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From BAMBOO RIDGE Issue Number 13, December 1981 - February 1982, New Moon

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 1:50 AM

          by Karl Ichida

It isn't that hard growing old
after all --
just a matter of moving beyond
the breadth of each morning
and forgetting your nightmares
caked and drying about your eyes.
So now you occupy yourself
writing poems about "time" and "reality,"
spinning cocoons of words
around each day
for some winter you fear will come
when the words can't be found
and emptiness weights your tongue.
But when you've written so much
and come so far
that even the shapes of landscapes,
the curve of the road
become unclear
how much better do you understand anything?
Like Pilate you must wash your hands
of this confusion.

Choose those things
that unfailingly astonish you --
a tea bowl moon tilted
against the black lacquer
of a spring night;
the tide pools of Honaunau,
City of Refuge,
where men fled
to escape themselves
and where you found
in the mirrored water
your face blended with the drift of clouds
and the dreams of sea anemone,
their clear arms wishing back
the rhythm of waves;
or friendships that have grown
like young fern tendrils knuckling out
in the clean dark air
of the forest.

These things will grow with you.
They are the comfort of your going.
And at night,
your poems, your words
and the nettle of images
will return around you,
blanketing your sleep
and carrying you silently
into the next dawn.

* * * * *

Bio: Karl Ichida was then the Executive Director of the Arts Council of Hawaii and was "still trying to write poetry."

Check this one out! Autographed an den : )


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