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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 30.11.21

I see you walking

your dog. Your dog walks you, too.

When I say walk, I

mean wander under

the sky as I versify.

It’s just what happens.

My dog (my soul) counts

the steps we take, notes changes

in the light, sings with

the gulls out at sea,

turns us toward home. My dog

demands to be walked.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 29.11.12

As it gets colder

my walks get shorter, but feel

longer, more intense.

Winter condenses

time into crystals, each one

its own metaphor

for timelessness. Fall

combines spring and summer mo-

ments, never winter.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 27.11.21

I watch the TV

at the pub. The sound is off.

We all love football.

The light outside is

ripe. These fall days are smokey

with a long finish.

There are values and

values. I’ll go see an old

flame who lives alone.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 26.11.21

”The importance of prayer is to demonstrate one’s attentiveness to the status of its own finitude.” Takeshi Morisato, Faith and Reason in Continental and Japanese Philosophy, Bloomsbury, p. 172.

I may not be re-

ligious but there are times

prayer stops me cold.

Like the resonance

of Basho’s elsewhere cuckoo.

In the overcast,

the green fire of a mallard

from the dark water.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 25.11.21

”In order to use language as a musical medium we must also approach it as a physical medium, as sound.” Zwicky, The Experience of Meaning, 150.

Within earshot of

the pub I turn toward the

cove, the raucous sea-

gulls, glittering waves.

I close in on the silence

of fellow creatures.

A chorus of shrieks

in the impersonal glare

of winter sunlight.

Later I’ll stop by

and say hello to the girls

who sing in their prep.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 24.11.21

”Lyric thought achieves integrated speech only to the extent that words are bent to the shape of wordlessness.” Jan Zwicky, LYRIC PHILOSOPHY#137

Pre- Thanksgiving Day

walk to the cove—air, water

bursting with white gulls.

O The Great Swamp mass-

acre: kids, women, the old,

slayed by Puritans.

O air and water,

O Narragansett people,

the white gulls screaming.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 23.11.21

”The point here also has to do with thresholds between immanence and transcendence and whether an entirely “immanent frame” can be sustained.” Desmond, GODSENDS, 140

The shiny object

on the boat ramp where the geese

sat was a small fish.

It shone in the dull

winter sunshine. I said ”hi”

to the geese and left.

Sometimes all you get

from a walk to the cove in

the cold is the cold.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 22.11.21

The cacophany

of distant gulls, the slow bells

of Trinity on

the hill, horizon

of my way home. They blend in-

differently. Once

my pace evens, I

too am blended, gulls and bells,

the horizon home.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 21.11.21

”In a way, there is no soul. There is no body. There is only the passage between them, and the soul is the blushing body.” Desmond, Godsends (2021), 142.

A late start on a

Sunday after an extra

hour in my warm bed.

When I reached the bay

I sat on the bench under

the old pine and looked

and looked. I got cold

and looked some more, shivered, and

got cold and peaceful.

I found I’m blushing.

No doubt looking is meta-

phor for deep desire.

NEAR PROVIDENCE 20.11.21

The pub overflows—

TV football, Thanksgiving

cheer. I leave early.

I’m full of doubts. This

is my country too, awful

as it is. I reach

the other country.

Herringbone lights at full tide.

Two mute swans floating.

The silence broken

by those two calling. I’m dumbstruck,

but it saves the day.

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