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
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Life Doesn’t Stop While You Sleep

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They are not arms, no,
But they reach, from a center
Almost impossible to see,
The home and seat of such
Persistence, this invisible
Drive toward life, and living,
The birth of all creation.
They grow long, wide and tall,
Tapering to a thin point
As if to ready the leaf
For its journey beyond itself.
Look closely, at each detail,
The marks it has accrued
By being exposed
To the elements that
Come to mark its existence,
The way they give
Each raindrop the only
Home they have known.
Look at the synergy
Of life on life,
On a concrete stoop
Of a house built
In the shadow of a mountain.
What if we pause to reflect
On the smallest things
That make and save a life?

– Tammy Takahashi