October 2, 2023

  Pluck a string on a harp  and let the note ring.     Already, you have a  memory of that note  and an imagination  of the next.    But you were only one  with the song in the  moment of pluck.    It is the same with love  and pain, with what might  have been and what  might be.     A Question to Walk With: In conversation with a friend or loved one, discuss your own struggle to stay in... Read more

September 25, 2023

  On this ordinary day, he woke with a terrible sense that something was missing. He dressed and sipped his coffee, but couldn’t shake the stir in his stomach. How could he find it if he didn’t even know what was missing? As he drove to work, he looked for it everywhere: in the birds on the wires, in the steady blink of every red light, in the steps of others in the parking lot. Just what was missing? At... Read more

September 18, 2023

   Since we first saw a bison on the prehistoric plain and it seemed to stare back at us, we have turned everything into us. With the curiosity of a child, we humanize everything—making the dog pout when we’re sad, making the bird sing when we’re happy, making the cloud lazy when we feel lost—all as a way in, as a way to feel a small ion of life’s force in everything we meet, as a way to experience the... Read more

September 11, 2023

  The drop of a glass brings us running  but we have to climb to see the view.     In this, the vow to love: to be there  when we break and to never stop  climbing.    And to enter the vastness, side by  side, is like walking through a  forest at dawn.    And listening to each other squawk,  again and again, is to stand firm  before the waterfall of trouble.    Day in and out, we share the... Read more

September 4, 2023

When your mask cracks,  you can repair it or pull  it apart and feel how you  were born.    When the story you’ve  relied on rips, you can stitch  it back together or let it all  unravel and ask quietly and  fervently, “Who am I now?”    And when your worldview  shows its flaw, you can  criticize everyone not like  you or pull all thought back  to the beginning and start  Anew.    Everything in nature covers  itself, only to... Read more

August 28, 2023

  I invite you to practice intimacy. You may think, does he mean “practice making love?” Yes, but not with your body. I invite you to practice making love with the way you listen. How? Locate the center of your listening, which will be in the softest part of your heart. Go there and open the center of your listening like a window, so that whatever you listen to can enter you and touch you. For to practice intimacy is... Read more

August 21, 2023

  If you drop a plate, or in   frustration, throw it against   a wall—Well, you get the idea.    Speed releases violence.    Or you could use it every day  and wash it and dry it and care   for it through the long years of   intimacy   until one day its bond might  crack of its own sweet weight.    And you might take the piece  that looks like a small mountain  and sand its edges   and carry it... Read more

August 14, 2023

After a lifetime of teaching, I’ve come to believe that you can’t change anyone. So, what am I doing in the many circles I convene all over the world? Well, I’ve come to see that being a teacher means serving as a greenhouse: providing light and warmth to the living things before us so they can grow in the various ways they are meant to grow.  If I am invested in changing you, that assumes I know what you should... Read more

August 7, 2023

  You’ve both been gone for eight   years and I am turning seventy. I still   miss what we never had. Even when you   were here, I had become my own mother,   my own father. It took some time but I   can remember a beautiful moment in   the eye of the storm that was our life.   It was on a summer night in our small   backyard around a fire as the peepers   grew loud and we all stopped arguing   for a... Read more

July 31, 2023

Little things fall away  as big things become more clear.    I can no longer open jars  or carry two grocery bags at once.    But I can perch like an eagle   on the edge of the vastness  in any given moment.    I now walk into the kitchen  and forget what I was after.    But I can recite Basho’s instruction  to Kikakou in 1689 and join  their conversation.    I now stop near the top of the hill ... Read more

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