Sunday, December 4, 2011



Thursday, December 1, 2011


Sunday, November 20, 2011


Dariusz Klimczak (Poland) - Curioos


Old men ought to be explorers
here or there does not matter

we must be still and still moving
into another intensity
for a further union, a deeper communion
through the dark cold and the empty desolation,
the wave cry, the wind cry, the vast waters
of the petrel and the porpoise.

In my end is my beginning.

~ T. S. Eliot
excerpt from East Coker V
Four Quartets


Four Quartets


via whiskey river 
image via ELEMENOP



Saturday, November 19, 2011


If you want to become whole, let yourself be partial.

If you want to become straight, let yourself be crooked.

If you want to become full, let yourself be empty.

If you want to be reborn, let yourself die.

If you want to be given everything, give everything up.

~ Tao Te Ching


  Tao Te Ching


Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Deer


You never know.
The body of night opens
like a river, it drifts upward like white smoke,

like so many wrappings of mist.
And on the hillside two deer are walking along
just as though this wasn't

the owned, tilled earth of today
but the past.
I did not see them the next day, or the next,

but in my mind's eye -
there they are, in the long grass,
like two sisters.

This is the earnest work. Each of us is given
only so many mornings to do it -
to look around and love

the oily fur of our lives,
the hoof and the grass-stained muzzle.
Days I don't do this

I feel the terror of idleness,
like a red thirst.
Death isn't just an idea.

When we die the body breaks open
like a river;
the old body goes on, climbing the hill.

–Mary Oliver


“Here I am trying to live, or rather, I am trying to teach the death within me how to live.”
~Jean Cocteau


Here I am trying to live, or rather,
I am trying to teach the death within me how to live.

–Jean Cocteau


Wednesday, October 5, 2011




Friday, September 2, 2011

I Ask Percy How I Should Live My Life


Love, love, love, says Percy.

And hurry as fast as you can
along the shining beach, or the rubble, or the dust.
Then, go to sleep.
Give up your body heat, your beating heart.
Then, trust.

~ Mary Oliver


thank you, wait - what?


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Seeing For You


The leaves left at the tops of trees
sound like rain in the wind. November—
the sparrows play at being leaves,
the leaves at being birds.

I play at seeing for you
now that you play at being gone.

 ~ Linda Allardt


image via datura 


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Thursday, August 4, 2011

forget it


now, listen, when I die I don't want any crying, just get the
disposal under way, I've had a full some life, and
if anybody has had an edge, I've
had it, I've lived 7 or 8 lives in one, enough for
we are all, finally, the same, so no speeches, please,
unless you want to say he played the horses and was very
good at that.

you're next and I already know something you don't,


waiting for death
like a cat
that will jump on the

I am so very sorry for
my wife

she will see this
shake it once, then


Hank won't

it's not my death that
worries me, it's my wife
left with this
pile of

I want to
let her know
that all the nights
beside her
even the useless
were things
ever splendid

and the hard
I ever feared to
can now be

I love

~ Charles Bukowski


Friday, July 29, 2011



Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness,
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.

Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to mail letters and
purchase bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
it is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you every where
like a shadow or a friend.

–Naomi Shihab Nye


The Day My Son Died


The doctor came to tell us that he had died I thought it was just for that day, so I went to bed early and slept well.
But the next morning I heard them talking downstairs; apparently he had still died (even though the doctor wasn’t calling to tell us today).
So it’s gonna be a few days, I figured; we might as well have a funeral. We drove hundreds of miles in dozens of cars finding and losing the way ‘round and ‘round standing ‘round and ‘round, crying, listening, crying listening standing and standing around.
But when it was over he had still died so there was nothing to do but drive home. It took hours and then the refrigerator had broken down. We soon fixed it but he had still died.
And every night after that I slept as long as I could to give him a chance to not have died.
But in the morning they were always downstairs and when I asked if he had still died the answer was always, "Yes."
And so it went into a week and then it went into two weeks. Eventually it went into months.
And it kept going.
It wouldn’t stop.
It kept on having happened.
No matter what I did, it refused to not have happened.
Even if I wrote in my diary about it
Even if I wrote a poem about it
Even if I forgot about it,
IT didn’t forget about it.
Not for a second was it caught off guard.
It was as stubborn as the music of the spheres.
It just wouldn’t let bygones be bygones.
To this day it has happened.
It insists on having happened.
It will never tire of having happened.
Nothing will distract it from having happened.
It was more than one day. It was more than one week.
It was more than months. It was more than years.
And it knew it – ALL the time                 

~ Marion Cohen


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Roses, Later Summer


What happens
to the leaves after
they turn red and golden and fall
away? What happens
to the singing birds
when they can't sing
any longer? What happens
to their quick wings?

Do you think there is any
personal heaven
for any of us?
Do you think anyone,
the other side of that darkness,
will call to us, meaning us?

Beyond the trees
the foxes keep teaching their children
to live in the valley.
So they never seem to vanish, they are always there
in the blossom of light
that stands up every morning
in the dark sky.

And over one more set of hills,
along the sea,
the last roses have opened their factories of sweetness
and are giving it back to the world.

If I had another life
I would want to spend it all on some
unstinting happiness.

I would be a fox, or a tree
full of waving branches.
I wouldn't mind being a rose
in a field full of roses.

Fear has not yet occurred to them, nor ambition.
Reason they have not yet thought of.
Neither do they ask how long they must be roses, and then what.
Or any other foolish question.

~ Mary Oliver


image via life love yoga


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Intro to Yale Course on the nature of Death (Philosophy)


Metaphysics, values and the nature of death ...

 Many of these lectures are to be found in the sidebar here: