Cataract Haiku

I
thundering falls
sing a mind into trance —
timeless sound


II
nearing the falls,
the grand spectacle becomes
a fog wall


III
yamabushi
sit under the cascade —
nails unhammered


IV
seeking earth’s center,
the river drops as far as
land allows


V
a round boulder
sits at the precipice,
refusing to roll

POEM: An Exercise in Walking Blindly

I walked up to the window — eyes closed.

The explosions of irregular shapes settled into an even sheet of orange — a warm and comforting hue. It became more yellow as I continued to stand before that unseen sunny day.

When I turned my back on the window, light blues boiled up from a dark and even metallic blue — until the inside of my eyelids settled into shifting Rorschach mosaics of dark colors, mostly purple and black.

Walking blindly,

-every step is an adventure,

-every sound matters,

-there is no wandering mind.

I wonder how long my brain would take to rewire if I kept my eyes sealed shut.

I suspect a blind person can take a mundane walk, but there is nothing mundane in my walk. There’s no mind left to wander after one piece keeps me on balance, another piece takes note of other sensory input, and yet another bit positions my hands for maximum gentleness of collisions.

I have no yearning to be blind, but it does wake up something within one what one never knew lie dormant. And in those moments I experience life anew.

POEM: One Tree

In this land of tropical green,
there is one tree timed to north lands.
Its leaves turn red from deepest green,
and fall as if to season’s plans.

They fall not by mere ones or twos,
but in wild, fluttering masses.
Inside, it gives one the bronzy blues
to starkly feel the year’s passage.

To see sunny-side branches nude,
and know the numbered days still left
for ever-redder multitudes
who suffer time’s — and wind’s — great theft.

No land is so foreign to me
that I can’t see home in a tree.

POEM: Vanishing Time

It’s mid-month.
But how?
Where are all those days?

Once upon a time,
days were shoved neatly into rows —
like tiles in a perfect pattern…
weren’t they?

Now, the days are tossed rubble:
fragmented,
deformed,
or missing, altogether.

And I wonder whether I was awake through those disjointed days, or whether my mind was kicked into some kind of timeless void?

POEM: Hero’s Journey through Memory

I crossed into the long-lost land of my youthful mind,
seeking a boon — missed amid youthful buffoonery,
or lodged within the machinery.

But I tripped into so many pits —
Sections of memory had sloughed off and fell away,
leaving a dim and dashed detritus of moments lived.

The present is such a narrow band
between the chasms of past and future,
and I fear I’ll need some mad magic to get me home.

POEM: Marooned

wracked & shattered —
crawling ashore
sputtering & coughing —
clawing the sand

i roll like the detritus lapped by waves,
but more spastically —
not with the gentle surrender of a warped deck timber —
but like a thing struggling not to be pulled back in —
though lacking the strength to press up to hands-n-knees

a coconut thuds onto sand
&
satori

POEM: Temple Red

The walls were painted temple red.
This dream was just that kind of dream.
I saw no feeders nor the fed,
but my deep mind followed that stream
of color from décor to blood.
And seeing it not sacredly
saw red waters rising to flood
and paint the walls a shade deadly.

Fragile & Ephemeral Haiku

I
a breeze tousles branches
then, in stillness, red leaves
cascade downward


II
hawk and half-moon
in one blue, morning sky
then clouds come


III
pine tree tips
droop flaccidly over
the road


IV
the divine madman
sows havoc, showing neither
reason nor angst


V
too little water
kills the plant; too much water
kills the plant

POEM: A Leaf in the Light

i see a leaf amid leaves
the tree is covered in creepers
these leaves churn out power
— silently —
each leaf making miniscule food,
but there are so many —
and so many hours of daylight,
and they take no breaks
they sit in tight clusters
waving in wind
still in stillness
— but ceaselessly working —
until the day is done
&
darkness descends

and i can’t help but wonder whether they have leafy dreams, and — if so — what a tree’s dreams feel like?