Friday, August 28, 2009

A Walk in the Neighborhood with an Eye to the "Incongruous" (whatever that is)

Over at the blog "Friday My Town Shootout" it's incongruous photos in my town as the challenge this week. Taking up the challenge in a pedestrian kind of way, here are some ideas and some comments from the way-seeking mind.
Good fences make good neighbors?
Did the fence come before or after the flowers?
These are amaryllis.
They bloom every year from baked dry ground
Where no leaves show,
Just at Lughnasad, beginning of August.
Around here we call them
Naked Ladies. Does anyone know
Where this name came from and when?
I admire how the spiralled slender stalks
Hold up the heavy heads of flowers for
A whole month or more, with no water,
No visible means of support. 
They shine in the hot sun and don't wilt.
Amazing practice.
I don't think they came from these parts
To start out with, though. Who saw fit
To bring these beauties here?

This is the newest neighborhood watch sign.
And this is the Welcome Sign.
Much appreciated by this gentleman on his rounds,
And these ladies, as well.
For our final feature, analogous to the satellite dish
on top of the igloo
over at the blog ....Just Alaska, 
we have the neighborhood yurt on top of the
rockingest solar panel array in the East Bay.
There are more and stranger things in our universe than we dare ever see.
Incongruity is probably in the eye of the beholder, and if we had true beginner's mind, we would never be able to catch that incongruity--it's all just things-as-it-is, as Suzuki Roshi would say.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Does a dog have true nature?

Freya and I live side by side, but hardly in the same world.

At night, she gets up from time to time, circles 2 3 4 5 times and flops
gently oozing her body up against mine. It must help with my snoring.
By morning, she has oozed me over the edge of the bed.
Sometimes I wake to her vivid dream
Dodging, twitching, yipping, leaping for that squirrel
That just escapes, again. 
What does the squirrel's tail
Look like or smell like to her in her dream?
What is the dog-version of squirrel's true being?

I think her squirrel is not the same as mine:
   bushy russet tail sharp sharp glittering black eyes,
   claws, twitching nose, patient regard for us
   down here below, total ownership of telephone wires
   and walnut tree, absorption in taking a nut to pieces,
   oblivious to the magnificent soaring leap Freya has made,
   so acrobatic herself but no match for squirrel's speed and balance.


 I try to "see" squirrel from Freya's place. Just one piece of a
                                  Huge Puzzle.  
I can only see the way every hair in her is quivering, electrified.

And that she can Stop, totally Stop the World, body and mind
                  totally dropped away.

Waiting for that squirrel to Come Down into her
               Irresistable Force Field.

No matter how many times squirrel has shown it is
         Above and Beyond Her Reach.

What might Freya say if she had words?

We Dance together.
So great to have something small and furry 
and quick-moving to go for. 
Heart surges, gets huge in my chest. Every muscle waits. 
I know one of these time I'll get my mouth on it. Chomp! 
For this I was born, for this I came.
No life apart from now, now, now, the dance together.
Apart from that, boring boring boring.
Same food every day. Chairs are soft
and don't fit quite right.
Walks too short and too seldom, 
I take what I get and I don't get upset.

Squirrel and cat, moths, flies and bones, 
the dead fish and dead birds on the beach,
so delicious to roll in.
There is no other life.

Monday, August 24, 2009

What can we say that's true?


   Long ago I concluded that "god-talk" was delusionary. Human equipment is too small to grasp What Is, Is-ness, what moves the sun and the other stars, what time is, Before, Now, After, etc. etc. And our language is even more inadequate when we try to share intimations we've had. We continue to be the blind ones trying to talk to each other about the Elephant. Even talk not using the term "god" has the same problems.

   Sometimes I get a glimpse of what being-in-itself might be, looming just outside perception. If each of us has this essence, this buddha-nature, it must always already be actually there. One night, I was taking in the fading light of dusk, looking west, and experienced the Dark emerging from the Light. All day we walk around under what we call The Sky, as if it were an object. The brilliance of the sky takes over our sensorium, our awareness. But the Dark is out there all the time. It never actually goes away.

    All the stars and the galaxies are always already there, emitting their light, too, in the midst of deep space and void. (How few years we humans have actually had instruments to let us "see" them there.) All day long, the buzz of all the nearer sunlight in our eyes keeps us from seeing them. We think the sky is a solid sphere enclosing us. Illusion. Yet not illusion.

I'm off to walk through my day with this nugget to chew on. May all beings realize their true nature.

Friday, August 21, 2009

 The Odd Signs of the Times in California

Having delighted in the photos I just discovered on "My Town Friday Shoot-Out", I am uploading a few amusing sign photos, some local to the Bay Area, some from the "local" Sierra, in honor of this week's challenge: Funny Signs from My Town. Where is "my town" these days, anyway? Who is the "I" to have a town?  Our dog, Freya, has her own take on these things.

That which is emptiness is form, that which is form is emptiness.

I'll bet there's a good story here. Let's see.

They tell me the dogs of the Dow aren't welcome around here.

In this economy, no guarantees.

It wasn't our fault we all took a bath.
How do we get out of this mess?

If the pediatricians look like this, what is the chance for the rest of us in the health care world?
Altogether, Signs of the Times are most amusing.
May you continue to live in Interesting Times, and have your eyes
open for the funny edge of things!