Many Skies, Many Selves

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We call it the sky,
but have you ever seen
the same one twice?
Do we ever get
the moment back again,
even in memory?
Do we not, rather,
confront something new,
something that glides
gracefully through time,
that can never be caught,
and shows itself as ever-changing,
our precious symbol of rebirth,
and endless possibilities
for what is and can be?
The gift of time is that
we learn we can transcend it,
cut through its borders
by awakening to the vastness
that resides in a single sunset,
the uncurling of a flower’s
very first spring petals,
the unveiling of the night moon
in a night that seems
never to end, yet slips
through our fingers as soon as
as we reach to know it.
We call ourselves by name,
but do we love our many selves,
as we do the sky’s infinite faces?
 
– Tammy Takahashi
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When You Are Tired

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When it is difficult

To find the right view,

The one you have been seeking

And know makes everything sing,

And you cast your gaze wide,

And are filled with detritus:

Yesterday’s thoughts and creations

Turned grey, tired, the living legacy

Of mistakes ongoing,

When this is the challenge of today,

Start by narrowing the view.

Find the flower growing, miraculously,

Out of a pile of storied rubble,

The vines climbing the electric fence.

See the art succeeding to lift

A sad neighbourhood up,

The way the sun beams for everyone.

Take yourself off the road

In the direction of the horizon,

And look down, and your shoes

Are already off by now,

So that your feet are sinking

Into the grasses, fields, forests,

And the prickling sensation

Is your reminder of the struggle

That brought you here,

And there is always the promise

Of moss on stone.

Reach the mountain. Climb it.

Or maybe you have a potted plant

On your windowsill that wants you

To talk to it. Do better. Sing.

Tell it your deepest wounds

As you caress it to health.

When you have been filled

With everything that nurtures,

Widen your gaze again,

And bring your vibrant beauty

To our hopeful, waiting world.

– Tammy Takahashi

A poem for hope on a very important day in history.

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Today is a new day.
There is a little less here today
than there was before,
and there is also a little more.
Everyday, the moon
grows to perfect expansion,
or contracts until we are
in our night of darkness.
Everyday, we reflect
on what no longer serves us,
and build the courage
to invite more of what we need:
for our growth,
for the betterment of a world
that doesn’t need us,
and needs us fully,
and welcomes us so dearly.
Everyday, as dawn breaks,
and we peel the glorious
wreckage of night from our skin,
and shake loose from the dreams
of shattered yesterdays
and broken tomorrows,
we take a moment too look
for what as arrived, again,
just the same, and a little different,
anticipating our full participation
that can alter it all,
the course of our future,
in one small instant.
Today is the day to begin.
One decision, and liberation is ours.
One breath in the name of love,
and love is forever ours.

– Tammy Takahashi

Our Beating Heart

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Passing through,
deep-down reckonings with
our place in a world
made perfect with
our humble imperfections.
The sun, which does not dim
in our darkest days,
the sky, never once lowering
as we dive into our every shadow,
the view, always changing,
the light speckling magic
where we least expect it
before it continues its dance
across the spaces
we inhabit,
between us,
passing through,
moving toward what stills us
past change,
past commotion,
in our truest space:
our beating heart.
 

One Golden Evening

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And as sun goes down tonight,
I do not think of all those things
that will lay in surrender, to rest,
or wonder where they’ll go, if,
like the dazzling golden jewel
lowering into the silken waters,
they will seem to lower themselves
with great gentility, straight through
to the other side of the world,
where they will find their ground
of great comfort, dignity, grace.
I do not think of the black night
that is waiting behind the veil
of this grand spectacle of in-between,
or the moon that will ascend
to illumine the deepening cracks
between each of our aging bones,
each with her thousand stories
imbued with the powerful promise
to witness, create, destroy.
Instead, I divest myself of these,
I stand naked between sun and moon,
between here and where it all goes,
flooded with the play of now and then
on this body, sanding here, now,
shivering with winsome delight
because suddenly, nothing remains
but one golden evening that
knows every star, every flower,
every flight and every fall,
and it is all me, and it us all us
reflected here, making it whole.
 
– tammy takahashi

For a Short Time

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For a few days,
the cherry blossom trees
come alive in bloom,
decorating the world like snow,
as if in joyous collaboration
with the winter just passed,
as if to remind us of the continuity
embedded in all this change.
For a few days,
the senses are heightened,
the sky has opened
to give space for all that grows,
and the moon grows large and quiet,
illuminating the beauty
that wants to be seen,
touched, most of all, felt.
For a few days,
the gates to our perception fly open,
maybe slowly, if we are afraid,
and we can start with one blossom,
her fragile pink petals
delicately announcing herself,
giving everything she has
before falling to soft sweet earth.

– tammy takahashi

Don’t Say My Name

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Don’t say my name,
see what else falls away,
which words drop off
the tongue in light
of this new consideration?
 
I think of the moon,
and the image changes,
the word alone
conjuring faraway
tapestries of night,
 
also forbidding, in their
very distance from
here. Why not place
faith, instead, in their
colourful inevitability,
 
should we do the work,
here and now, of filling
ourselves with the kind
of light that fills the
contours of tomorrow?
 
Why not remove the
name, the idea, as the
serpent sheds her skin,
the very sheath that
gave her a body, her
 
movement, knowing there
is more to come, knowing
that the movement itself,
which is life and love,
will take us there?
 
– TT