Category: poetry


Zen-kus

Zen haikus from this amazing Tumblelog Terrace museTerrace muse

Cold mountain – Han Shan

Zen poetry at its finest…..Nature – best teacher

this simple pleasure that could make me feel strange and sad and light at the same time was something I can call freedom. And in this ‘freedom’ rested the beginnings of faith, of an inexplicable lightness which was like the spreading glow from a lamp, moving away, carrying one away, as it were, from everything else, something which fails to measure the expanse of one’s life. For me, today, a good poem probably does just that. http://www.thehindu.com/books/singing-of-trampled-grass/article19689961.ece

 

http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/open-page/rain-spotting-on-natures-canvas/article19699449.ece

A couple of coconut trees spiral up into the blue sky. This is the square canvas with the ‘nature painting’ that my window affords — assuredly a sight for the sore eyes of this city-dweller wearied by quotidian cares. And so, many an hour on Sunday mornings is spent lazily focussing and defocussing on this work of art, embellished by a gentle breeze and bird-calls of various tones.

Water-brushed hues

And then comes the monsoon. Same time, same place. But the painting is now getting ‘water-brushed’. ………..The hitherto still-life painting seems to have taken on a life of its own. The tone and texture of its green components seem to alter as the raindrops descend on them. I watch in fascination as the green carpet below winks and glints at me. These are the hundreds of small leaves, of varying shades of green, doing flip-flops as they give in to the pressure of the droplets. The rapid change of surfaces creates an overall shimmering effect, maintaining a true rhythm with the steady rain.

Meanwhile, a little above the ground, the large taro leaves sway like elephant ears. Hardly under any pressure from this rain, they coolly flash and flaunt their water-droplet pearls. At eye-level is a staid wall of green in the background, formed by the closely packed, unremarkable leaves of a clump of trees. The rain seems to just disappear into this wall, leaving no trace of moisture. Shifting my gaze, I look up to see the unruffled leaves of the coconut palm shirking off this precipitation in the form of drops dripping from the tip of each leaflet. And so this painting gets embellished for those magical moments. Missing in action are the butterflies and dragonflies, subdued out of their flight by the rain.

And so, the minutes stretch to an hour or so as nature does its stuff, uplifting the mundane to the ethereal. Myriad film song lines pass through the mind, describing gentle rain. Time passes, fleetingly, unknowingly; the spell is usually broken by the lunch call or some guests. Reluctantly, I peel myself from the window, thankful to both circumstance and nature, for the serendipitous gift. And, a line from another poem (by John Updike) comes to mind: Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life.

Singing of trampled grass  Jayanta Mahapatra

I remember one of those simple pleasures that seemed to provide me with a new beginning or give a new meaning to my days. This was when I would let my feet hang still in the waters of a flowing stream and feel the water flow past past me. Or, climbing up the old mango tree, lying on a low branch, I appeared to be in another world, perhaps giving me a glimpse of the world inside of me.

Who will cry the cry of the dropping leaf? Who will whisper the whisper of the summer breeze? The politician or the poet? Or the silent pain of the pebble kicked by a child? Or the sob of the rose plucked off its stem? Who will mourn the moan of the trampled grass? Only the poet.

Perhaps poetry shall always remain an attempt to remove the burden of time from this world, and poems will continue to do this through images, metaphors, symbols. Time, ever present, ever passing, making us wakeful while we are asleep, making us hear our pulse in the silence of the night. I quote a line from the Atharva Veda XIX: 53.

Time drives as a horse with seven reins,

thousand-eyed, unaging

possessing much seed;

him the inspired poets mount;

his wheels are all beings.

And one asks: Does a poet use time to get away from time? Does he surrender to this rite, capturing in time a fragile moment of meaning? Merely for the sake of the feeling of freedom?

…..write through my anguish and the awareness of my presence, and in the process reveal myself, perhaps going out of myself, leaping into blindness or light.

Call it freedom. For what we dream can well enter the realm of undream, causing something to come out of it, something like a quiet self-discovery or even prayer, that brings a joy in the recognition of ourselves against the fear of time. Call it freedom.

………… not bother about the conscience of the world — simply be the water that flows, finding its own level, even if it is soaked away by the earth, with no trace left behind. In this, in such a poetry of today, committed to the many worlds we live and believe in — the human, the historical and the moral — can one touch the heart of freedom.

freedom? Is it the path through unknown places of the heart, a path that is both unreal and of a transcendent nature and yet is something that foresees the event of death? ……

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou, a poet and author who rose from poverty, segregation and the harshest of childhoods to become a force on stage, screen and the printed page, has died. She was 86.

Angelou died on Wednesday morning at her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, her son, Guy B. Johnson, said in a statement. The 86-year-old had been a professor of American studies at Wake Forest University since 1982.

“She lived a life as a teacher, activist, artist and human being. She was a warrior for equality, tolerance and peace,” Mr. Johnson said.

Tall and regal, with a deep, majestic voice, Angelou defied all probability and category, becoming one of the first black women to enjoy mainstream success as an author and thriving in virtually every artistic medium. The young single mother who performed at strip clubs to earn a living later wrote and recited the most popular presidential inaugural poem in history. The childhood victim of rape wrote a million-selling memoir, befriended Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela and the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and performed on stages around the world.

An actress, singer and dancer in the 1950s and 1960s, she broke through as an author in 1970 with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which became standard (and occasionally censored) reading, and was the first of a multipart autobiography that continued through the decades. In 1993, she was a sensation reading her cautiously hopeful On the Pulse of the Morning at former President Bill Clinton’s first inauguration. Her confident performance openly delighted Mr. Clinton and made the poem a bestseller, if not a critical favourite. For former President George W. Bush, she read another poem, Amazing Peace, at the 2005 Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the White House.

Angelou was a mentor to Oprah Winfrey, whom she befriended when Ms. Winfrey was still a local television reporter, and often appeared on her friend’s talk show program. She mastered several languages and published not just poetry, but advice books, cookbooks and children’s stories. She wrote music, plays and screenplays, received an Emmy nomination for her acting in Roots, and never lost her passion for dance, the art she considered closest to poetry.

“The line of the dancer — If you watch (Mikhail) Baryshnikov and you see that line, that’s what the poet tries for. The poet tries for the line, the balance,” she told The Associated Press in 2008, shortly before her birthday.

After renaming herself Maya Angelou for the stage (“Maya” was a childhood nickname), she toured in ‘Porgy and Bess’ and Jean Genet’s ‘The Blacks’ and danced with Alvin Ailey. She worked as a coordinator for the civil rights group Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and lived for years in Egypt and Ghana, where she met Malcolm X and remained close to him until his assassination, in 1965. Three years later, she was helping King organize the Poor People’s March in Memphis, Tennessee, where the civil rights leader was slain on Angelou’s 40th birthday.

“Every year, on that day, Coretta and I would send each other flowers,” Angelou said of King’s widow, Coretta Scott King, who died in 2006.

Angelou was little known outside the theatrical community until I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which might not have happened if James Baldwin hadn’t persuaded Angelou, still grieving over King’s death, to attend a party at Jules Feiffer’s house. Feiffer was so taken by Angelou that he mentioned her to Random House editor Bob Loomis, who persuaded her to write a book.

Angelou’s memoir was occasionally attacked, for seemingly opposite reasons. In a 1999 essay in Harper’s, author Francine Prose criticized Caged Bird as “manipulative” melodrama. Meanwhile, Angelou’s passages about her rape and teen pregnancy have made it a perennial on the American Library Association’s list of works that draw complaints from parents and educators.

“I thought that it was a mild book. There’s no profanity,” Angelou told the AP. “It speaks about surviving, and it really doesn’t make ogres of many people. I was shocked to find there were people who really wanted it banned, and I still believe people who are against the book have never read the book.”

Angelou appeared on several TV programs, notably the groundbreaking 1977 miniseries Roots. She was nominated for a Tony Award in 1973 for her appearance in the play Look Away.

In this November 21, 2008 photo, poet Maya Angelou smiles at an event in Washington. Ms. Angelou, author of

https://excerptsandm.wordpress.com/2013/06/24/my-picks-from-brainpickings/

https://excerptsandm.wordpress.com/2010/07/13/still-i-rise-by-maya-angelou/

Air

lovely …..free

my dream home

Tuscan Adventure

Tuscan adventure, was it all dreamed

Rolling hills played with mist, so it seemed

The people all smiled, full of life’s joys

Children played, both girls and the boys.

Foods of such taste that I’m drooling right now

As we sat and ate outside as nature allowed

Something so peaceful, a calm to the place

Like a painting on canvas trimmed with white lace…

chores

Thought for today september 9th 2013

Veraiconica's Blog

inderjit-singh

Let us not pray to be sheltered from dangers

but to be fearless when facing them.

Rabindranath Tagore

Photography Credit artfreelance.me Link: http://wp.me/p2Ag2U-5Yo

View original post

Gypsy Girl

solitude

Bastet and Sekhmet's Library

bamboo

Free Verse

Bamboo Grove

Walking in a bamboo grove
searching for serenity
the rustling leaves
gave me the peace I sought
their shade from harsh light
refreshed my soul.
Basho would say
that harmony can be found
even in a crowded city.
I travelled to a park
among pine trees, palm fronds
and a bamboo grove
and was rewarded.

View original post

Wave of Peace

Veraiconica's Blog

tore-serra

I dream
of a wave of peace

A giant wave
Reaching beyond the fences
Moving deep inside

A wonderful wave
Drenching all the minds
Pentrating deep in hearts
Changing souls forever

A tsunami
Devastating all walls of greed
Destructive to violent thoughts
Ripping apart perversion
Erasing arrogance

A wave of peace, streaming
envelopping the world
Softening hearts
Wisening leaders

Just peace
Dare to dream with me
Let us all pray together

Let’s dream and believe
In a wave of peace

Author : Aufie Zophy

Photography Credit artfreelance.me Link: http://wp.me/p2Ag2U-41m

View original post

Beloved One