Category Archives: Daily reminders

leaving it all

leaving it all

note to self

Here is a villanelle, a French form established in the sixteenth century
that uses meter, rhyme, and a specific pattern of repeated lines.
This, my first attempt ever, is written in pentameter.

sometimes I long to simply take high flight
to leave this crooked world behind, alone
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

it’s madness here—the mean and righteous fight
they grab and push and nab the richest bone
sometimes I long to simply take high flight

and flee this place at dawn or plushest night
seek peace elsewhere, a place that is unknown
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

to watch all suffering souls, their dreadful plight
it hurts my heart and makes me feel like stone
sometimes I long to simply take high flight

to soar, and bank, to find the broadest sight
and then unearth the place that’s my true home
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

how will I find the strength for loft and height
so courage, love, and beauty may atone?
sometimes I long to simply take high flight
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, feelings, notes to self, suffering, Truth

touchstone

touchstone

note to self

in the presence
of a fresh breath,
today, amidst strife,
news so disturbing
I cannot watch
but know about anyway,
it trickles in the back door—
Ukraine’s destruction,
rolled back freedoms,
climate misery,
election madness—
still
joy flushes through
how can that be?
how can it not be?

wonder doesn’t arise from
this world—it seeps in
from the big field,
a welcome touchstone—
surprises, delights for
an instant or a day
the blessing of a passionflower,
their five-fingered hearts
begging bees, jasmine climbing
the arch in our front yard
fragrance scenting the air
fresh potatoes unearthed
soil clinging—a bounty
thirty-nine pounds!
carrots, too, their
salmon selves slipping
from their bed.
soak in this joy

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, feelings, Love, memoir, Musings, Non-duality, nonduality, notes to self, Poetry, spirituality

pilgrim

pilgrim

note to self

since eleven,
a pilgrim, a wayfarer
but not out here
on the inner, instead
what is this?
what am I?
what knows before
anything came to be?

prior,
prior to this outrageous
cosmos—and the birthing,
dying, exploding, expanding
delicious, rollicking mess
of a world, stardust everywhere—
prior to thought, what is that?
what sees through these
eyes? those?

it’s lush in here
the big field of knowing
the password is surrender
however, beware—
beliefs fall away
consciousness shines
a relentless taskmistress
it asks for everything

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Advaita, Awakening, Daily reminders, Dzogchen, feelings, Kashmiri Shaivism, memoir, mind, Musings, Non-duality, nonduality, notes to self, Poetry, spirituality, Surrender, Truth

dripping in the night

dripping in the night

after bedtime
water drips from the
cedar onto the roof
rolls into the gutter,
the plunks a consolation
to my desiccated heart.
blessed rain!

thirty-three years lived
off and on in California—
now, in one June downfall,
almost an inch?

I long to stay awake
soak in the rare and
fleeting melody, a denser
song on the shingles
hollow in the pipes

the rainfall, the cedar,
the shingled roof—
my very own self and
the friend in another guise

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Daily reminders, feelings, Love, memoir, mind, treasure

all you can do

all you can do

note to self

nothing’s “under control”
you may think it is, but
it’s a wild mess, wholly
pandemonium,
all happening, happening
redolent and rampant
spilling out in endless
variety—us included—
and brought into play

so relax.

there’s no stopping it
squalling newborn
assault rifles for sale
your first, tentative kiss
tender lips caress yours
friend’s death diagnosis,
and then your own,
sunrise aflame—apricot on cobalt,
sour milk and moldy tortillas,
puppy snoring in your lap
all of it, erupting at once

relax.

forget the mind
the craving to name,
to nail down something,
anything, and
give it meaning.
troublesome thoughts—
oh, suffering ensues,
that’s guaranteed.
meet it, whatever it is,
not slantwise, straight on

and relax

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, mind, Musings, Non-duality, nonduality, notes to self, spirituality, suffering, Surrender, thoughts, Truth

the ancient ones

the ancient ones

note to self

scientists discovered that
trees respond. that one, there—
does it feel the blaze suck air,
ignite the roots, until it’s
a pillar of raging light,
over 1400 degrees?
is this the tree that only
casts seeds when burned?
a phoenix of desolation?

all I have are questions.

what a transgression—a living
organism, 2000 years old,
is devoured by our careless
inattention. our greed.
where is our gumption,
our brilliance, spent?
what malformed gene
stuffs our head in sand?
we were warned.
we did nothing of merit
and here we are now.

girl, make a difference

comfort the young ones
respond and rescue
the four-leggeds, the
winged things that
we abandoned.
like phoenix rising from ash,
write, paint, engineer,
love this mangled world
with your whole being

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, feelings, loss, Love, memoir, Musings, notes to self, pain, Poetry, spirituality, suffering, Truth

every riven thing

every riven thing

note to self

looking around, it
all seems bruised—
maimed from the get go
and yet I hold hope
of a loving outcome
I know that hope is futile
yet I cup it in my hand
a delicate swallowtail of faith
bold black markings on
dandelion yellow

that’s why I read novels
but never thrillers. a complex
ending, okay, but positive, please.
there’s enough negligence—
and worse—right here,
dealt out on a daily basis.
our world, straight on:
starvation, murder, fires
but riven hearts radiating love—
piercing light, pouring
through the cracks like suns,
generous and free

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Daily reminders, feelings, Musings, notes to self, spirituality, thoughts

predicament of being alive

predicament of being alive

note to self

it isn’t easy on planet earth.
losses carve our hearts
staggering low-back pain
your family business fails
a parent’s sudden demise
empty craters of loss

a monarch flickers by
the mockingbird’s serenade
a dog’s cold nose in greeting
jasmine scents the air
chocolate melts on your tongue
the scent of a baby’s neck
enough joy to keep us here. just.

the predicament is this:
how to welcome paradox:
are you vast enough?
open? willing?
can your heart spread wide?
that is what is asked for
the courage to breathe it all

thank you to Margaret Rooney for the title phrase

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, dogs, feelings, loss, Love, Musings, Non-duality, nonduality, Poetry, spirituality, suffering, Surrender, Truth

a Pantoum on grief

The Pantoum is a poetry form originating in 15th century Malaysia.
It uses a pattern of repetition; the second and fourth lines serve as
the first and third lines of the stanza that follows.

grief

a pantoum in practice
(with thanks to Emily Dickinson for “dwindled dawn”)

every grief is a true grief
a different flavor of love
if we do not love
we cannot grieve

a different flavor of love
without heart opening
we cannot grieve
what if we welcome it?

without heart opening
life is a dwindled dawn
what if we welcome it?
sorrow and joy, one song

life is a dwindled dawn
strangled without love
sorrow and joy, one song
we’re asked to hold them both

we cannot grieve
if we do not love

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

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Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, feelings, loss, Love, Musings, Non-duality, nonduality, Poetry, spirituality, Surrender, Truth

way of the heart

way of the heart
note to self

the way of the heart
is sacred ground
tread with love, tend
with regard
with kindness
with care

dismissed from work,
life-threatening diagnosis,
loss of a friend or child or mate,
the way is the light that
perforates desolation
forgo the urge to bolt
distress is not infectious
this blaze of the heart
is meant to be shared

foremost, listen.
just that.
anguish cannot be “fixed”
heed the plight
of your companion
or your very own self.
your words aren’t needed
attendance is required to
honeycomb grief and
make openings for light
spacious
aware
clear

with thanks to Margaret Rooney for the phrase “ the light that perforates”

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

Leave a comment

Filed under Awakening, Daily reminders, feelings, loss, Love, memoir, mind, Musings, notes to self, pain, Poetry, spirituality, suffering, Truth