pain

pain
note from self

pain—such a tiny
word for a complex
set of sensations
the body wants to
name as unpleasant
but is that true?
it is so at the most
obvious plane—
when she resists

but if she opens—
this takes quiet and
deeper attention
moving in, moving near
snuggling with the
flicking, enraged alligator
rather than running from it—
the pain dissolves into
tingle and birr and zing

she reminds herself—
the body tells the truth
the mind, a blatant liar

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

it simply is

it simply is
note to self

this curious universe
seemingly boundless
birthing, erupting
decaying, rebirthing
or sucked into baffling
black holes
it all simply is—
time is meaningless
in this immensity
and we—
both a fleck
in this isness and
the isness itself—
not two

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

nowhere now here

nowhere now here
note to self

your planet lives
at the edge of a
galaxy—some
say in the middle
of nowhere
nowhere now here
it’s all a matter of
space—

your friend says you
can’t put “love”
in a poem—
has love become
commonplace?
hackneyed? cliché?
it cannot be—
love flows out from
that placeless space
eternal, pellucid radiance
into now here
notice that

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

slant of mind

slant of mind
note to self

look carefully—
does that slant of
mind serve you?
it might be outdated
and need an upgrade
or maybe it can be
thanked, released, and
honorably interred

shame, self-doubt
regret—can you let
them go? notice their
presence and
set them down
slants of mind shade
the truth—
why would you want that?

thank you to Margaret Rooney for the title phrase

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

it matters

it matters
note to self

it matters how you
move in the world, if
you are impelled by
friendliness and
kinship with all things—
do you corral the spider
and carry it outside?
or are you closed up
defended, and afraid

you are not a lonely dot
threatened by the wider
ocean—more like pools
that lap each other’s
edges with gentleness
and care
you will be someone’s
ancestor—act accordingly

—Thank you to Amir Sulaiman for the last two lines of the poem.

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

the owls sing

the owls sing

languid in the hot tub
late late at night
the owls sing for me
two mated pairs
high in the neighborhood
oak and redwood
calling to each other

they know I’m there
listening—
companions as I soak and
ponder how things are
their sonorous tones
a haunting music
both intimate and lonely

am I eavesdropping
on a love song?
the state of their world?
are they discussing the hunt?
is it a partnership dance
and I am their witness?
their sentience
sweet company

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.

sanctuary

sanctuary

note to self

this is where
I go to get quiet—
my inner sanctuary
sink deep and listen
if I am still, I can find
the cathedral of words
part statement of intent
part supplication
part prayer
words pouring
from the wordless
to write myself awake

there’s nothing to do
yet still I’m compelled
to convey what cannot
be written or spoken or
painted or sung or
sculpted although
it can be revealed
the ineffable—
transparent
luminous
empty
open

*thank you to Ayaz Angus Landman for the phrase “cathedral of words”

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.

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.

koan

koan

note to self
“This that we speak of can never be found by seeking, yet only seekers find it.”—Al Bastami, born 804 CE

it haunted
lived inside my chest—
for two years I
leaned into it
reckoned with
the felt meaning
I knew it spoke truth
but couldn’t tell you why
a patient excavation,
I breathed it
pondered,
but not with thought
lobbed it into
the big field
light splintered
the kernel inside
it opened
tight bud to flower
released its perfume,
the aching aroma of 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.

the grace path

the grace path*

he suffers
I cannot turn away
but truly see him
just as he is
lying on the carpet
always aching
self-medicating
fragrance
tinging the air

he does not complain
tends to his pain
as best he can
smiles, shows me
puppy livecams
my heart yearns to
enfold him in
mother love
he’s almost forty-eight
it’s not my place anymore

instead
he offers me a toke
maybe I accept
soft music and waterfalls
play on YouTube
we talk quietly of the big field
and the atmosphere
of that conversation
soaks the room in, yes, love
it’s taken care of
we lean into the grace path

*thank you Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer for the title.

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.