From The Dusk Of My Ghost-House - Journal Poems From 1970's - Poem by Warren Falcon
**a note on the poems: In the late 1970's I lived in a 100 year old house, no running water, no electricity. There for 3 years I read Ezra Pound's Cantos, myriad Buddhists texts, world poets all kinds, American Black Mountain poets, Olson, Wieners, Duncan, others (the old college over some mountain ridges near me then) , tried to sit zen and spin some sense of meaning from a very fragmented self...the poems are culled from the journals I kept when living in those Blue Ridge mountains, specifically beneath the largest mountain east of the rockies, Mount Mitchell.
The journals are also filled with quotes and epigraphs from my varied reading/study, and this mid-Autumn poem begins with those transcribed on or around the making of this poem, a passage from 1978, a poeming around Jesus's words, 'I thirst' (the most honest words in the Bible) which, thirst being desire, lead me to the Buddha who also knew much about that thirst, thusly:
But in my yashiro upon the hill I should have greatest honor: there betimes I should gather the multitude of my selves together.
...From the dusk of my ghost-house I should look for the coming of sandaled feet, and watch brown supple fingers weaving to my bars the knotted papers...
- Lafcadio Hearn, from Gleanings from Buddha-Fields.1897
ya selva oscura, but hell now
is not exterior, is not to be got out of, is
the cost of your own self, the beasts
emblazoned on you And who
can turn this total thing, invert
and let the ragged sleeves be seen
He shall step, he
will shape, he
is already also
___________into the soil, on to his own bones
he will cross
- Charles Olson, from In Cold Hell, In Thicket
Do not move
let the wind speak
that is paradise
- Ezra Pound, from his last Canto 120
down to Green
Glen quarter mile behind the back porch,
hole of the once-was-outhouse closer
to porch than the spring, nothing remains,
not even stench, teeming pretty with
moss, ferns there too, Queen Ann's Lace,
some paces on, follow thuds, old pear tree,
white, sheds fruit heavy beside, leans,
stumbling shed harboring moccasins,
rattlers, not one King seen in years 3,
yet sits long unmoved 1 rusted plow bannered,
layered, years-shed skins.
Clear spring's there, glancing the shed,
snake dread, dip up some water cool in
sun-bleached turtle shell, cracked edges
pre-Ching, red stained from hill-red dirt,
my little dipper holds both Big Bear and
Little, mendicant stars, and others,
sometimes clouds, mendicant too, when
comes up a night squall, to sit, when
thirsty, arms stretch out toward chipped
porcelain, a cup come with the house,
say out loud
in dark House in thicket
to the Master of Thirsts
No real taste
for blasphemy, me.
But can swallow
bears whole, me.
Even skins, the creeps
and willies, me.
and mortal, me,
a bit, say,
don't try so hard,
hear nearby cedars
they sigh, they
with last this
as I did,
do still, pray,
and not overly evergreen.
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