An old man that I met in '92, told me "you should meditate in burial grounds." Then he added "In Tibet! Cemetaries in America are parks. In Tibet there are half decayed bodies or half-eaten bodies left from animals. In America, maybe meditate in airports." I meditate during root canal. "You, YOU have to be aware of dying. You know about death, everybody writes about death and the bardo, but dying is ANOTHER thing all together." He was very aware of my situation; "Success is false. You cannot be drugged by it. You will die, you will suffer in dying, this is inescapable. You think you can cheat death, but you cannot cheat dying." He died in 2013. My old man, my father, was a robust, post WWII guy. "Don't let the environment beat ya!" You recognize the past tense. He died twelve days ago. Dad was not into meditation. THINK, he would say, THINK! He taught me analysis, thinking, caring about family as the only way. In the end, he had dimentia. He had visions of women on the ceiling. Not romantic visions, confusing & mind twisting visions. He also saw some horror he never told me about. I saw it in his eyes. There are visions that creep within us. My old man, now gone, mouth agape, eyes open. This is my current haunt. How do you shake a ghost when you love him? You never escape the visage of your dead hero, the decay of his body, his catheter, his spindly legs. And you don't want to either. What else is left? He told me he wanted to go, but that was before his mind withered. Even that, he was aware of now and again. Once when I was twelve I dropped my jack-knife down a sewer drain.
It's an odd thing, to be handed a tote bag, as if one had contributed to the local public radio station; tote bags are "gifts" for contributing, but having the tote bag contain a wooden box containing a plastic bag containing the ashes of your father, is this all that there is? In the time of covid there is no ceremony, no casket, no family, only a tote bag and a wooden box.
eyes open, your gape mouth:: road kill possum on the way home
It never arose In my prefrontal cortex That the days after you Passed on, would be Filled with an amalgum Of salt-water And downloaded PDFs Printed so as to provide Data and attached Documents about your life Its end, and of course the Official John Handcocks. ~
Take fabric For instance, how we dye In a certain pattern So as to create a star-field And horizontal bars Of blood and soil To draw a swarm. Take flames, For instance, and apply Their tongues to whole cloth Which sets eyes wide And some inner harm Rises to a boil Into a shit-storm. ~
-- for Robert Tilley After the night rains The clouds meander the shoreline In the steady clatter of stones Dragged by the waves Through their own white noise As one does in one's own Way of being timeless Chattering on about the upcoming Storm which for you Never came. ~
Hot morning sneakered feet Carry me along as mind wanders Sweat in my chest hair Walking home from White Birch Cove Blacktop radiates mirage heat ripples, Rusted-out red pick-up speeds past Roadside thistle and clover Laze in the beat down sun ~
Fucking A. Fucking A. . Fucking A****** !
(i) How to hold and lift this Slim tapered glass mostly Filled, to my lips Sip and let flow Into mouth and throat pulsing Swallows while in the same set Of moments turning a page And starting the next (ii) That a pen, fetched From a drawer can be used To underscore words To think or consider The value and meaning Of which in this context So noted ~
rise as if from death did Christ sleep as the stone that blocked his tomb? dreamless body at dawn one enters the cave each motion a task to get through gazing at the wall of shadows ~
"The use of a preexisting word in a new context. The connotations that a word carries due to its historical meaning or meanings."