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Poem: A Passage to the Present

I met you in the mountain forest,You--sunlight skipping through the offering pine boughs, You--the fragrant needles, cones--above, around, below. You--slender stream, water diamond bright, smiling over the brook bed pebbles.

I, confused, still sad for dreams of childhood still unfulfilled; I, cynic in urban presumption; I, that suave assurance of silicon civilization .

Your sweetness caught me unprepared. And yes, it tasted good. But I'd not admit it, and so I wandered further on.

Passing through, the forest opened upon the mountain bowl-- grass, rocks, ice, and hovering sky. And you--still waters now of the high born pool; And you--flowering carpets: yellow, brown, and pink; And you--healing silence; And you--the empty noble space.

A sigh released--my cherished greed somewhat shaken; slow inspiration--my self-involvement, this too shaken. Breaths are mist--despair and anger, these also shaken. Unwonted tenderness in my steps, I circled round and moved along.

Until at last reached the Open Ending and all around me saw the faces of the world, the trillion beings all wrapped in tears. Cascades welled into the channel. Here is born life's weeping stream.

Gazing softly up the valley, I found you blooming there, daffodil­-- simple blossom, simply living, simply knowing soon is change— and then the breeze. Here I sit, this moment settled who I am. This is enough.

Mitchel Brant Turbin
Seattle, Washington

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What is Mindfulness

Thich Nhat Hanh January 15, 2020

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