Posts Tagged ‘perception’

A pearl day, smoke shaped.
A lick of mist this river’s voice.

Hills turn cloud, clouds become all.
A single dreaming moment
Explains everything.

More precious than breath
It lifts weightless, turns and dissolves,
Sky colours leaning out.

What was golden dulls to dust.
An aching tumble of sweet May,
A thorned white wave enthroned.

A season’s birth heavy laid,
A full descent, a grace,
An offered all, begun.

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violet turquoise indigo gold1

(Beinn Sguraval, Barra)

Mountain wearing a cloak of flowers.
Grey door.
See in new ways:
Relax, allow your sight.
Where your attention flows,
There is a doorway.
Veils of rain
Thousand primroses
Melt meanings,
Dissolve barriers.
Music is the ordering of silence.
See with your heart.
Nothing is hidden but in clear view.
You yourself are the key.

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What we refuse to see, we dream.
What we refuse to dream, grows strong.
The roots and stones we rest on, groan.
By day and night our laborious weight increases.
Mass and energy, the great fall, the future rise.
Reconstructed are our histories, our reasons.

It is the bones that remain.
It is the bones we clothe
With fragments of colour,
Rouge and tinsel.
They mock us who
Do not delight in story
(Failing to see they, too, live enfictioned).

The essentials of life are child-like.
Delightful is the minute and the hour of silence.
Sustaining is the simple breath, the still gaze.
Listen, not even the stars, not even they, shuffle nor stir:
The middle of the night coagulating cold.

No thing can be blamed for this,
No thing blessed.
No distinction, no judgement.
An infinite web of choosing there is,
An eternity of outcomes.
Each path, unsigned, is sought out,
No goal but a calling home.

We have lost elegance.
We have lost the subtle shades.
Our cochlear spirals numbed
In loud foolishness, indocrinated false memories.
Sleight of hand – the key always was and will be, distraction.
Watch the bright light, the movement of the shiny.
The doctrine of no ghosts, neither holy nor profane.

The bones.
It is the bones that shape us.
The bones of the ancestors,
The bones of the children,
The hidden, red-marrowed, singing bones
Inside us.
Mortice and tennon, ball, socket,
Vessel, rope, sinew, glistening cartilage.
The slide and pull of grace.
The dance of staying in one place,
( an interchange of coming and going, being and forgetting to be).

What stirs us,
(I mean to say),
Is the equation of balance.
Number clothed in colour,
Colour clothed in light,
Light clothed in philosophy,
A weighing and positioning of fulcra.
Forgetting that stillness
Is not absence
But presence.

Holographic ideogram,
Mala, a string of meaning,
Where things slip between names,
Where a blink sees more than.
Circumstantial, peripheral,
Ephemeral shall I be.
Beams and motes –
A matter of simple perspective.
The opposite must also be true to itself.

The grinding down of bones,
A fertilising dust.
Tears frozen and thawed,
The watering of life.
Turn out the light, dear,
The stars shall be enough.


There is little logic in the arts of Christmas, nor is there any one cultural imprint. It is a mish-mash of archetypes and long-loved mysterious imagery. Thus this wandering of thought and layering of idea that flowed from finger to page this morning…… Reaching and goodness and redemption though, must surely be worthy ideals to construct neural pathways around. Seasons greetings to all and all.

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Located during long overdue clearing out, this work from 1998, that I knew was lying around somewhere. Esoteric, but to those who chew.
Forbidden fruits,
says Miss Eve, ( missive),
forbidden by whom?
She says. Foolishness and Wisdom? To risk what for a world? To lose a world what would you not risk? Elastic minds dance. The rigidity of denied souls, the refusal to blur lines. Common sense, a weedkiller on the path to the orchard (where she waits, ready to offer more than everything). Nonsense, nonsense. Defining madness by your turgid, proscribing fears a little unwise, do you not think? Somnambulism, catatonia, walking backwards towards the abyss. Some things are too simple for words. Some words are too short, some too long. Orchestrate, sound values. Tongue shaped like a leaf. Leaf, a light-savouring tongue. Tuned. Resonance. Morphic. Shapely. What a nerve. ” I praise the many-functioned plants, Mothers of Mankind.”
The First and Last is a seed.
Mind, the compost.
Shimmer, cascade,
the arrows of light.
Our Lord is a tree.
Our Lady, an orchard,
a forest.
Our blanket is green.
Our air, our breath, a benison from roots…..


Salvia Vocabulary.

Words in air
The word is, was, is
The Way of Salt,
The Room of Life,
Our Lady of Origami,
Queen of Convolution.

Man eats plant,
Plant eats man.
Slain by a salad –
Seen, sane, slowed,
Honey-slurried, shifted,
Slid, shaped and stopped.

The word is: listen.
A steady wave of silence
Approaching the ear
From both sides. I do
Not, never, merely object
To subjective. What else
Is there? Me and my leaves:
A thousand shivering whispers,
Divine veins, snakes, circles, whisps,
Whispers: from behind the curtain
A prompt, a curtain-raiser, or
The diva Herself. A scurry
Of scivvies.

Human to humus, plant to
Planet, words to worms. Slapped
Sharp against that bitter green wall.
The fizz – utter excitation of electrons,
The physical forgets form, form turns
Flow, flow turns vast;
Vortex: ex thought, ex libris,
Ex calibre. The Way that can
Be named is not the true Way.

Awareness: a well. Whither
Whatever whispers? Upon
What input, impulse, can
Thought flap like a fish,
Beached, lipped?
Stranded upon silence,
Salvia space, zephyrs
Sough the room, see
Sound, seed significance.

So, She says: ” Either
Servants of the planet
Or Masters of nothing”.
No choice. Plant voice,
Rooted human. Who?
Who cares? Who cares?
Homo viridis.
Homo vegetalis.
Homo salviensis.
Plant people,
One and all.
People plants, percept of
Perfection, confection of
Creation. Extraction of
Ex-stasis; bodiless buddies;
Hand in leaf with Lady of Life.

The word is, was, is
Saviour and salve.
Words in air
I wouldn’t like to say.



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This, then, is the music.
My head: a rippling stream,
A passing breeze,
A rustle, a lifting
And a falling.

Notes that cascade and tumble
But hold still.
New green leaves, new shade;
Harmonic tides,
Distant waves pierced:
The gull’s wheeling turn;
A slow stuttering starlight;
A bloom of sun, a drift of moon.

Fingers rippling on water strings
A remembrance, an essence, a perfume,
A rise of incense.
The turning of a page,
The sound of honest paper.
A rhythm of gardening,
A stroke of brushes,
A slow file turning soft, bright silver,
An edge revealed.

Trembling cascade,
Inevitable shift
From melancholic
To elegaic,
A broken heart soothed
( but never mended).
The smell of rain.
The smell of summer.

A sequence moving along time,
Planned but reckless,
A bed, a couch, a cradle.
Always building to this matchlessness:
The revolving, wheeling heavens.
A path between dawn and dusk,
A road paved amongst the stars.

It is neither the truth
Nor the lie of words,
Neither the insistence
Nor the revealing of maps.
It is weaving the name of a soul,
A secret name known by all.
This music, a familiar mystery,
An itch, a longing, a homecoming
Just beyond that green hill.
Just beyond that hill.


There is that sort of dream wherein one listens to, or manages to play, the very essence of oneself, the most perfect delightful complete sounds, the most exquisite melody. Probably a compilation of the oldest, forgotten echoes from childhood, the phrases and rhythms that themselves formed the brain’s shape, how it moves within itself. Always fascinating, the way a composer or musician can be recognised by a phrasing, a pattern of intervals, a sequence of chords. As if they always return to those notes that name the shape of their own soul.

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My name is
‘far from home’

My name is
‘forgotten, lost,

I name myself
Under all the names
Others have bestowed.
I name myself the seed
The root, the star
Hid by cloud.

I name myself
‘moonlight on roofs’,
Hugged hollowness,
Footsteps echoing.

I name myself
‘mystery, scribble,
Mistaken meaning,
A long road alone.

I name myself
‘roaring voice,
Bitterness, waker’
Too polite to manifest
World’s joy in wrath.

I name myself
‘uncertainty principle,
Void, precipice’.
Carrying a carapace,
A studied, practiced armour.

I name myself
‘foolish mirror,
Cascading breath,
Contusion of thought,
A persistence of error,
Circuitous conclusion,
Stumbled silence.

I name myself
‘No one is alone,
Wedded to their shadow’
Given form, formed,
Framed, fragmented.
By their shade
shall ye know them.

I name myself
‘rapture, remote view,
Releaser, pinion,
Branch, web, slurry’.
A cascade of chivied cells
Unconcerned, nested.

I name myself
‘shattered, frozen,
Shard spinning,
Glint and gone.

Each name an edge,
An arrived at limit,
A turning away.

Each, a thin ledge
Gratefully clung to,
A place to leap from.

I name myself
‘not object, not subject.’
I name myself
‘vowel’ with no
Restraining consonant,
A howl,
No glottal stop.

The sound of morning.
The sound of evening.
I call myself


( the sketch is for a silver pendant i am designing: dragon dance. Sort of sums up flaming throught the void that these words also evoke, I think)

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Surely it cannot be sustained,
This comfort resting on the back of lies.

Etiolated, we stretch tall and wan,
Straining to leave behind every root, even.

Hungry for withered light,
This forced flicker of cloud vapours, this promise of better,
This regurgitated psychology.

Every home in each mausoleum city:
A crowded tomb where the living stumble mummified,
Salivating new updates.

All the small gods gone,
Growing potatoes and beans in hidden valleys, forgotten,
Resigned to wait.

Only the blustering bullies remain, the greedy,
Insistent on their protocols, their visions for growth.

A short experiment. Forced fruits. Temptation
Of full ripeness turning to ash, turning to dust.

Make way. Make way. We study the death of stars,
Anaesthetised, unaware of irony.

Remove from us our craft
And we shall all become beggars, lost, drowning sorrow
In rainbow-stained pools, slow and viscous folds.

They stretch tall and limp, loud, enabled.
Their magic: monotony and ennervation.
Their ropes, their chains: the promise for better times.

Inertia, the slow, wearing away, the blocking of roads,
The pinching, the slighting.

We retreat from day, back to our tombs.
Too tired, even, for our own dreams, we collapse into parody.

Etiolated, we stretch thin and will soon wither.

Somewhere near,
The small gods dig rocky soil and wait.

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We do not make our own reality, nor the reality of others, nor the dream of reality, nor the wish of reality. We glance off the Real as light off metal, as wind off ice. At best we taste an edge. Then enfold upon ourselves to fill the void. Pretty shards of sight woven to inhabit a world. Sonorous thoughts woven to withstand irrelevance. Needle-slight, this point of view.
A compass of stuttering,
an occassional brilliance,
a stroboscope,
a fabric of simultaneous equations.
Erasing one world, one instant gone, recreating one world. Shiva blinks, eternity ends. The Ladder of Being, the descent of doves to the chasms of fire. A riverbed of laughter tells me what is my nature. This not this. Now not now. Never, not never. The tune, that one extraordinary tune, the perfect sequence, secret to all things, sweet and haunted, is a candle in a still cavern of dream.
Sung and forgotten,
sung and forgotten,
each note sung and forgotten.
Memory is not the answer, but memory is a clue. Will it can it shall it free us?
One word held, a flower reached for, a line that becomes straight, a point between the pointless, a key, a way out or a way in. Chained, owned, here we belong. Nothing to do but build and destroy, forget, forget. The thirteen classes of beings, the ten thousand things, the aeons and elements stand aghast, amazed:
the song of this stream,
the rippling of the sight of it,
the rainbow surface, the dazzling light.
Best song of the singer of all, golden chains to our tongues. The oracle speaks clouds of nonsense, vapours and dust. It follows its own nature. Sun and moon. The fifth day it shall return. Look to the north, the wild birds dance, the sight shall become a sound. Everything will be accomplished.
Vapour trails,
name of one writ in water.
Forgetting is the clue.
Do not forget it. Never forget it.
Forged, iron, still,
now the thing that never was, is,
and now, not.
Capture this sound –
it becomes silence.
Hold on, hold on
and it will be lost forever.
To say all things simultaneously, one chord, bringing all edges together. Eleven or thirteen dimensions. Constant is the speed of stillness. Nothing illuminating nothing. It illuminates surfaces once it arrives without moving. Constant speed of light. All sound, a commentary on the nature of silence.
A river in heaven,
Heaven’s river,
Way of milk,
Road of stars.
Looking in, looking down, looking out.
Hunters and hunted on circular paths.
Vindicated, never meeting.
Untouched is the Way.
Untrod by any shoe.


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Two very different pieces inspired by crows. The graphics are with “Zen Brush”- a really nice app. Though with some limitations, it is elegant and great tactile fun. The kanji is (supposed to be) ” karasu”. – crow, that seems to be made up from the elements of ‘black’ and ‘bird’.
The first piece was written in Tokyo this May. The crows there are raucous with great thick beaks, always talking to each other. One would always wake up about four in the morning, before dawn, fly around a bit calling to the others. They would wake much later around six. Wherever you go there will be a crow flying, calling, perching, watching. A city made for crows.
The second piece I recovered from an old diary. It has the flavour of a spell, though I am not sure for what, other than the unique shining-eye, crow consciousness, piercing perception, non-judgemental being.


Tokyo crows:
Everywhere you look,
Perched, watching,
Diving between buildings.

Even when they are
Out of sight:
Their voices, calling

In the air
Over human world,
Crow world.

Samurai eyes,
Katana beaks.
Guardians of silence:
Keeping it safe
From human ears!


I am neither this nor that
Wingbeats black and wingbeats white.
I am neither this nor that
A sharp voice that cracks the mountains.
I am neither here nor there
Echoing in the valleys, in the forests.
I am neither one nor many
Encompassing power
Rising in the cold blue.
Sharp eye
Long eye
Sharp beak
Long beak
Strong claw
Long claw.
Mind and memory,
Past and future,
I am neither this nor that
Flying between worlds
Masterless, masterful
Obeying laws
Breaking complacency
Waking the dreaming
Between sunrise and sunset.



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