Saturday Morning Breakfast at Cooper Monastery

This morning Sam (the inquisitive six-year old) looked directly at me and asked, MK, what is God? Ah, well. Ahem. Excellent question Sam, I replied, casting sidelong glances at his parents who were on either side of the kitchen, bearing equally gratified smirks. They had fielded this same inquiry earlier in the week, both of them giving their best off the cuff answer, followed quickly by, You should ask MK. 


rain so fine my eyes
barely see it fall
from the empty, white-washed sky


"you can do magic..."


Rosie the Riveter

We Can Do It!


brotherly love

 Sometimes being a brother is even better than being a superhero. 
- Marc Brown

brand new window

five silent minutes
watching autumn branches blow
everything's right here


tuesday haiku

so many sounds one nut jar
makes music for new 
ears catching every ping


Thank you, Veterans.

Here's a refreshed poem written on study retreat at BCBS (Barre Center for Buddhist Studies) more than a decade ago.

painting: brucebaron.blogspot.com

to place the heart upon (saddha)

             no matter what happen, we can place our faith
             in the deepest parts of ourselves, our buddha nature,
             with its two wings of love and awareness.

                                   -Khenpo & Salzberg

The little creature that calls to me ten feet up
hops and nods with a bold white chest
and the richest set of slate gray feathers
I've seen. For a millisecond it's a bird,
then quickly becomes an honorable Korean monk
bowing in full robe beside the peeling trunk of birch.
And earlier, what delight when woodpecker came dashing
through the silence of the ridge
with its dot dit dot dot dit.
Woodpecker. Woodpecker.
Morse code.
dot dit dot dot dit dash.
In a flash I'm back to Korea with my father's radio
in the DMZ of '53. No longer
crunching my way through these woods,
I watch steam rise from the saffron smiley-face
some marine pissed in the snow
at twenty below on the 38th parallel.

Can't I ever just see a thing for what it is?

This isn't even a poem.
It's actually that walk in the woods -
half-lines written on trail, watching all the while
my fear of forgetting them,
my half-mind watching
my forgetting.
Then, the occasional twisted stump
or ice-encased branch with berries
to bring me back.

oh. yes.
i'm walking in the woods.

Can't I simply faithe my own experience?

Might be it's too much to make a monk of a bird.
War is too much, too. And sometimes, memory.
Still, a niggle beneath all that
ask me to consider
bird as bird,
peck as peck.
Asks me to love a thing on its own terms,
inside its own skin,
just as I love my father
and my traditions
in theirs.

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