Life Likes Living

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If we can distill one single essence
from the wonders that surround us,
it might be this: that life likes living.
Let’s say it again: life likes living,
life perpetuates herself with ease,
grace, and unfiltered generosity.
The Earth is thirsty; there is rain.
Creatures are gasping; watch;
seedlings and shoots are growing.
The trees they become give us
our own capacity to be nourished,
offer shade when the fire sun,
doing what it does best, emits
the heat that sustains our time here.
The world is glowing, ever-creating,
you can see in in the tiniest things,
the small flower peeking through
the concrete we’ve laid in hopes
of asserting a semblance of control
where we never really had any,
for more than an uneasy little while.
Life likes living, and will persist
in this, an uncanny triumph as great
as our capacity to be and to imagine,
and of course they are the same.
Our imaginations, too, have no end,
they grow and are fed on the same
rich soil from which everything comes.
We are tendrils growing with the trees,
we are stars piercing through the night,
and it is only when we choose to be apart,
to regard nature’s beauty as though
we are not embedded right inside of it,
that we compromise its right to flourish
and the unbearable pain begins,
because we’ve forgotten life’s love of life.
May we remember the heart of us,
borne of earth’s blood, skyward bound,
and serve the life that we are with joy.
 
– Tammy Takahashi
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I Bow to You

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I gather false strength
and stand upright,
me versus the world.
I throw my shoulders back,
throw my gaze long,
discerning and proud,
as though surveying
something that belongs to me,
and not to you,
or to you, and not to me,
and this is where desire dwells,
and a terrible need grows,
and I am in my perch,
and you are in yours,
and no proximity
can bring us together.
 
I bend down,
close my eyes, and bow,
and immediately,
the separation has disappeared.
We are not yet one,
this might be the work
of a lifetime.
But we are so much closer,
I feel so much closer here,
where I can smell
the earth below, that tethers us
to the same source,
where I can kiss your feet
in acknowledgement
of my devotion to you,
who have so much to teach me.
 
– Tammy Takahashi

Into Nature

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The gift of the outside,

Those parts we have never

Figured out how to take

In their totality,

For our own ends,

The flowers that are not

Sitting in water in a shop

Waiting to greet a loved one,

Someone saddened

Or in anger,

The trees that have not

Been torn down for

Our furniture, our journals,

And who has ever

Even dared to bring

A mountain home?

This is what we must seek.

We must leave our world

Of taking, using,

And throwing away,

And must move

Into the spaces

That have no need for us

Though their love for us

Is pure and unending.

We must bury our noses

in that aromatic space

between rock and soil,

where rain gives life

all of its memories.

We must return home,

Taking nothing with us,

But our wild, forever hope.

As You Are

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To see before

Before seeing again,

A look back

Through the storied

Remains, sifting through

Everything that has brought

Us here, to this moment,

Holding ourselves captive

With the walls of everything

We have always believed.

And what if we choose

To believe nothing but this:

The fact of our breath

Climbing and descending

The temple, our body,

Feeding the places that hurt,

Without needing to know

Why we are hurting so,

Loving all of us, anyway.

The work of our hands,

As they reach for the heart,

To hear the sound

Of it beating, to know

That this is also the sound

Of the world’s oceans

Ebbing and flowing,

And that nothing is more

Powerful than her roars,

Her swells, her motions.

To stand under the moon

And on a bed of earth,

And find that they meet,

From above, from below,

Right where you are,

And find their source

In the very center of you,

Not as you’ve been,

Not as you will be,

But as you are now.

Summer Reading!

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Have you gotten your copy of Land yet? Who doesn’t need a little bit of heart this summer?

Thank you to Golden Dragonfly Press for this amazing image!

Available here:

Amazon Paperback:
https://amzn.to/2M28sMD

Amazon Kindle Print Replica ebook:
https://amzn.to/2sO4wGv

Amazon Canada Paperback:
https://amzn.to/2thOViA

Amazon Canada Kindle Print Replica ebook:
https://amzn.to/2t6SpFn

B&N Paperback and Nook ebook:
http://bit.ly/2M4pk4b

Google Books: Ebook
http://bit.ly/2HT2udj

 

xo

Tammy

My New Book is Here Today!!

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Hello dear friends of my blog,

I wanted to let you know, as many of you have asked or already know about my new book, that it has just now been published!

You can find it here!

It is a new book of poems called LAND, and it has a few themes, all threaded around the idea of “What is home?” – home in the world, in our bodies, and deep in our very selves.

I wrote this book over the period of about two years, just about when my husband Takeshi and I started the process of applying for his permanent residency to Canada (recently successful!) after a few years of living in Japan. I now faced the idea of our eventual return to Canada, for me after an almost nine-year absence. Needless to say, many, many emotions have been swirling around inside of me about where and what home really means, how much has changed, in the world and in myself since I left all those years ago, and what the future holds.

As a writer, it is through words, and especially poetry of late, that I find my canvas, but also my therapist’s chair, and I know that there is a lot in these poems that will touch a chord with anyone who has experienced transition in life.

I’m so grateful to you all for your support over the years, both of my writing, and of me as I journeyed East and started this blog as my modest attempt to contribute to a sense of peace of this world. Your presence in my life means so much to me, and has kept me strong and joy-filled over the years!

One of the things I love about writing is that I can do it from absolutely anywhere, and that words have the power to transport anyone, anywhere, and anytime. I would be so honoured if you would consider buying a book, both to enjoy the poems in the comfort of your space, and to help this independent artist! It would mean the world to me to know that you stand behind the work (often unpaid) that I do, and I know I speak for many other independent artists when I say that every drop of support matters a great deal!

I did want to point out that there are other, equally wonderful and valuable ways of supporting me (and other artists like me) – you can buy the book for someone you care about as a gift; you can share this message, or my Facebook post about this book, either via email or any social media platform (I don’t have a smartphone, so I can’t be on Instagram, which makes me wonder sometimes if I even exist! J) You can write a review on Amazon or Goodreads (reviews help writers get more visibility – and more sales – on these platforms, where it is so easy to get lost in the sea of offerings); and you can let me know if you think you know of anyone I can reach out to who might be interested in the book. Most of all, I would love a hello and e-hug as I go through the very vulnerable process of sharing my work with the world!

Thank you so much for reading/listening/feeling this email. I hope you are all doing well, and I send much love.

 

Our Feelings, Our Earth

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the feelings crowd in,
let them be strong,
 
watch them with love,
knowing they are not you,
 
but a beautiful, integral part.
an outpouring of history,
 
a tulip budding from soil
fermenting thousands of years.
 
watch the feelings dance,
scream, wail their lifespan,
 
learn from their stories,
absorb the discoveries made
 
in their fleeing wanderings
over this bright, our earth,
 
sit with them, hold their hands,
then breathe, and watch them go. – TS