He sang my pulse a metronome

#4

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I once took a lover

Substantial as the undertow

He sang…

He sang my pulse a metronome

As mermaids surfaced mesmerized

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He showed me between his strong legs

Thick hairs, long soaked in the moon

Permeated with his strength and compassion

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To love and be loved is evermore

His words becoming the flesh of dreams

I moved like seaweed in his tides

Undulate and grounded

Melding with the cello of his landing

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Compelled, the spirits

Shufflling wistfully in dust

Remembered their names

Became eager for color

Incanted lullabies

Spellbound by our heat

As it rose to claim them

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Proud, my body animal

Went to ground bearing seed

I became witness and thunder

Rounded and swelling in storms

Unfolding broad wings bearing rain

A haloed tunnel of bone and cusp

~

All forgotten in the first cry of birthing

As in this moment my world split in two

And continued to divide into ocean and land

Both realms indigenous to the lost souls of Man.

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Artist:  “Whispers” Monique Passicot

Beauty waits

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There is nothing ambiguous about loss

it fills the spaces left behind

a tenderness that registers the slightest wind

so vulnerable it stops breath from breathing

in sudden recognition of how hard it is

to fill space when empty

waking each day turned inside out

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There is nothing ambiguous about loss

That sharp clacking of stone upon stone

leaving a path of shards

the hidden gravity that shades the color blue

Where memory seems more than skin

translucent but barnacled…

a legacy of the light of dead stars

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There is nothing ambiguous about loss

it separates the cut edges

opening abrasions with graveled hands

where hearing is more sensitive than sight

as music evokes both acid and balm

and the heaviness of dreaming

is carried in weary flesh

~

There is nothing ambiguous about loss

I am ever present in its deep grain

comprising the growth rings

through which side branches grow

I have become something other than I was

something less something more

while separated from beauty

~

This seemingly inexhaustible thirst

redeemed in the breath of wildness

each inhalation responding

each exhalation my wordless prayer

In animal distress

I bend low at the stream

Silent, listening…. I drink

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Photo credit: http://amolecularmatter.tumblr.com/

Pencil Noir #9

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The city’s crows peck and skewer carrion

selectively choosing between the perennial litter

left sodden and desultory in the winter rains.

I watch their darker shapes swoop about

on mite plagued wings

Curious and feisty feet hopping

through bony limbed trees.

~

I’d like to think we share

a similar response to the litter,

to this common visual insult,

despite our differences

of foot or beak or choice of cuisine.

They caw at me as I toe debris to the street,

summer’s occasional litter bagging I tell myself

improbable now in the drenched and cold.

~

Above me their black wings

posture and flex in raucous recognition.

I know they’re looking at me.

They’re intelligent birds

They own this side of the street

They recognize faces…

Startled I wonder what they see in mine?

Is there a password for this?

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pencil sketch: j.h.white

Pencil Noir #8

 

Winter Solstice 2015

Every December for the past few years I’ve curated a storm of snowflakes from white paper. I’ll accumulate a blizzard eventually. Try as I may, because they’re small, I’ve never been able to duplicate the same snowflake twice.

Each year seems to have a certain design theme…a defining scissors Rorschach test of sorts. Some years they’re gracefully hypnotic, one year  like a child cutting with blunt scissors. Last year the flakes looked more like an archaic language waiting to be deciphered. This year I wanted to branch out and so I added glue, a pencil and a little paint.

There’s not enough peace in the world to feel giddy this year making paper snowflakes. Not that there ever has been enough peace in the world, but lately peace seems more fragile. I’m aware of the families sleeping in tents and under trees along the roadside. I think of the children as I draw.

I’ve also been daydreaming about the absolute quiet of snow. I wonder, what would it be like if the entire world experienced a few days of absolute quiet?

 

Drawing collage by j.h. white

Microbial fantasia #3

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Trio 2~

Tepid fleshed, soft and juicy.

we move through

the microbial stew

with

winged thoughts,

hearts that prism lightning

and

opposable dancing thumbs

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“A scientist in his laboratory is not a mere technician: he is also a child confronting natural phenomena that impress him as though they were fairy tales.”  – Marie Curie
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“Common sense and a sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds. A sense of humor is just common sense dancing.” – William James
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painting /collage and poem:  j h white

 

 

Microbial fantasia #2

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fantasia #2_2

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Grazing

our lips meet

in wild fields

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 Before sailing

into

 a jungle

of beastly

delight

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“Passions that quicken your senses, fulfill; quench the thirst of lonesome years! Yet the sun has shadows, learn to control your will; to enjoy life long happiness, not tears! Wait! Rise to the stars above & thrill! Arouse the very flames of life! Sweetheart, kiss me: Hold still, hold still!”….. Excerpt from Dr Bronner’s original rant.

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaphttp://www.subgenius.com/updates/5-99news/X0007_BRONNER.txt.html

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“The human microbiome (or human microbiota) is the aggregate of microorganisms, a microbiome that resides on the surface and in deep layers of skin, in the saliva and oral mucosa, in the conjunctiva, and in the gastrointestinal tracts. They include bacteria, fungi, and archaea. One study indicated they outnumber human cells 10 to 1.”

Human microbiome …. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_microbiome

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Drawing and poem … j h white

 

Microbial Fantasia #1

Scan_2~

How many times will I shed raw and return?

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Or is it a stronger current

amorphously assembling and deconstructing

as I unwittingly rally

behind the porosity of thought

the seduction of words

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I am a small planet

a symbiotic microbial world

~

My peripheral orbit

 flings so far in its trajectory

that now

the axis is nearly invisible.

~

I can only feel it…

Imagining

this bright nucleus of love

teeming with life…

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Tantra involves a very powerful substance, which is buddha-nature, or our enlightened nature, eating us from the inside out rather than being reached by stripping away layers from the outside.

 Crazy Wisdom by Chögyam Trungpa

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“If something burns your soul with purpose and desire, it’s your duty to be reduced to ashes by it. Any other form of existence will be yet another dull book in the library of life.”
― Charles Bukowski

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Poem and sketch by j.h.white. …..I am aware that microbes are single cell organisms.  In representing my relationship with them in this series though,  I prefer immersion without thought, surrendering to the imaginative, perceptual and sensate possibilities.   Symbiotic microcosmic navigation amongst my tribes….xxoo

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Pencil noir #5

ebola workers~

I want to understand my part is in this tragedy. I see these images every day…..the white suits, the latrine green or bubblegum pink plastic gloves.

I stare at the photo from NBC World News.  I’d googled face masks worn in epidemics after listening to an NPR broadcast about the Liberian aide workers who have taken the job of bringing in the dead. How does one comprehend such a thing?

I decided to draw one of the photos…to find the spaces between the forms…to make this intimate in some way. It becomes a meditation as I concentrate on the crisp plastic suits, the individual postures of the men, the dark slits behind the masks. I breath in, paying attention to the act of drawing what I see.

I breath out. I begin to feel I am breathing for the aide workers who are praying that they remain protected within those suits.

I breath in. I breath out. I feel as if I am breathing now for the ones in the bags. The ones who are no longer breathing. I breath to ease their passage in death. I breath for the loved ones, the children left behind. I keep breathing and concentrating.

I begin mixing the colors for the gloves. Zinc white, phthalo turquoise, a little Jenkins green. I’m almost finished. While applying the paint to the gloves, however,  I am overcome. I watch as all my own sorrows rise to the surface. I realize now that sorrow is simply sorrow.  I am unable to separate one sorrow from another.

But through this experience I have learned one personal way to be with what is happening in the world I live in and am a part of. Each moment as I breath in, as I breath out, life presents itself.  This becomes my prayer….my quiet revolution.

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Here is the link to the NPR (National Public Radio) episode. It’s one of the more human articles and well worth a look.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/goatsandsoda/2014/08/28/343479917/they-are-the-body-collectors-a-perilous-job-in-the-time-of-ebola

 

Learning curves

ad77b0f12e5eaee4a641b06ef576b3c1~

The young girl, assessing the stylish posturing of her mother

critically ascertained its outward glow

as the wrappings on the package of a familiar androgyny

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The young girl, watching her father absently come and go

was held fast in his mystery.

Since he reappeared to participate in her deepest moments

it was heard as a message from god

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The young girl, never compromising her role as the eldest,

stealthily watched her brothers tangle in muscle

needing only to place her foot in the middle

to remind them this contest has many sides

~

The woman, quite old now,

loves the glow of her sweat picking beans,

considers all men brothers,

and happily listens to the birds in the trees

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