Geese honk
& I love grey sky
Cold water runs through snow
in the creek
& I love the sun

Something I never
I'd say
must qualify
test but

Aaron Tieger


No forms less
than activity.

Robert Creeley


Photo: Chris Laver


Rooting isn't just allowing our own energy to drain into the earth, but allowing everything to drain there through us. Like a siphon. Our magnanimity reaches out and brings everything around in and down. This is our function, partly, as compassionate beings – to earth – to bring peace. It requires a quiet, unassuming but ever present strength: to be the pillar upon which the world rests. As the energy and the experience passes through us it is cleansed and the world is relieved – tension is released. We are also cleansed and strengthened through the process: the heart expands and opens to accept and receive all around without the possibility of labeling or judging. Nothing is any better or worse. What is happening is happening and needs to happen and our function is to embrace it, bring it through and let it leave a whisper of an imprint – just enough to learn what needs to be learnt. Then the soles of the feet become the most active and charged parts of the body. They really sing.


When the mind's free,
The body's delicate.

Shakespeare, King Lear


Progress hinges on forgiveness.

This life cannot be lived
apart from what it must forgive.

Robert Creeley


O, that this too too solid flesh would melt
Thaw and resolve itself into a dew!

Shakespeare, Hamlet


Photo: Chris Laver


Teen Weaning

I was very young —
9th grade — when the drunk
on the El got off

where I did and said
to any one young
enough to listen —

Don't ever fall in
But I was born —
alas — already.

Cid Corman



“Not thinking” means eradicating or quietening the habitual, fear-based thought patterns that infest our consciousness. These manifest as chattering in the mind (the eternal commentary), moods, depression, hardness, guilt, blame, regret, etc: all instances of not listening to what is actually there, and in fact all instances of being haunted by the past. The work at hand is to rid ourselves of these barriers so that the world & life can flood in, and our own energy & essence can pour out. Tai Chi tackles this problem by placing the body first – at least more important than mind. Even the energy we encounter and develop in Tai Chi is of the body, even if that body is the interaction itself. By sinking & relaxing – allowing tensions to drop into the earth – the body becomes heavy and the energy becomes light. When the mind disappears then the energy reveals almost infinite detail – becomes itself our source of inspiration – perpetuum mobile. The problem with trained rational thought – i.e. thought that we assume is not fear-based – is that it is terribly coarse and artificial – unnatural – compared to the energy of living beings. Even the most intricate and complex of discourse is nothing compared to the delicate delightfulness of real energy. Complex discourse generally communicates to only a select few – those in the know – whereas delightful energy touches all. There is nothing wrong with intelligent disciplined application of the thinking mind. What is wrong is to become attached to the artifacts produced by such a mind, or to become tense in the use of that mind (which amounts to the same thing) – i.e. to be unable to cast off such a mindset when no longer required. The mind's understanding of reality is a world apart – better behaved and easier to control than reality itself, and as such is extremely seductive. Beware.
Positivity isn't just being willing and able to let your energy out, but being connected to what it is in nature that naturally draws your energy out. The former is aggressive; the latter is soft and could be a definition of deep listening.
foliate atriums
green allow pubis
cleft spine's base

enter a realm
albeit knock-kneed
the Great god Pan

flesh shared flash
splash into life
to utter root

Ronald Johnson

This isn't just sexual; there's real instruction.



The mind that thinks does not listen, how can it? It does not create either, it fabricates. Creation brings new life into the world: fabrication brings new artifacts into the world. The part of you that listens is your energy. Your energy should be intimately bound up with your body – they should be as one. This is the function of Tai Chi – to make them as one. The thinking mind, because it cannot listen, is not natural – it is itself an artifact. We love it because it offers us choices and gives the illusion of freedom and independence. But it operates by dredging the past into the present, clogging and congesting any natural delightfulness – any energy – with its sticky weight. It is always more coarse and less delightful than what is naturally there. Any attempts to unify mind and energy must start from a point of emptying the mind of thinking so that energy can develop and fill that emptiness. The mind then becomes a sort of overseer – a beneficient manager whose sole function is to stay as far back as possible so that things – life – can take its natural course. If this happens then life has an immediacy and a total lack of arbitrariness that overwhelms your being at every turn. You are issued from each wave of immediacy cleansed and emptied – connected. More loved and more loving.
When the beloved lies sleeping in your arms then everything is in its rightful place.