"The Bud" by Bei Kuan-tu

As Winter gives it's final fro,
As luminous frost disappears into daylight’s song
A single bud beckons to discover its life amongst the coming Spring.
Tightly and securely bound - waiting, hoping for it's awakened state.
It finally yields to a perfect hue of tender green

How majestic you are, even in your child-like state.
With layers opening at a snail’s persevering pace.
Beauty unveiled and a majesty not of this world.
Ever expanding - pursuing the call of intensified light.
Surrounding you is your lineage,
turning heat into soothing shade
for all who partake in this perfect splendor.
You are unique, yet connected to the whole.

As the months move subtly by
change is a gathering force. 
Sleepiness comes over you,
like a suckling newborn.
From jaded green, to a brilliant yellow, to blazed and fiery orange,
your brilliance awes the sublime—perfect, and temporal.
Exiting your home whirling winds carry you
beyond effort or will
like a child swaying on a swing
Without a tear you land without expression or sound.
And find your place amongst the many
in a clear and cleansing stream.

Onward you go
past the rounded boulders and churning tide.
Away, away, on a journey of ages past
only to repeat nature's eternal call
Finally, purposely,  disappearing into perfection
And in your place, amongst the old oak,
another takes your honored position
and ponders it's future journey home.

© 2015 Bei Kuan-tu All Rights Reserved

"Love After Love" by Derek Walcott

Derek Walcott
The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit — Feast on your life.

The most important West Indian poet and dramatist writing in English today. Walcott has lived most of his life in Trinidad. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1992. In his works Walcott had studied the conflict between the heritage of European and West Indian culture, the long way from slavery to independence, and his own role as a nomad between cultures. His poems are characterized by allusions to the English poetic tradition and a symbolic imagination that is at once personal and Caribbean.

"Hitcher" — Bei Kuan-tu


As I stand alone on an open highway, 
a cool breeze wisps against a single descending tear,
as an accordion exhaling its final sounds. 
Emptiness weakens and overwhelms me,
like molten lava being drawn gravitationally
to its climactic end.

Gazing out towards a spectral horizon, 
imagination extracts me of all sensibility and perspective, 
What is whispered within is the mystery of a masters brush and chisel. 
Clouds rest their weary bottoms on rocky plateaus 
appearing like chairs crafted from impenetrable stone. 
Particles swirl in multiple directions  
creating dancing dust-devils in movie-like animation. 
I'm awed by the wily wink of these wonders
For this day, mystery besets me 
and silence engulfs my tender heart.
I feel so small;  
as if a minute spec of matter 
unknowingly placed somewhere in the cosmos.
And alone... so very alone.

I am a captive to the lines of this interstate.
And strangely, I sense an illustrative and profound Presence: 
incomprehensible, unnerving and unknowable.
I’m drawn to it's shapeless shadow;
desiring to dance to it's darkened delight.
And I get so very close. 

Though maimed by years of crooked blindness
I unquestionably glimpse and sense it’s formless Presence ; 
though chilled by what feels like eons of self-doubt, 
I’m aware of its alluring eyes observing me.

One tear becomes many, 
and like the ever expanding nature of constellations in the cosmos,
they flow.
I sense my end and beginning fuzing mystically into one.
As I yield to this all-encompassing specter,
like dew vaporizing into sightless sound,
my existence reaches its final stay.
For my undoing is upon me
and "I," without thought, am no more.

What remains of me is the road itself, 
simple, solitary and paradoxical.

© 2012 Bei Kuan-tu All Rights Reserved

"Through a Window" by Jane Goodall

Jane Goodall-image

There are many windows through
which we can look out into the
world, searching for meaning …
… Most of us, when we ponder on the
meaning of our existence,
peer through but one of these
windows onto the world.
And even that one is often misted over
by the breath of our finite humanity.
We clear a tiny peephole and stare through.
No wonder we are confused by the
tiny fraction of a whole that we see.
It is, after all, like trying to
comprehend the panorama of the
desert or the sea through
a rolled-up newspaper.

—Jane Goodall, Through a Window: My Thirty Years with the Chimpanzees of Gombe (Mariner Books, New York, 2010)

"Pathways" by Mark Nepo

Fence pathway-79c364d01d9f1bb25e80def9673aab57
---"Fence Pathway" by Drew Hendsbee

I don’t know why I was born
with this belief in something
deeper and larger than we can
But it’s always called.
Even as a boy,
I knew that trees and light and sky
all point to some timeless center out of view.
I have spent my life
listening to that center
and filtering it through my heart.
This listening
and filtering
is the music of my soul,
of all souls.
After sixty years,
I’ve run
out of ways to name this.
Even now, my heart won’t stand still.
In a moment of seeing,
it takes the shape of my eye.
In a moment of speaking,
the shape of my tongue.
In a moment of silence,
it slips back into the lake of center.
When you kiss me,
it takes the shape of your lip.
When our dog sleeps with us,
it takes the shape of her curl.
When the hummingbird feeds her baby,
it takes the shape of her beak
carefully dropping food into our throats.