The Heart in My Body

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My heart in my chest,

Quivering, alone and unsure

Feeling small in a strange land

 

My heart in my head,

Rationalizing away the fear,

Lost among wayward thoughts

 

My heart in my eyes,

Hesitant, always curious,

Imbibing a world of wonders

 

My heart in my throat,

Stumbling over words not true

Groping for songs in the dark

 

My heart in my belly,

Holding space for the girl inside,

Crying with her until smiles come

 

My heart on my skin,

Exposed too soon, it feels,

Hoping wildly for tenderness

 

My heart in my hands,

Longing, feeling the way

To every fragile connection

 

My heart in my knees,

Falling to earth, breathing relief,

Sinking to a necessary pause

 

My heart in my feet,

Soaking up life, gingerly,

Taking all the steps I need …

 

My heart in my chest,

Back home, nothing looks the same

It is a wiser love, love, it is home.

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Trust and Love

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I think the word “trust”
and my heart cowers, trembling,
trying to squeeze
into the tiniest corner it can find,
to be left alone to pick up
a million shattered pieces,
find utmost tenderness
in the wake of a thousand heartaches.
There are so many ways of falling apart,
each feeling like a well-trodden road
that can take you to your place of pain
with the great ease of the unburdened.
The climb back, out, in the other direction,
the monumental effort of this.
The ache of one tiny swivel of the head,
the reward is instant.
Right there, just off to the side
on the road of worry,
a tree, gargantuan, protector and protected.
Both ways.
It makes no promises, asks nothing of you.
So you are drawn here, slowly, to observe,
to witness
(still clutching your aching heart)
the great way of the tree,
standing through all seasons,
accepting of its plush plenitude
and bear nakedness alike,
harming no thing,
nourishing as it is nourished
only to the extent that it can,
so that it always has what it needs,
the great lesson in this.
The great miracle
of being teaching being,
of all that is offered, all the salves
to a heart in need of healing.

– tt

For Our Beloved Lost Ones (After the Shooting), With Love

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For our beloved lost ones …

We are in the hallway,
we have our books, our friends,
and every wild certain hope for the future.
We step through the front doors
and into the hallway,
end in sight, giddy for the outcome,
a turned corner, a new day,
for love, for lovers, for learning.
It is our work to be young,
to shoulder what responsibilities we can,
to live in a world with kindness,
to be protected. To be protected.
We have lost so much.
We have lost almost everything.
The hallways, now, lined with our terror,
the classrooms teaching principles
that are not abided by,
so our lives are torn asunder.
It is our right to be young.
We are taught to trust and obey
in something that is now sick and dying.
It is time to to tear these hallways down
and find what serves,
what is worthy of our belief,
to find a radical starting again.
To plumb the depths oceans
and scale the mountain peaks,
to sit in dark, quiet caves and listen,
to learn our truths for the first time in our young lives,
and believe in them above all else,
and build with love
on the ashes of our beloved departed,
grow flowers where they lie,
honour them every hour of every day,
not stop until what is sick is healed,
be the change that will save the world.

– Tammy Takahashi

 

 

 

To You, with Love

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I look to you,
who knows the way
to plant your feet on the ground
when the world threatens
to dissolve from under you,
to do this with grace and resolve,
with the heart of a warrior,
who not only finds the ground,
but dances and pounds and writhes on it,
staking your claim if only for awhile,
knowing it is not yours,
but that it fully belongs to you,
this earth, this day, this life.
I look to you,
who can settle into your heart
and find space to breathe
in the rattling cage that houses you,
around the canyons of fear and pain,
who can roam around your own body
with interest, curiosity and reverence,
knowing that each, smallest part,
no matter how much it threatens
to overtake you, is your portal
to the most wondrous,
expansive spectacle there is,
your own florid existence.
 
– tt

On Grief

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The hint of absence.
I can feel
that I carry grief in me
that is far older
than I’ll ever be.
I know that this
is one of so many things
that unites me to you,
us to each other.
Let us take extra care.
We are visible.
We are invisible.
We do not always know
what we wear,
what visits, haunts,
confuses, wrecks us.
What is harbored,
what needs to emerge,
what needs to be held
so tenderly.
With all our love.

– tt

How About Kindness?

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How about, instead of asking
where I come from,
you ask me where I want to go,
and instead of offering your name,
you find self in a warm embrace?
How about a smile instead of a rebuttal,
an ear for listening instead of shouting?
How about looking at a rainbow,
and marveling at how few you’ve seen,
and are likely yet to see in this life,
and mark the day as a miracle?
How about making wondering,
wandering, too, your true vocation,
becoming a master in the art of awe?
How about looking around
and seeing it all for the first time,
inventing new shapes in the clouds
before they, too, disappear,
and how about inviting this change,
and finding beauty in what can’t be held?
How about finding a new perspective
instead of delighting in the already known;
how about finding and honoring
both the teacher and student in you?
How about taking your shoes off
and grounding in the earth,
and feeling this support through life?
How about talking to trees,
Finding songs in a breeze,
How about being still and
catching it all and remembering:
There is so much love where I am,
and I am here, and I am free.

Welcome to your Garden

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Welcome to the garden of your life.
It’s so pretty here, if you find yourself
taking it all in at exactly the right moment,
when the flowers are in full bloom,
and the sun glints just so through the treetops
and into the lush, verdant space around you.
There is someone praying, maybe it’s you,
for relief from the feeling that everything should stay,
that the worst thing that could happen
is that all of this is going to change.
It is a deep and earnest prayer
that brings tears to the eye
and a deep rattling within the heart cage.
Maybe your eyes were closed, so you open them,
and the sun’s rays have shifted just enough
that the flower petals, as you take note,
have changed their direction to follow
the source of their nourishment.
It’s still your garden; you are still
in its endlessly deep, luxurious confines,
and you’ve never felt more free,
letting the changes do
what they were always going to,
and these transitions around you
are the heralding of life,
it’s coming and changing and going,
and fear that it will all disappear
is the golden emblem of your humanity.
It is your gorgeous humanity,
singing and haunting and taunting,
crying and pleading and laughing.
The garden takes it all in,
has only love to give back.
Take note of your garden; take it all in
with the time you’ve been given.
There is so much being offered,
and it’s all for you.
 
– TT