


Bodega Bay

if i could move fortune with my will
i would bully it constantly

do you feel the prerogative

when i see you pretending
smiling happy not to be yourself

i see me too dancing prattling
yet incapable of hiding what i think

to be seen and to be pitied or hated
how horrible and exhilarating

do you feel the prerogative

go walking walking walking
as if you will escape yourself

your cunning grip your secret lies
hid by a river or buried on a mountain

locked up in africa or smothered

or known over all things
like a billion scattering of stars

do you feel the prerogative


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

on the converted green belt
where trolleys used to run

they pick up tiny dog turds
in biodegradable bags

the grass is neatly clipped
each blade of a limitless number

like thoughts that come
and vanish in a relaxed mind

both could meander on
seeming forever

only interrupted by a curb
or a street


neat brown seaside house
in a smart row of them

but this one has
a window

that is not centered

it is to the left
and no doctor can fix it

palm trees are long
swaying over green benches

a hush that says you

the sky is gray
but later the sun

will get through

waking men and women
of industry and promotion

gentle shiny cars
will nose out of garages

streets where

random thoughts
drive gentle shiny cars


Southern California
The day after the Summer Solstice

Thursday, June 09, 2016

some are epic surfers
others fearless mountain climbers

you have a talent
for getting the last word in

these last words
so ridiculous

like the click
of an old cap gun

with no caps
a stuck spring


Wednesday, June 08, 2016

i dream
i was flakes of snow

i wake up
i see i am flakes of snow

thank god


Q: Where is the cloud?
A: It is either here, or I don't know.

where was it in a dream

where was it in a dream
in 1972 or by the fireworks over the cement wall
of pets long gone and finals passed
of cities that change before my eyes
i had it right here
a whole life searching for it though forests of memories

waking up hearing the machine shop

nothing to be found
nothing ever lost


Tuesday, May 24, 2016

i have a dream
i am a folded newspaper

i wake up
i see i am a folded newspaper

thank god


i saw the moon high and three stars
so piercing and beautiful

i wanted to give my every hope and idea
and have them carry these

starting that solitary dusk with wind
and from then on forward

to a place where the ocean didn't matter
and neither did the mood

to a country up there where people
never miss one another


if i could stay in the logic of dreams
flying over a big bed like world
where the ground is soft and the colors splendid

no fall from grace there no twisted fate
only water that runs uphill and people who never die

visiting orchards always cool and sunny
blossoms spanish steps and ever clasped hands

the world ending there is no cause for alarm
because the next scene is forming and it knows
nothing old or news not heard of before

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

a face floats away
ladders of different colors appear

things so innocently dreamed
are later true as a cold hearth

senses do arithmetic
spoken nonsense takes up the shock

in the abyss i dreamed
not of revenge but of a green garden

where everyone past present and future
belonged and are welcome


Monday, May 16, 2016

i have a dream
i am a wooden toy

i wake up
i see i am a wooden toy

thank god


Q: Do you know anything at all?
A: It depends on what you think you think.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

i have a dream
i am a flying banana

i wake up and i find
i am a flying banana

thank god

Monday, April 25, 2016

if the poem is true
then it must not be clear

it will be strange

like a spider on a plate
or a skull and a rose

because sweet words
or symmetry unavoidably lead

to illusions

of happy outcomes
you and i have been the author
have been the source

simply because we asked for nothing
in return and gave fully with
happiness to see it given

others linger on the threshold
just outside of the circle of love
feel their empty hearts

in such keen poverty
step towards and not away
you will be caught up

there nothing i can do
and everything i can do

it makes as much sense
as if something could be

like a poem dancing
in space makes sense

we all are interlinked
and separateness is a fib

the disservice i do for you
and you for me

if i save me i redeem you
printed in the same space

if you will grab these lines
like a rope to ascend

you'll meet others like you
headed up

Friday, April 08, 2016

Falling Up the Stairs at Elm Street

i fell up the stairs
at elm street

into a tiny room
atop the garage

slanted wood
like a tent

the whole house

bob laughed
how do you?

what falls up

only thinking

or a kind of force
of will

or youth flinging
into age

or is it me
still falling up

a different set of
stairs now


Saturday, March 26, 2016

there is the kind of prayers
that meet no answer and bear
no results but still the prayer
says them with whatever unhappy
motivation later exhausted
by the futile type of action
of saying empty prayers

going in and out of focus
when you are seen it is in maps
owls rooftops and cinder beehives
i don't know what i am typing
i don't know what i mean
but it must go and it goes
the only honest writing i do


Friday, March 25, 2016

there is nothing i can do
other than saying no to being angry
i'm in the barrel

a selfish man says he is selfish
not meaning it and making it sound
like realization

the only person conned is the liar
truly ripped off is the stealer
lost forever is the egotist

so when in doubt
add some compassion
look at intentions

you can't be a villain
all the time

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

penumbral lunar eclipse
i have been 6 years on the path

following the secret thread
found in all faiths and systems

incidental awareness of nowness
in the most curious of places

in the traffic light or scrap of paper
or lost doll on the side of the road

that is me lost happy
smiling but not needing help

3.23.10 / 3.23.16

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

I dreamed I achieved enlightenment last night, it occurred quite suddenly
I was very happy, if not a bit surprised.

Awakening, I am here still,

the fact I am not enlightened is not bothersome, I knew I was dreaming.

The electric candle is on,

illuminating the hear center of my Buddha thanka.

What a remarkable dream, and may it happen as soon as possible

if it will benefit you, dear reader. Or me.

May we all have dreams like this, to remind us that anything is possible

and just around the corner if you wish it.

Sunday, March 06, 2016

it was a clean strong wind
fresh off the end of a storm

ocean ragged foam
waves never ending torn

motion light joy air
fury action activity birds

as far as the eye could see
up and down the strand

might and light fleck
glints of silver and gold

barely a footprint remained
from hours before

stragglers and sleepers
all home in bed

the ocean blows storm end
mightier than any horn

every molecule in a body
racing as the eyes scan

a clean strong wind
fresh off the end of a storm

Friday, February 26, 2016

prayers for lifting
whatever load
that never existed

god must be
the most patient
being of all

the fact
that i can't
imagine god

means god
does exist

all around
in maths

in stars
in sunsets
and dawns

and marks

a guiding
hand or a
light of love

if i dare
to ask i get
and i know

what was not given
was not asked for
thus rendered


Thursday, February 25, 2016

some people write
because it is one thing
of very few things
you have the illusion
of control over

but can you choose
choose what to write
or is the muse beating
a brain like a drum
boom boom boom

i've set in motion
things i cannot control
or i have no idea
how i influence them

still i consider
what i might say or do
or think to have these
people places or things

especially people
you cannot persuade
very much to go or do
anything at all

but why even assume
a position to persuade

because even the attitude
i might have a suggestion
is arrogance or pride
how dreadful

why can't i sit
and be content with
the sun this morning
and clip my pace

abandon all ideas
because pick up put down
over and over again
is just expressing selfishness

abandon the inventor
when i thought
i started out so happy
easy and pure

i've set in motion
things i cannot control

in this see my attitude
see my continued
sad worship of self

i keep things in motion
i set going nothing
other than my own
selfish ends

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

i have an image
of a buddha
with an automatic light

when the light
comes on
before dawn

i say a prayer
for all of us
i send a prayer to you

i send you
my highest aspirations
of happiness

automatic buddha light
reminding me
of something that comes
totally naturally for me

wishing you safety
wishing you peace
of mind

naturally i desire
contentment joy
and happiness
for you

may it lead us
through the many
mysteries that
need no solution

may you always
find love and ways
to love always

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

she wrote of the exhausting
even doomed work of poets in cafes
or serious writers being beaten to pieces
one letter one vowel at a time
at some point knowing too much
too much nerves to have nerve
to take at literature or lines or stanzas

here my pencil is dull
my pen is running out of ink
there are not enough pages
even then when i feel it is the end

i also feel like laughing

who makes it as far as a donkey
like me

in poverty i see
a wonderful star

over rooftops

it is perfect
no one else has it

it says write
my heart leaps

the pure white literary gods
in their mansions

are asleep


to Rosemary Tonks

Monday, February 22, 2016

last night i remember
my teacher in my dreams
blessing me quickly and getting away
so i don't remember and spoil it

every time i see him i cry


For Tsedrup Tharchin
10th lineage holder of the Repkong Ngakpas

Chötrul Düchen

Saturday, February 20, 2016

to take an expansive view
on delight

where it crosses all boundaries
covers everything

gives courage without hope

understanding to stay a course
and go on

new birds are seen over
new shores

where you came from before
you barely remember

Thursday, February 18, 2016

i read holy books
as if they are just easy reading tattered novels

it is better that way
because why ruin a good holy book with thinking

every river i cross
in my dreams does not get me wet in the least

i have crossed
missions of rivers in my dreams for holy books


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

i recite the 'heart of transcendent knowledge'
on the beach watching the surf come in

i remember the entire sutra
it took me three years to commit to memory

i do this for all sentient beings
and to short circuit my mind

i do this to rewire my power
convert the factory of a self to make no-self

i will keep repeating the sutra
until the bearings of my mind come apart

because there is no replacing you
on the beach watching the surf come in

accepting fear or fury
i become like a thief
i see hell beings love too
even angles are crazy

letting go of my will
staying in this moment
the fires go out and wings
cease beating non stop

a feeling arises
unimpeded of who or how
intricate details now seen
as little shiny toys

i don't know you
even though we met
we rarely get to know anyone
better to be safe

in this protection
real misery develops
unchecked by detection
goes on and on

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

waking up
from my illusions

the wall is
dazzling white

i will paint
a flower

or a bird
on a roof

finances fail
job gets difficult
people split
perfect really

lots to work on
it all being fresh
and stark as a slap
in the face

not a single
where i am

Thursday, February 11, 2016

like finding your self
all over again seeing a starry sky
not thinking how someone else might be
enchanted or happy too

anything set aside truly
has no bearing on your mind
anymore than when you noticed the wind
and how it moved a drape

i don't want to forget
but i will and i am starting to now
not being reminded on the hour or day
consciousness smudges

the crisp recollections
start to dog ear and fade
a blessing for me who forgets i suppose
that is the way for people like me

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

when i open the door
i am devoid of curiosity or wonder
holding no reverence to the dawn i walk into
but then i see venus

i am amazed by it
i look all about me and every shape and thing
compels and reminds my heart is
cradled in soft light

i let go
as it goes

reading a zen story
putting rocks in my pockets

i remember
to be funny to myself

they painted
the wall next door

it is dazzling

Sunday, February 07, 2016

a magic physicist said
there are possibly innumerable universes
each one happening at the same time
in parallel

i see someone far above
shuffling them and laying out a new spread
each new day and i can mentally
belong to any of them

dukkha does not mean just 'suffering'
it means i wanted the full moon three weeks ago
and everything spread below it in the night
with me and you

dukkha does not mean just 'suffering'
it means i thought of kissing you and i experience
two realities -- in one i did kiss you
and in one i am here

we study dukkha
i suffer from it

the story i create
out my thoughts

you had a part in it
and so did i

it was coming into
focus and beautiful

event changes
mind changes now

my ego loses
the tread of sense

i suffer from
dukkha my own opinions

my secret pride
curbed in the corner

just me and my pride
looking at each other

so a new story starts

we keep studying

i can laugh about it

how you
are not here

how i grab at
and how i deny
i grab

if i feel
i might make any
new pattern

of letting go
i have hope

Friday, February 05, 2016

you can't have it
because of your desire

it isn't here
because you can't see it

even relating
to it erases it

you can't even
preserve a cobweb
or dust

so get up an go
get down the path

other meadows
other sunrises

one must travel
broadly to have
a wide mind

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

like having a conversation alone
to a wall about companionship or love

or being at a filling station empty
in the middle of the night with no money

it is just one of those things
so you ride it out because it can't stay

every moment was made unforgettable
by this counting brain but now tired

looking out a window at the trees
with no thought as night falls


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

from disaster to disaster
is all we are

some happy accidents and
others dread

scatters every moment in

and the pieces look like

i don't feel bad
never worry about me
it was just the tilt of my face
i wasn't caught pensive

or with a frown

to be self absorbed like that
is unforgivable and selfish
i never feel that way
no worries at all

look at us as light

impermeable and transitory
flickering a bit and then
fading away water
into water

Monday, January 04, 2016

i think my
illusions are real

not like
windmills that i mock

the farce
is i am the farce

believing you
are the reason it is so


Saturday, January 02, 2016

Poem - i pick up shells

i pick up shells
universal symbols of hope

swirls round themselves
round another predictably

with a certain symmetry
they encounter themselves

over and over
in casualness and serenity

seeing this
in my hand i know

people see each other
even if i don't recognize you

even if the viewer is selfish

i will always see
something of you here

pick up a black
shell a nero i call it

on hand i surrender
to the mystery

that solves itself
through surrender


Jan 2 2015
Sunset Beach