Archive for the ‘Tom Turner’ Tag

I Am The Only One That Is Invisible   4 comments

Lummi & MCLACTom Turner — Image by kenne

The poem “Invisible Man,” by Pablo Neruda gets inside me, stirring my very being, mixing the past, present and images of the future. The poem has short lines making it seem longer than it is. Even so, I’m sharing some of Neruda’s powerful lines, which I have read, reread contemplating thoughts of my brother, Tom and existential invisibility.  

“they fire against the people,
which is to say,
against poetry,
but my brother
the poet
was in love,
or was suffering
because all his emotion
is for the sea,
he loves remote ports
for their names,
and he writes about oceans
he doesn’t know,
when life is as full
as an ear of corn with grain
he passes by, never knowing
how to harvest it,
he rides the waves
without ever touching land,
and, occasionally,
he is profoundly moved
and melancholy,
he is too big
to fit inside his skin,
he gets tangled and untangles himself,
he declares he is maudit,
with great difficulty he carries the cross
of darkness,
he believes that he is different from
anyone else in the world,
he eats bread every day
but he’s never seen a
baker
or gone to a meeting
of a baker’s union,
and so my poor brother
is deliberately dark,
he twists and writhes
and finds himself
interesting,
interesting,
that’s the word,
I am no better
than my brother,
but I smile,
because when I walk through the streets
—the only one who does not exist—
life flows around me
like rivers,
I am the only one
who is invisible,
no mysterious shadows,
no gloom and darkness,
everyone speaks to me,
everyone wants to tell me things,
to talk about their relatives,
their misery and
their joy,
everyone passes by, and everyone
tells me something,
look at all the things they do!”

— from Invisible Man by  Pablo Neruda
(Click here to read the complete poem.)

“Where do you go when you’ve already gone?”

— from Tom Turner’s notes

The Gifts That Keep On Giving   2 comments

Vessel of Life — Computer Art by kenne

Note: This posting first appeared in December of 2009

The things that happen to us in life do so because we act. The more we act, the more opportunities we have upon which to act, the more we connect creating a vessel filled with learning moments. If we don’t act on the moments, each will become an opportunity lost.  Even so, it’s important to not think about what may have been left behind.

My vessel of life is an alchemy of acts from which new opportunities are poured – acts attract acts. Paulo Coelho wrote in his bestseller, The Alchemist, “There is only one way to learn,” the alchemist answered.

“It’s through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey.”

It was ten years ago that I first read Coelho’s enchanting fable. It was in preparation for leading a group of four young professionals to the state of Sáo Paulo in Brazil that I learned of Paulo Coelho and his 1988 novel. The book fit well into my own philosophy and set the tone for the trip and remains instrumental to my life.

Again, one act leads to another when at this past Sunday’s Society of the 5th Cave reading club meeting, The Alchemist was selected for the March reading. Once again the concept of alchemy is front stage, this time from a different perspective, which will create many new learning moments.

I’m please to be reading this inspiring book ten years out. The Alchemist is the gift that keeps on giving.  Just today I received an email from my brother Tom, reminding me of someone I have also not read in recent years, American poet, Conrad Aiken, which my poem “Solstice Night,” reminded him of the first lines from Aiken’s long poem, “The House of Dust.”

The sun goes down in a cold pale flare of light.
The trees grow dark: the shadows lean to the east:
And lights wink out through the windows, one by one.
A clamor of frosty sirens mourns at the night.
Pale slate-grey clouds whirl up from the sunken sun.

In turn, his reminding me of Conrad Aiken, and the return of The Alchemist, that reminded me of the following from Aiken’s poem, “A Letter from Li Po.”

what’s true in these, or false? which is the ‘I’
of ‘I’s’? Is it the master of the cadence, who
transforms all things to a hoop of flame, where through
tigers of meaning leap? And are these true,
the language never old and never new,
such as the world wears on its wedding day,
the something borrowed with something chicory blue?
In every part we play, we play ourselves;
even the secret doubt to which we come
beneath the changing shapes of self and thing,
yes, even this, at last, if we should call
and dare to name it, we would find
the only voice that answers is our own.
We are once more defrauded by the mind.

Defrauded? No. It is the alchemy by which we grow.
It is the self becoming word, the word
becoming world. And with each part we play
we add to cosmic Sum and cosmic sum.
Who knows but one day we shall find,
hidden in the prism at the rainbow’s foot,
the square root of the eccentric absolute,
and the concentric absolute to come.

So many gifts that keep on giving.

kenne

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

Sunset Over The San Juan Islands — Live Everything   1 comment

Lummi Island Sunset (1 of 1)_art blogSunset Over the San Juan Islands — Image by kenne

Forming an archipelago in the northwest corner of the contiguous United States, the San Juan Islands are between the US mainland and Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada and are part of the U.S. state of Washington.

— kenne

“Be patient toward all that

is unsolved in your heart

and try to love the questions themselves,

like locked rooms and like books that

are now written in a very foreign tongue.

Do not now seek the answers,

which cannot be given you because

you would not be able to live them.

And the point is,

to live everything.

Live the questions now.

Perhaps you will then gradually,

without noticing it,

live along some distant day

into the answer.”

— Rainer Maria Rilke
(from Tom Turner’s book of quotes and notes)

Life Is Not To Be Passed By In A Rush.   Leave a comment

Sabino Canyon Scape (1 of 1) art II_edit blogSabino Canyon Scene — Computer Painting by kenne

Life is not to be passed by in a rush.

— Tom Turner

*****

Progress is measured
by richness and intensity of experience –
by a wider and deeper apprehension
of the significance and scope of human existence.

*****

Art is an indecent exposure of the consciousness.

— Herbert Read

 

Ah You Foes That In Conflict Have Overcome Me   4 comments

Tom Turner 2_edit B-W blogTom Turner (Seattle, June 12, 2000) — Image by kenne

         Poverties, Wincings, and Sulky Retreats

Ah poverties, wincings, and sulky retreats,
Ah you foes that in conflict have overcome me,
(For what is my life or any man’s life but a conflict with foes,
    the old, the incessant war?)
You degredations, you tussle with passions and appetites,
You smarts from dissatisfied friendships, (ah wounds the
    sharpest of all!)
You toil of painful and choked articulations, you meannesses,
You shallow tongue-talks at tables, (my tongue the shallowest of
    any;)
You broken resolutions, you racking angers, you smother’d
    ennuis!
Ah think not you finally triumph, my real self has yet to come
    forth,
It shall yet march forth o’ermastering, till all lies beneath me,
It shall yet stand up the soldier of ultimate victory.

— Walt Whitman

Tom sent this Whitman poem to me the day before my 65th birthday — “I knew you would like it.”
He was correct!

A Brother Lost   10 comments

Brother at Sunrise (1 of 1) blog framedBrother at Sunrise — Image by kenne

A Brother Lost

Now that it’s daylight at five,
I am awaken by the
Soft sounds of morning doves,


Delaying for a moment
My feet hitting the floor —
Just long enough

To think about my brother
Who no longer writes, 
Calls, or returns mine. 

There’s no reason.
He has never needed
A reason to not call — 

For him,
calls need a reason, 
even made up ones —

Sharing a quote,
Name now forgotten,
Need to reach out.

Now lost in the northwest,
Imprisoned by his mind,
Lacking courage to create.

Now each day I live with
Words no longer spoken,
Words no longer written.

— kenne 

“Though it seems that I know that I know . . .”   4 comments

Tom Turner

Tom Turner

Tom Markey

Tom Markey

Images by kenne
(This posting id dedicated to my brother, Tom Turner and my close friend, Tom Markey.)

Munford & Sons is a group I love to listen to and one of my favorite songs is “Timshel,” which  means “thou mayest” in Hebrew and is an important symbol in the novel, East of Eden, by John Steinbeck.

“But the Hebrew word, the word timshel—‘Thou mayest’— that gives a choice. It might be the most important word in the world. That says the way is open. That throws it right back on a man. For if ‘Thou mayest’—it is also true that ‘Thou mayest not.”

Timshel is everywhere in life, what existence is all about — “thou mayest” gives meaning to our thoughts and actions, the source of becoming emotionally attached to the world. Life begins to lose its significance as meaning become limited and bound. 

“Though it seems that I know that I know, what I would like to see is the ‘I’ that knows ‘me’ when I know that I know that I know.”

 — The Book, by Alan Watts

kenne

“Timshel”

 

Cold is the water
It freezes your already cold mind
Already cold, cold mind
And death is at your doorstep
And it will steal your innocence
But it will not steal your substance

But you are not alone in this
And you are not alone in this
As brothers we will stand and we’ll hold your hand
Hold your hand

And you are the mother
The mother of your baby child
The one to whom you gave life
And you have your choices
And these are what make man great
His ladder to the stars

But you are not alone in this
And you are not alone in this
As brothers we will stand and we’ll hold your hand
Hold your hand

And I will tell the night
Whisper, “Lose your sight”
But I can’t move the mountains for you

 

 

 

 

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