Your Small Gestures Matter

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Sometimes I think that if we had even
the smallest notion in our wily minds
that keep spinning the same old stories
for us day after day, year after year,
of how many other ways it can always be,
we would immediately look for this door.
We would stop thinking we have to make
the greatest journeys and grand gestures
to make the profound changes we seek.
Have you ever tried to smile through tears?
It feels at first like an alien invasion, strange,
unwanted, until the body responds in kind,
ignites from deep within, bearing lightness.
The smallest hand gesture, brilliantly new,
and suddenly we are carrying ourselves
as a different person, with a purpose,
perhaps, we didn’t know had been calling.
Have you ever seen cherry blossoms bloom?
Without ever leaving its one sacred place
In the world of cycles, seasons and Time,
it does the only thing it knows how to do,
but does it with all the effort of its being,
which is not effort at all, but fulfillment,
and for the briefest moment in our history,
because every single blossom did the same,
we have a tree that moments ago was bare,
and is now grander than any work of art,
and the blossoms have not arrived to stay,
but to live out their short symphony with grace,
and leave the tree stronger for their presence,
and leave a world that will never be the same.
 
– Tammy Takahashi
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Petals Fallen in Spring

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Petals fall lush to ground,
not yet dried or decayed,
unsullied by wind, sun, rain,
handfuls of spring snow
tethered still to this life,
where we train our eyes
on what comes before
the last, the spectre of this
dancing alongside our joy.
Beauty gathers everywhere
before we have a chance
to discriminate and fear,
pierces though every want
we might begin to have
for things to be different.
Imbibe before pleasure
divides into pain.
It is here in this space
that miracles are born,
that the ways of seeing,
ways of our sacred being,
outnumber anything
we could possibly know.

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