Who Have Lived

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It is hard not to see
the people in their absence
the spirit of them
in the places they’ve been,
the things they have loved,
the clothes they have worn,
the chairs they have inhabited.
It is an absence so palpable
that it teaches me
about transcendence,
so that I know that between
presence and absence
there is no distinction,
that what lives, lives,
and when it does not,
it can never be gone
for our having known it,
and more, for our having loved.
 
– Tammy Takahashi
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Loving Deep

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The sun’s love sets oceans ablaze,
sprinkles fields with wild-growing flowers,
has trees deepening roots, spreading wings.
We see the array of nature’s offerings:
they are gleaming, growing, taking the love
and honouring it through pure acts of being.
And we? We too are the recipients
of all the love the sun has to give,
and it has all of it, and gives it freely.
We, too, absorb, grow, and breathe,
and mark the passages of our lives.
When did we stop understanding
that we are at heart love’s creatures,
that nothing is demanded of us
but that we find a way to live as an expression
of this love as fully and freely as we can?
May we gather together in the blanket of love,
and and cherish what is given to us in abundance,
and dedicate ourselves to loving deep,
loving wild, loving pure, without end.
 
– Tammy Takahashi

To Give is to Take

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Show me the way to my lost dreams,
and I will dream huge for us both.
 
Carry me to the end of the rainbow,
and we imbibe each colour together.
 
Take me outside in the pouring rain,
so that we can dance as only two people can.
 
Lead me up the steep mountainside
to learn shared secrets of the thinnest air.
 
Remind me that giving is taking,
and the world will never be hungry again.
 
Tell me again that I am the world,
and I will work to heal to my last breath.
 
Teach me to give with all my heart,
and I will give it all to you.
 
– Tammy Takahashi

A Travel Poem

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What is the promise of a new journey
if not an awakening of soul’s stirring,
an expansion of the privileges of new dawn,
and the singular experience of renewal
as we search for the morning sun
after night’s dark and restless charms,
and bathe ourselves in the soft heat
that has been all the way around the world
and has so many stories to tell us?
How is it possible not to seek communion
with each of the places the sun has been
that has painted us with all this life?

– Tammy Takahashi

We are in This Together

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If it is an echo that you seek,
a far-off cry, resounding and important,
reverberating off the storied walls
of ancient times, if you are reaching
very nearly into the great void
hoping to hear the sounds
emerging, muffled and true,
in the great winds that have brought us
everything we know and hold dear
from places we may never go
and people we might never meet,
or be, if we are straining to hear
the sounds containing all that wisdom,
and we will sacrifice everything
we know, for that which we don’t,
if fear has turned into determination
and the seedlings of love keep growing,
then know: you are being listened to,
you are heard, felt, seen, and loved.
You will not fall. We are seeking together.
 
– Tammy Takahashi

Taking the Day

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Without knowing it, I have been sleeping
with tiny branch ends and leaves in my hair,
a tumble of the best of me, and of world
working together to spin life from the dark.
 
Without knowing it, I have fused with the trees,
and we have both marked our passage in time,
though they gave me eternity, wisdom and patience,
and I, what I could of my fragile, fledgling heart.
 
Without knowing it, I have passed the seasons
watching momentous stillness, then rebirth
following with eyes wide open the cyclical rhythms
to their soft sweet end, the finest of beginnings.
 
Without knowing it, I have been taking the day
for the profound lessons each of them extends
and some seep into me like the sun through skin,
and most lay buried, seeds that too, will blossom.
 
– Tammy Takahashi

Heart Garden

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And sometimes, in the fleeting breath
between thoughts, in the moon
that peeks through restless clouds,
in that perfect moment between
lost, shivering memories and lifeless
future projections, we truly arrive,
to where we are, and maybe the gates
don’t swing open and invite you
into your life, but maybe you approach,
cautiously, with feet more assured
the farther you go, and maybe
you stop to gather the beautiful seeds
you can plant and nourish as long
as it takes to grow them into
the wild, stunning garden of your heart.
 
– Tammy Takahashi