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NEAR PROVIDENCE 10/5/20

Sunday afternoon.

I give myself a pedi-

cure and take a walk.

Low tide. Sun on the

mudflats. The horizon bright

with the sound of geese.

As Zhuangzi says, this

is also a that. Nothing

compares with the Il-

lumination of

the Obvious. Haiku and

Zen go together.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/29/20

You again, old swan,

your feet in the mud under

the pier, you whiter

than the Autumn sun,

than the dying year. Tonight,

we drink Hibiki.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/27/20

Yet another day,

yet another cup of tea

as the traffic dies.

I turn on the lights

as I put away the things,

and in the quiet

feel the shock thinkers

talk about. It is stunning

that it is at all.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/26/20

Another holi-

day without you, another

walk to the cove. But

a Canadian

goose, also out for a walk,

also overdressed,

and out of its el-

ement, though when it stepped a-

side, I could go on.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/24/20

Too cold for a walk

really but the ducks paddled

away chatting —a

family outing.

Feet numb, ears freezing, I stood

there smelling the first

pie you baked for me

that summer in Providence.

You knew your apples.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/24/20

I look down the road.

The houses look smaller with-

out the pinks and greens

of their small gardens,

smaller and less well-cared for,

less significant.

The only beauty

left to observe on my walk

is the play of light.

It happens with each

step I take, as various

as love to the saints.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/22/20

Where fresh and salt mix,

rain in my face, wind in my

ears, I seek myself.

I didn’t come out

here to see it but to feel

what it feels—the swan.

In the dark chop, the

swan looks past its image to

what it knows below.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/21/20

Just another day

in the pandemic. We have

lost count of the dead.

We bring the children

to watch the swans in the cove.

So big and so white.

The children laugh to

see them stick their long necks in-

to the dark water.

We’re forbidden to

say goodbye to the dying

or to see them go.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 11/20/20

On the breakwater,

the winter sun at high noon,

the light strips things to

transparency: soul

reading the bright page of keen

attention, there is

a forgetting of

self, cold, my presence, there’s just

the flowing passage.