Friday, January 22, 2010




Don’t think of yourself

as a little thumb-puppet of starmud

stuck in your brain like a gumboot

talking to itself as if

your inner voice were a ventriloquist.

Don’t think of yourself as a self at all.

You’re never going to meet your own footsteps

coming down the hall

like the return of the prodigal

with money in her pocket.

Space is faster than light

and your mind is pre-existent

like a face without eyes

that conceives of everything.

Why cling like a ghost

to a straw of light in the wind

as if that were your only dimension

inside the black hole

that demands your attention

like something that’s eating you whole?

You can’t be lost, broken, found, wounded or healed like a thing.

The moon isn’t a scar from the last time you cut your wrist.

Your mind is the any and everywhere of a wind

that doesn’t insist on being anything.

Enlightenment can be no more attained

than ignorance can cast a shadow.

So why keep trying to weave the sea like the moon

into a flying carpet

as if you weren’t already walking on water?

The morning doesn’t come

like a revelation to space

and the night doesn’t fall like an eyelid.

Space isn’t brightened.

Space isn’t dimmed.

It accepts and rejects nothing.

Haven’t you noticed how the sea

keeps undoing itself thread by thread like your mind

whenever it’s caught like a dolphin in its own net?

Or whenever it pours the inexhaustibility of itself like the sea into a teacup

as if it could drown its oceanic awareness

in the black cool-aid of a single gulp?

Space contains everything

but even the absence of the light

can’t contain it

and stars or not

the night doesn’t stain it.

Like you space isn’t big or small.

Like you space isn’t sweet or bitter.

Like you space isn’t rough or smooth.

Like you space doesn’t foul its own perfume

as if death just stepped into the room where you were born.

Like you space isn’t blue or black or blind.

Like you space isn’t looking back at itself

like a forward-thinking behind

trying to sort out its ends from its beginnings

like a snake with its tail in its mouth

trying to swallow its head.

Like you space isn’t alive or dead.

And who speaks of this space as evil

and this space as good

as if you could split space

like the tree of knowledge

into a winter’s worth of seasoned firewood?

Space doesn’t hold its feet to the fire

in a bad dream

or address the orchard

like the singing master of a choir

in a good one.

Like you space isn’t many or one.

Like you space can’t be done or undone.

Why run these little choo choo trains of thought

along your electric nerves

as if you always had to be carrying something somewhere

like spare parts to a nightshift of stars

working on a tight schedule

to improve the constellations

by cramming more people into cattle-cars?

Like you space isn’t a prophetic skull

that died of thirst

trying to drink water from the eyes

of its own reflection

like the moon in the mirror of a mirage.

Like you space doesn’t sweep illusion away

like stars on the stairs with a broom.

The fish can’t fly

and the birds don’t swim out of it.

Like you space goes on forever

like the doorway of a threshold that can’t be crossed. 

Why go looking for yourself

like an echo in search of its voice

a mountain for its valley

a flame for its original fire

an hour in search of time

a wave for the sea

a feather for its bird

a petal for its flower

a myth of origin

even before you begin

a fountain-mouth for its first word

or the mind for the root of its own reality

when you know as well as I do

space like you is everywhere

at home in its homelessness 

and you can’t find what hasn’t been lost

like the face of someone

who was never at home in the first place.