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  1. TopTop #1441
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    My Grandmother Washes Her Feet in the Sink of the Bathroom at Sears


    My grandmother puts her feet in the sink
    of the bathroom at Sears
    to wash them in the ritual washing for prayer,
    wudu,
    because she has to pray in the store or miss
    the mandatory prayer time for Muslims
    She does it with great poise, balancing
    herself with one plump matronly arm
    against the automated hot-air hand dryer,
    after having removed her support knee-highs
    and laid them aside, folded in thirds,
    and given me her purse and her packages to hold
    so she can accomplish this august ritual
    and get back to the ritual of shopping for housewares


    Respectable Sears matrons shake their heads and frown
    as they notice what my grandmother is doing,
    an affront to American porcelain,
    a contamination of American Standards
    by something foreign and unhygienic
    requiring civic action and possible use of disinfectant spray
    They fluster about and flutter their hands and I can see
    a clash of civilizations brewing in the Sears bathroom


    My grandmother, though she speaks no English,
    catches their meaning and her look in the mirror says,
    I have washed my feet over Iznik tile in Istanbul
    with water from the world's ancient irrigation systems
    I have washed my feet in the bathhouses of Damascus
    over painted bowls imported from China
    among the best families of Aleppo
    And if you Americans knew anything
    about civilization and cleanliness,
    you'd make wider washbins, anyway
    My grandmother knows one culture—the right one,


    as do these matrons of the Middle West. For them,
    my grandmother might as well have been squatting
    in the mud over a rusty tin in vaguely tropical squalor,
    Mexican or Middle Eastern, it doesn't matter which,
    when she lifts her well-groomed foot and puts it over the edge.
    "You can't do that," one of the women protests,
    turning to me, "Tell her she can't do that."
    "We wash our feet five times a day,"
    my grandmother declares hotly in Arabic.
    "My feet are cleaner than their sink.
    Worried about their sink, are they? I
    should worry about my feet!"
    My grandmother nudges me, "Go on, tell them."


    Standing between the door and the mirror, I can see
    at multiple angles, my grandmother and the other shoppers,
    all of them decent and goodhearted women, diligent
    in cleanliness, grooming, and decorum
    Even now my grandmother, not to be rushed,
    is delicately drying her pumps with tissues from her purse
    For my grandmother always wears well-turned pumps
    that match her purse, I think in case someone
    from one of the best families of Aleppo
    should run into her—here, in front of the Kenmore display


    I smile at the midwestern women
    as if my grandmother has just said something lovely about them
    and shrug at my grandmother as if they
    had just apologized through me
    No one is fooled, but I


    hold the door open for everyone
    and we all emerge on the sales floor
    and lose ourselves in the great common ground
    of housewares on markdown.


    - Mohja Kahf
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  3. TopTop #1442
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Advice to Myself

    Leave the dishes. Let the celery rot in the bottom drawer of the refrigerator
    and an earthen scum harden on the kitchen floor.
    Leave the black crumbs in the bottom of the toaster.
    Throw the cracked bowl out and don't patch the cup.
    Don't patch anything. Don't mend. Buy safety pins.
    Don't even sew on a button.
    Let the wind have its way, then the earth
    that invades as dust and then the dead
    foaming up in gray rolls underneath the couch.
    Talk to them. Tell them they are welcome.
    Don't keep all the pieces of the puzzles
    or the doll's tiny shoes in pairs, don't worry
    who uses whose toothbrush or if anything
    matches, at all.
    Except one word to another. Or a thought.
    Pursue the authentic*; decide first
    what is authentic,
    then go after it with all your heart.
    Your heart, that place
    you don't even think of cleaning out.
    That closet stuffed with savage mementos.
    Don't sort the paper clips from screws from saved baby teeth
    or worry if we're all eating cereal for dinner
    again. Don't answer the telephone, ever,
    or weep over anything at all that breaks.
    Pink molds will grow within those sealed cartons
    in the refrigerator. Accept new forms of life
    and talk to the dead
    who drift in through the screened windows, who collect
    patiently on the tops of food jars and books.
    Recycle the mail, don't read it, don't read anything
    except what destroys
    the insulation between yourself and your experience
    or what pulls down or what strikes at or what shatters
    this ruse you call necessity.
    - Louise Erdrich
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  5. TopTop #1443
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Man Watching




    I can tell by the way the trees beat, after
    so many dull days, on my worried windowpanes
    that a storm is coming,
    and I hear the far-off fields say things
    I can't bear without a friend,
    I can't love without a sister.


    The storm, the shifter of shapes, drives on
    across the woods and across time,
    and the world looks as if it had no age:
    the landscape, like a line in the psalm book,
    is seriousness and weight and eternity.


    What we choose to fight is so tiny!
    What fights with us is so great!
    If only we would let ourselves be dominated
    as things do by some immense storm,
    we would become strong too, and not need names.


    When we win it's with small things,
    and the triumph itself makes us small.
    What is extraordinary and eternal
    does not want to be bent by us.
    I mean the Angel who appeared
    to the wrestlers of the Old Testament:
    when the wrestlers' sinews
    grew long like metal strings,
    he felt them under his fingers
    like chords of deep music.


    Whoever was beaten by this Angel
    (who often simply declined the fight)
    went away proud and strengthened
    and great from that harsh hand,
    that kneaded him as if to change his shape.
    Winning does not tempt that man.
    This is how he grows: by being defeated, decisively,
    by constantly greater beings.


    - Rainer Maria Rilke
    (Translation by Robert Bly
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  7. TopTop #1444
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Penelope's Loom


    My specialty is waiting.
    I sat here at my loom
    winding and unwinding
    my cloth
    by day and by night
    for endless years
    while the grapes ripened
    and fell.


    Meanwhile the suitors
    pressed my:
    some wanted
    my possessions,
    some my love,
    all demanded that I constantly
    attend.


    Sometimes I got distracted,
    engaged in a bit
    of dalliance
    went too far
    once or twice
    but regretted it
    later.


    How could I remember
    what had shaped my life
    so long ago,
    even before I arrived?
    It was all now like a shadow
    coming into focus now and again,
    then disappearing into the
    moonlight once more.


    The name of what I waited for
    was the voyager,
    the other part of my spirit/self
    gone astray for so long.
    The voyager traveled many lands,
    had many adventures
    to distract,
    finally returned
    and claimed me,
    and I at last was united with
    what I had longed for
    for so long,
    forgotten fragment,
    journey's end.


    - Dorothy Walters
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  9. TopTop #1445

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Thanks, Larry. This has long been one of my favorite poems!

    Quote Larry Robinson wrote: View Post
    The Man Watching

    I can tell by the way the trees beat, after
    so many dull days, on my worried windowpanes
    that a storm is coming,
    and I hear the far-off fields say things
    I can't bear without a friend,
    I can't love without a sister.

    ...
    Last edited by Barry; 12-03-2012 at 07:38 PM.
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  10. TopTop #1446
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    What I Learned from Bill P.

    Speaking in tongues,
    I just want to say
    Everything is A okay
    and I do mean everything
    for all our troubles, real and imagined
    are less than the one heart
    and thinner than our blood's share of it
    Even better,
    the troubles we ourselves create
    are brittle, flimsy enough to shatter
    in a round hug, or in laughter
    flashed from Mind's delight
    like a comet in the dark
    - Cynthia Poten
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  12. TopTop #1447
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Penelope

    Twenty years gone,
    and you walk through the door
    as if nothing has changed,
    least of all, you.

    Home at last, you say,
    and you stride past me
    to take up your bow
    left twenty years unstrung.
    Welcome home, I say,
    and scrub floors splattered
    with the blood and stench
    from your surprise party.

    All looks well, you say,
    ignoring olive trees,
    barren and broken by storms
    and long years of neglect.
    We can start over, I say,
    but you flinch at my touch,
    muttering nonsense about
    magic spells and pigs.

    I have stories to tell, you say,
    baring your body’s map of scars,
    each ridge of proud flesh
    a tale of its own.

    I miss the absence of you, I say.
    I miss the company of my loom
    and the routine of day after day
    without you.

    - Patrice Warrender
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  13. TopTop #1448
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Black Stone On A White Stone


    I will die in Paris with a rainstorm,
    on a day I already remember,
    I will die in Paris—and I don't shy away—
    perhaps on a Thursday, as today is, in autumn.


    It will be Thursday, because today, Thursday, as I prose
    these lines, I've put on my humeri in a bad mood,
    and, today like never before, I've turned back,
    with all of my road, to see myself alone.


    César Vallejo has died; they kept hitting him,
    everyone, even though he does nothing to them,
    they gave it to him hard with a club and hard


    also with a rope; witnesses are
    the Thursday days and the humerus bones,
    the solitude, the rain, the roads. . .






    - César Vallejo
    (Translated by Rebecca Seiferle)
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  14. TopTop #1449
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Cheerios


    One bright morning in a restaurant in Chicago
    as I waited for my eggs and toast,
    I opened the Tribune only to discover
    that I was the same age as Cheerios.


    Indeed, I was a few months older than Cheerios
    for today, the newspaper announced,
    was the seventieth birthday of Cheerios
    whereas mine had occurred earlier in the year.


    Already I could hear them whispering
    behind my stooped and threadbare back,
    Why that dude’s older than Cheerios
    the way they used to say


    Why that’s as old as the hills,
    only the hills are much older than Cheerios
    or any American breakfast cereal,
    and more noble and enduring are the hills,


    I surmised as a bar of sunlight illuminated my orange juice.


    - Billy Collins
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  16. TopTop #1450
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Hymn to the Nameless One
    Now as the year swings down,
    and the darkness encloses
    even the smallest bird,
    the largest animal,
    and we too enter the hour
    when everything is falling once more
    into the twilight
    of not knowing,
    what we ask is that
    you be with us,
    not as a pillar of fire
    nor a blaze across
    the heavens,
    but like water
    at rest in a pitcher
    which catches the morning light
    and is filled
    with its own radiance.
    - Dorothy Walters
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  17. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  18. TopTop #1451
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Forgotten Dialect of the Heart


    How astonishing it is that language can almost mean,
    and frightening that it does not quite. Love, we say,
    God, we say, Rome and Michiko, we write, and the words
    get it wrong. We say bread and it means according
    to which nation. French has no word for home,
    and we have no word for strict pleasure. A people
    in northern India is dying out because their ancient
    tongue has no words for endearment. I dream of lost
    vocabularies that might express some of what
    we no longer can. Maybe the Etruscan texts would
    finally explain why the couples on their tombs
    are smiling. And maybe not. When the thousands
    of mysterious Sumerian tablets were translated,
    they seemed to be business records. But what if they
    are poems or psalms? My joy is the same as twelve
    Ethiopian goats standing silent in the morning light.
    O Lord, thou art slabs of salt and ingots of copper,
    as grand as ripe barley lithe under the wind's labor.
    Her breasts are six white oxen loaded with bolts
    of long-fibered Egyptian cotton. My love is a hundred
    pitchers of honey. Shiploads of thuya are what
    my body wants to say to your body. Giraffes are this
    desire in the dark. Perhaps the spiral Minoan script
    is not a language but a map. What we feel most has
    no name but amber, archers, cinnamon, horses and birds.


    - Jack Gilbert
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  20. TopTop #1452
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Ancient History


    Adam, a brown old vulture in the rain,
    Shivered below his wind-whipped olive-trees;
    Huddling sharp chin on scarred and scraggy knees,
    He moaned and mumbled to his darkening brain;
    ‘He was the grandest of them all—was Cain!
    ‘A lion laired in the hills, that none could tire;
    ‘Swift as a stag; a stallion of the plain,
    ‘Hungry and fierce with deeds of huge desire.’


    Grimly he thought of Abel, soft and fair—
    A lover with disaster in his face,
    And scarlet blossom twisted in bright hair.
    ‘Afraid to fight; was murder more disgrace? ...
    ‘God always hated Cain’ ... He bowed his head—
    The gaunt wild man whose lovely sons were dead.


    - Siegfried Sassoon
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  21. TopTop #1453
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    CLIMBING THE CHAGRIN RIVER


    We enter
    the green river,
    heron harbor,
    mud-basin lined
    with snagheaps, where turtles
    sun themselves--we push
    through the falling
    silky weight
    striped warm and cold
    bounding down
    through the black flanks
    of wet rocks--we wade
    under hemlock
    and white pine--climb
    stone steps into
    the timeless castles
    of emerald eddies,
    swirls, channels
    cold as ice tumbling
    out of a white flow--
    sheer sheets
    flying off rocks,
    frivolous and lustrous,
    skirting the secret pools--
    cradles
    full of the yellow hair
    of last year’s leaves
    where grizzled fish
    hang halfway down,
    like tarnished swords,
    while around them
    fingerlings sparkle
    and descend,
    nails of light
    in the loose
    racing waters.




    - Mary Oliver
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  22. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  23. TopTop #1454
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Here’s a homely little example concerning ‘regret’ without wishing it otherwise


    Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that you’re involved in the break-up, and
    Let’s say that you determine that driving off into the ricelands due West,
    Even though the sun is below the Coast Range, is a good idea.
    And so you do, and it is, and you’re soon strolling about on an irrigation road,
    Alone except for hundreds of water fowl and their distant calls that do indeed
    Stretch to the color that the sky is, which in this bless-my-soul clear day, now
    Hums an avocado hue, swear to god, and (of course) this
    Reflects in the flooded fields, in places the sky and water light nearly touching, equally bright.
    And the moon is up and the birds are on wing.
    So let’s say this is happening and you Realize that the person you must
    Leave first showed you that we All
    Live in one vast heartland of the World. Our native home.


    Then, the feeling that you might be having right then,
    Might be an example of the regret I was trying to point at earlier.
    From science instruction I know it is always good to provide a concrete example.


    - Chris Gaffney
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  24. Gratitude expressed by 3 members:

  25. TopTop #1455

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    .. concerning ‘ennui without wishing it otherwise

    I was sitting here at my desk
    having a mini meltdown and
    cursing the powers that be
    mumbling to my desk, to the walls, to the lights,
    to my sandwich and the brown paper bag in which it is packed
    cringing at the sound of my co-worker cracking her gum

    all the while reading stupid emails from stupid people ...

    thanks for breaking through the haze
    thanks for an email that is not stupid and mostly
    thanks for this poem ... it is spot-on.
    from my spiritual practice I know it is always good to express gratitude.

    gardenmaniac aka Ruth Steiger

    Quote Larry Robinson wrote: View Post
    Here’s a homely little example concerning ‘regret’ without wishing it otherwise


    Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that you’re involved in the break-up, and
    Let’s say that you determine that driving off into the ricelands due West,
    Even though the sun is below the Coast Range, is a good idea.
    And so you do, and it is, and you’re soon strolling about on an irrigation road,
    Alone except for hundreds of water fowl and their distant calls that do indeed
    Stretch to the color that the sky is, which in this bless-my-soul clear day, now
    Hums an avocado hue, swear to god, and (of course) this
    Reflects in the flooded fields, in places the sky and water light nearly touching, equally bright.
    And the moon is up and the birds are on wing.
    So let’s say this is happening and you Realize that the person you must
    Leave first showed you that we All
    Live in one vast heartland of the World. Our native home.


    Then, the feeling that you might be having right then,
    Might be an example of the regret I was trying to point at earlier.
    From science instruction I know it is always good to provide a concrete example.


    - Chris Gaffney
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  26. TopTop #1456
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    christian desert realism
    for Donna Seamone

    Friends, let us not deceive ourselves about
    the place where we find ourselves.
    Earth
    --the pearl in a blue sky--
    is where everyone gets injured trying to survive.
    It’s hard to make this world more gentle.

    Let’s be honest that in the dazzling beauty of day
    too much of life is eat-or-be-eaten,
    too much blood is spilled competing for fresh water.
    Let us observe that sex is controlled by dominance and shame,
    Let us proclaim that the starvation of the poor is not their choice.
    Let us watch every year as the wars continue.

    May we notice that in our nation
    the words of Jesus have been twisted by hypocrites,
    so that pagans are seen as enemies, and the military grows fat,
    while the rich believe
    we have only ourselves to thank for our Kingdoms in Heaven.


    There is no heaven outside this planet.
    Jesus said god is here on earth
    whenever love takes place.
    He said god is for the losers and the infected,
    people like ourselves.

    Having a heart makes all the difference.
    It creates rare springtime blooms, pink
    and yellow, purple orange and white.

    Jesus didn’t claimed to be a Savior, only that
    an inner parent had unlocked the gates for him.
    He asked, what do you profit if you own millions, but
    lose your ability to feel for others?
    And then… he was murdered.

    Jesus was born in this desert and
    he was murdered in this desert.
    He did not ascend to the right hand of the father, but died instead
    with a cry of abandonment on his lips.
    If he rises from the dead, it is only in our hearts.

    Yet love is a spring that never dries completely!
    Or a weed with roots that are deep, deep.
    For love is always with us, only underground.

    Here we are, anyway.
    Stranded, we put our parched shoulders to the rock over the tomb
    without pretending we can roll it very far.
    Let us not be bitter every time our causes fail, for fail they will.
    Our leaven takes ten thousand years to rise.

    - Alan Acacia
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  27. TopTop #1457
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    For One Day


    For one day
    Give thanks to life
    Your life and the lives of others


    See the Big Picture
    And how it all fits together


    Forgive yourself & others
    Recognize we're all doing the best we can with what we got


    Be grateful
    Even for your troubles
    And the bitter medicine they bring


    Know that everyone you know
    And everyone you don't know
    Is a messy but necessary character in your tiny/Vast world


    For one day
    Awaken to the truth of Love


    - Guillermo Ortiz
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  28. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

  29. TopTop #1458
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Advice from La Llorona


    Each grief has its unique side.
    Choose the one that appeals to you.
    Go gently.
    Your body needs energy to repair the amputation.
    Humor phantom pain.


    Your brain cells are soaked with salt;
    connections fail unexpectedly and often.
    Ask for help.
    Accept help.


    Read your grief like the daily newspaper:
    headlines may have information you need.
    Scream. Drop-kick the garbage can across the street.


    Don’t feel guilty if you have a good time.
    Don’t act as if you haven’t been hit by a Mack Truck.
    Do things a little differently
    but don’t make a lot of changes.
    Revel in contradiction.


    Talk to the person who died.
    Give her a piece of your mind.


    Try to touch someone at least once a day.
    Approach grief with determination.
    Pretend the finish line doesn’t keep receding.
    Lean into the pain.
    You can’t outrun it.


    - Deborah A. Miranda
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  30. Gratitude expressed by 7 members:

  31. TopTop #1459
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Diameter of the Bomb
    The diameter of the bomb was thirty centimeters
    and the diameter of its effective range about seven meters,
    with four dead and eleven wounded.
    And around these, in a larger circle
    of pain and time, two hospitals are scattered
    and one graveyard. But the young woman
    who was buried in the city she came from,
    at a distance of more than a hundred kilometers,
    enlarges the circle considerably,
    and the solitary man mourning her death
    at the distant shores of a country far across the sea
    includes the entire world in the circle.
    And I won’t even mention the crying of orphans
    that reaches up to the throne of God and
    beyond, making
    a circle with no end and no God.


    - Yehuda Amichai
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  33. TopTop #1460
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Be Suspicious of Yourself


    Everything you do has a quality
    which comes back to you in some way.


    Every action takes a form in the invisible world,
    which may be different from how you thought


    it would appear. A crime is committed,
    and a gallows begins to be built. One does not


    look like the other, but they correspond.
    Accept the results of what you've done in anger,


    or for greed, or to elevate your ego. Don't blame
    fate! That dog lies in the kennel


    and will not respond to anyone's calling.
    Be suspicious of yourself! Inquire


    about your hidden motives. It takes courage
    to repent, and more courage to change.


    But realize this: just as dust grains shine
    in sunlight coming through this window,


    so there's a light of reality, within which ideas,
    hidden hypocrisies, and the qualities


    of every action become clear. All you've done
    and will do will be seen in the light of that sun.




    - Jellaludin Rumi
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  35. TopTop #1461
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Gilead

    It has seemed to me sometimes

    as though the Lord breathes on
    this poor gray ember of Creation

    and it turns to radiance-

    for a moment or a year or the span of a life.
    And then it sinks back into itself again,

    and to look at it no one would know
    it had anything to do with fire, or light.

    But the Lord is more constant and
    far more extravagant than my words
    seem to imply.

    Wherever you turn your eyes
    the world can shine like transfiguration.

    You don’t have to bring a thing to it
    except a little willingness to see.

    Only, who could have the courage to see it?


    - Marilynne Robinson
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  37. TopTop #1462
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Once and For All


    for Carolyn B.


    She sits, hands resting on the table,
    A cigarette, bobbing like a ballon
    In the grip of an excited child,
    On her thinning lips.


    "I get tired of starting over every day,"
    She tells us.
    Not that she's complaining,
    A simple statement we all understand.


    "Like sometimes I'd like it to be done
    Once and for all.
    Like I could eat breakfast today and never
    Have to do it again."


    - Rebecca del Rio
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  38. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  39. TopTop #1463
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    FALLEN LEAVES

    after Sandy Hook

    Red leaves are mounded in the cold.
    Crushed by the stilled flight of them
    we leave our bodies for the night sky.

    Inside our chests hobby horses rock,
    tiny pianos play brief, familiar tunes.
    In hand-knit wools, we sit beneath

    one star, then another, another … and on.
    We wait for the sun. Will it come through
    our heavy sighs? Will we be cured of

    this expanse — an angel apiece
    burning so far out of reach?
    - Katherine Hastings
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  40. TopTop #1464
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Toward the Winter Solstice

    Although the roof is just a story high,
    It dizzies me a little to look down.
    I lariat-twirl the cord of Christmas lights
    And cast it to the weeping birch’s crown;
    A dowel into which I’ve screwed a hook
    Enables me to reach, lift, drape, and twine
    The cord among the boughs so that the bulbs
    Will accent the tree’s elegant design.


    Friends, passing home from work or shopping, pause
    And call up commendations or critiques.
    I make adjustments. Though a potpourri
    Of Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Jews, and Sikhs,
    We all are conscious of the time of year;
    We all enjoy its colorful displays
    And keep some festival that mitigates
    The dwindling warmth and compass of the days.


    Some say that L.A. doesn’t suit the Yule,
    But UPS vans now like magi make
    Their present-laden rounds, while fallen leaves
    Are gaily resurrected in their wake;
    The desert lifts a full moon from the east
    And issues a dry Santa Ana breeze,
    And valets at chic restaurants will soon
    Be tending flocks of cars and SUVs.


    And as the neighborhoods sink into dusk
    The fan palms scattered all across town stand
    More calmly prominent, and this place seems
    A vast oasis in the Holy Land.
    This house might be a caravansary,
    The tree a kind of cordial fountainhead
    Of welcome, looped and decked with necklaces
    And ceintures of green, yellow, blue, and red.


    Some wonder if the star of Bethlehem
    Occurred when Jupiter and Saturn crossed;
    It’s comforting to look up from this roof
    And feel that, while all changes, nothing’s lost,
    To recollect that in antiquity
    The winter solstice fell in Capricorn
    And that, in the Orion Nebula,
    From swirling gas, new stars are being born.


    - Timothy Steele
    Last edited by Barry; 12-21-2012 at 05:03 PM.
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  41. Gratitude expressed by:

  42. TopTop #1465
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    You are not surprised at the force of the storm—
    you have seen it growing.
    The trees flee. Their flight
    sets the boulevards streaming. And you know:
    what they flee is what
    you move toward. All your senses
    sing, as you stand at the window.

    The weeks stood still in summer.
    The trees' blood rose. Now you feel
    it wants to sink back
    into the source of everything. You thought
    you could trust that power
    when you plucked the fruit:
    now it becomes a riddle again
    and you again a stranger.

    Summer was like your house: you knew
    where each thing stood.
    Now you must go out into your heart
    as onto a vast plain. Now
    the immense loneliness begins.

    The days go numb, the wind
    sucks the world from your senses like withered leaves.

    Through the empty branches the sky remains.
    It is what you have.
    Be earth now, and evensong.
    Be the ground lying under that sky.
    Be modest now, like a thing
    ripened until it is real,
    so that the One who began it all
    can feel you when he reaches for you.

    - Rainer Maria Rilke, Book of Hours, II 1
    (tr. Joanna Macy and Anita Barrows with a few tweaks by Kim Rosen)
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  43. Gratitude expressed by 3 members:

  44. TopTop #1466
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    A Christmas Carol


    Away in a manger
    or a crack house
    or under a bridge
    or in a bombed-out village
    or a refugee camp
    or in the mesquite shade close to the border wall
    some Mary is giving birth.


    Even as you read this
    a child is being born.


    What if one of these were the promised one,
    the beacon of hope,
    the seed of a new light
    in a dark time?


    What if they all were?
    What gifts would you bring
    if you were wise?


    - Larry Robinson
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  45. TopTop #1467
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Work of Christmas

    When the song of the angels is stilled,
    When the star in the sky is gone,
    When the Magi and elders are home,
    When the shepherds are back with their flock,

    The work of Christmas begins:
    To find the lost,
    To heal the broken,
    To feed the hungry,
    To release the prisoner,
    To rebuild the nations,
    To bring peace among all peoples,
    To make music in the heart.

    - Howard Thurman
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  46. Gratitude expressed by 6 members:

  47. TopTop #1468
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    All will come again into its strength:
    the fields undivided, the waters undammed,
    the trees towering and the walls built low.
    And in the valleys, people as strong and varied as the land.

    And no churches where God
    is imprisoned and lamented
    like a trapped and wounded animal.
    The houses welcoming all who knock
    and a sense of boundless offering
    in all relations, and in you and me.

    No yearning for an afterlife, no looking beyond,
    no belittling of death,
    but only longing for what belongs to us
    and serving earth, lest we remain unused.

    - Rainier Maria Rilke
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  48. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  49. TopTop #1469
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Great Matter

    Cooking, eating, sleeping,
    every deed of everyday life
    is nothing else than the Great Matter.
    Realize this!
    So we extend tender care
    with a worshipping heart
    even to such beings as beasts and birds--
    but not only to beasts,
    not only to birds,
    but to insects too.
    Even to grass, to one blade of grass,
    even to dust, to one speck of dust.
    Sometimes I bow to the dust....


    - Soen Nakagawa
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  50. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  51. TopTop #1470

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Thank you, Larry, for broadening my horizons
    with the words and the thoughts you have shared.
    As days grow longer and darkness wanes,
    I look forward each day to my dose.
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  52. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

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