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In death's dream kingdom
           These do not appear:


They're handing out maroon balloons
And saying they are free
But grasping children grip them fast
And the monks amidst them disagree
Dispassionately, but en masse
While they liberate the children
With obliterating oms.

A nearby Byron expiates
And mildly reiterates
The soporific broken ode
He bellows over holy oms
To the smitten women who approach
That "a rose is a rose is a rose is a rose"
Dispensing with disinterest
Crimson bliss amidst the women
Who ignore the sinful image he bestows.

He hands them out like red balloons
To grasping girls all afternoon
Imploring them to trust their nose
Insisting they are free
And so continues to propose
To the smitten women in the street
That "a rose is a rose is a rose is a rose"
As if the word could smell as sweet
As the perennials he grows.

And in the corner – Romeo
Who greenly mourning understands
The worth of poison in his hands
Imagining a life of night
Where roses wither without light
And only stars through windows break
Through all the countless nights of fate
and every breath's an endless wake...

Meanwhile Byron's distant yells
Prevail over the choral swell
And plant a seed in grasping ears:
Salvation can be engineered!
Which Romeo soon understands
As kissing death, he takes her hand
Thoughts germinating into schemes
If a rose is a rose is a rose is a rose
...then a dream is a dream is a dream.


A griffin, a hippogriff, and a wyvern
Admitting me and
Gripping crimson
Dripping strings
So none of them will fly away.

Inside, Cain is killing Abel  
(How few! yet how they creep)
killing Abel
(Through my fingers to the deep)
killing Abel
(While I weep — while I weep!)
killing Abel.
(O God! Can I not grasp)
It is the first story:
(Them with a tighter clasp?)
A samsara of carnage and drama.

Somewhere above
On a city street
Desire's handing out balloons
He clips their thorns
And trims them neat
He says they're free
And just as sweet
As the women he impugnes
He belies his guidance on repeat:
That love is the light is the sun is the moon.

A widower laments and moves the world
That has such people in it:
A snake, a guard, a god, a dog
A wife by no other name
A faltering of faith, a peek
A pillar of salt, a severed head
Adrift on a river

I'd transcend five hundred miles
And I'd transcend five hundred more
Just to be the man who transcends trials
Sprawled out on your floor

(Thy drugs are quick.)
Searching for a souvenir
To prove to you our world was here

Isaac, bound, blank and free
Bleating, looking for meaning
(All that we see or seem)
In his father's violent eye,
And finding it.
(Thus with a kiss I die.)
Abraham swings his knife.
A son is a sin is a ram is a rose.

A man pushes the sun up a large hill
Every day, and then it rolls down again
And then an eagle eats his liver.
(I am the resurrection and the life.)
One must imagine Prometheus happy
The alternative is dark

The moon, by any other name, would—
But do not swear by the moon!
For she changes constantly
(Then said Jesus unto them plainly:
Lazarus is dead.)

Everything changes
But nothing is truly lost.

(at times
the fact of her absence
will hit you like a blow to the chest
and you will weep.
but this will happen less and less
as time goes on.
she is dead.
you are alive.
so live.

A man pushes the sun up a large hill
A day is a year is a life is a death.

One must imagine Orpheus happy.


In dreams, the sun resumes her loving glow
I'm reunited with my silhouette
I glue myself with soap to my shadow
And find myself beside my Juliet

No longer a balloon without a hand
I'm rooted to the earth where she grips me
With purpose guiding us through life's demands
I push my boulders uphill happily

I build a world with Juliet my wife
Where roses are all roses and smell sweet
We live a loving happy magic life
Together til our journey is complete.

[Enter, at the other end of the churchyard,
FRIAR LAURENCE, with a lantern, crow, and *****.

In union Eve and Adam are redeemed,
Not in a rose but in a living dream.
Can a rose be just a rose?
Ubuntu says that a person cannot be just a person.
Romeo grieves for the light of his sun, Juliet,
and chooses to live a life with her in a dream
as the poison kills him.
Joseph Miller Nov 2022
The mind ...
a wild garden
where healthy
and unhealthy thoughts
pop up out of nowhere
Discard the weeds
Gather the fruit
and harvest the rewards
of a beautiful mind!
Homunculus Feb 2022
Breathing in, I dwell
deeply in this moment
Breathing out, I know,
it is the perfect moment

Breathing in, I see
it is an only moment
Breathing out, a moment
that's truly one of a kind

For appearances may
delude one into thinking
"This is nothing new
it has all happened before"

But the discrete events of THIS "now"
have never happened before
in precisely the same way
and they never will again

and though a moment may
be filled with pain or anger or despair
Just like the moment itself
these will also disappear

So too, a moment may
be filled with rapture, bliss, and joy
but as with the moment again
these will also disappear

Breathing in with this in mind
to what is there to cling?
Breathing out with this in mind
from what am I repelled?

Breathing in with this awareness,
I see each moment is a miracle
Breathing out with this awareness
a smile sweeps across the face

Breathing in, I'm here
Breathing out, I'm now
Breathing in I don't desire
Breathing out I'm free
For our accomplished teacher who has shed his mortal coil. The man who taught us how to embody peace, compassion, love, respect, and joy. Namo Thầy, namo!
Kagey Sage Nov 2021
Learn to write again
learn to type right
first time in 3 decades of life

I want to write closer to when I think
speed time, to slow it
make it feel like I do more
like I was in my teens or early twenties
****, these days 3 go by and it feels like one

I count my blessings to build confidence
Life grows more cruel but
I might win if I act like already won
Chaos magick, nay we do not speak of it

You forgot to pretend
to suspend quests for rationality
No longer moved by a book or film
We conditioned to be unconditioned
only to realize we ought to been wistfully in the herd
the whole time  
We're the Bodhisattvas forestalling enlightenment
to get drunk with the butchers
after decades of sober high ground
We're the over-analyzers
lamenting our anachronisms in self-assuring
new philosophies
Either fully embrace one or drop out of being smart at all
the only tolerable choice to start to enjoy life again
No, no it's a false dichotomy
I want to be the eternal well-wisher
no matter the decadent displays

The shared dream of a soon to be future
We scavenge and defend
through pockmarked streets
make shelters amid crumbling concrete
We forgot how to imagine a secure society
Measured expectations and social safety nets
they took it all away along with our balanced serotonin
I used to get all jazzed up over a library book
but now the images promise us much more bliss
right around the corner

But it never soothes
never comes close  
We cannot buy the contentment you claimed to offer
so we'll get it in collapse
We'll be sniped, starved, and deranged
but the thought of that life
makes us whisper excitedly to ourselves
"finally something has happened to me."

I, the eternal well-wisher
will wag no more fingers at preachers of death
Neither will I become them nor pity them
Ellis Oct 2021
I am from incense
From water and candles
I am from the three prostrations
needed to enter the baai san (prayer room).
(cold, smooth, watchful tapestries)
I am from the pecan shells, the tree whose nuts
and leaves left small hills of muddy layers

I'm from ginger to contacts
From Ly to Tran
I'm from the headstrong
and the never-wrong
From mou jung! (useless)
and hou gaawi! (how obedient)
I'm from Nama Amituofo with Cha Lua
and Taking Refuge in the Gurus,
and Sangha

I’m from Sugar Land and Bellaire,
2% milk and Pork Sung sandwiches.
From Dad forcing my brother to stare at green
to fight our genetic astigmatism
to Mom making us chant mantras
with rosary beads on the way to school

In the neighborhood pool,
I pushed away floating junebugs
I am those moments—
Chalk on the cul-de-sac
Using George Ella Lyon's poem of the same name, this is her poem but as it pertains to me. Credit goes to her for the beautiful framework she's provided from many students practicing poetry.
Dresden Sep 2021
Your smile is a fond memory
Though I remember it faintly
I care about your happiness
Sending warm regards
and thoughtfulness
May you be happy and have peace of mind
May your happiness flourish
and your heart feel kind
May you appreciate your feelings of joy
and simply remember
Your peace is a choice
Still **** at writing, but a meditation practice encouraged me to write this one out. Although it takes a lot of practice, I am beginning to feel joy, not only for those I love, but for those I have had bad history with as well.
Kenshō Jul 2021
There was a man who had been abandoned at an early age and left to be cared by a monk at a monastery.

In his early years of adult hood he was so depressed he decided he would climb a mountainous rock and from it, he would jump.

He would die, and the pain would be over.

As he was eyeing his rock and seeing there was no way, he sat defeated.

And then his eyes caught glance of a monkey, effortlessly climbing the rock, all the way up. And all the way back down.

He knew he could mimick that climbing style and make his way to the top as well.

Slowly he climbed, tracing every movement the monkey had made, perfect.

AS he reached the top, he cried from the pain of the physical.. and the emotional..

At that moment, that was a roar

A huge roar of cheering.

From below the people were cheering and saying "He is a world class rock climber!"

They thought he had decided to climb it for sport, his skill seemed to display.

Confused with emotion, pain and elation, he bowed and safely returned to the ground.

Where after his first climb on that precipitous rock, he decided to persue rock climbing from then on..
Juliana Jul 2021
I opened the gifts one by one,
knowing that the softness I felt
under the antique Santa Claus paper
was yet another bundle of fabric,
more clothes to add
to my ever-expansive wardrobe.

One by one, the patterns were revealed to me:
some plain black cotton,
a Paris print with a sparkly pink tower,
paper cutouts the size of my favorite dolls,
and at last, a sewing machine.

I remember a roomless memory,
my mother and I hovered over the machine,
the internet failing to teach us
how to maneuver the thread.

“We’ll try again later,” she said.

Now, I open the drawer under my bed,
remove a dust-covered box,
running my fingers along the top of it.
I remove the as-new machine,
my failed future.
I walk to my computer, switch taps
from a Buddhism study guide
to an empty Google Docs.

I wonder if I was a seamstress in a past life.
Did I watch my family create the cave paintings
while I sat in the corner, hide on my lap
with a splinter of bone in my hand,
feeling nothing but bliss?

Did I live in the Edwardian era,
tailoring a perfect three-piece suit,
a walking skirt, my daughter’s chemise?

Did I ever pass my grandmother
in a secondhand store,
with my goal of finding a perfect neckline,
my favorite sleeves, a plaid pattern.

Did I find them among the stained and unloved,
did I make them into something beautiful?

Was this not a flashback, but a foreshadow?
Was this a hint at my next life?
Will I do the same with my daughter,
passing down the cotton and glittered tower,
hugging with triumph when the machine roars to life?

Will I be there at her first fashion show?

What if there is no past or future.
What if my soul is me, unchanging, stable.
What if I’m a butterfly,
every passing second another cocoon?

For I am a tree,
and these memories
are my branches.

My left arm holds the present,
the current reality. I fail to sew
even a button, but my dreams
reside content.

With my right arm,
I hold another present,
equally as real.

In this world, I made my doll a dress,
a bedspread with the leftover fabric.
In this world, I am not a poet,
and I don’t often dream.
In this world, my floor is my stage,
this fabric is my home.
In this world, I know not of other realities.
In this world, I live buried in my ignorant bliss.
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