our wildness on the mirror of time

Jacaranda mimosifolia

Jacaranda mimosifolia

no mendacity in the natural world ~ just an
untamed grace in the meditative industry of ants,
in the peaceable company of small creatures
going about the business of food finding
and mating and homemaking in the loam of
this province, the republic of innocence

here is the soul-filling beauty of sun rising over
jacaranda as she paints her joy on a blue dawn;
robin with her russet-hued breast hunts for worms,
her instinctive motherhood proud of babies
the spar and scrap of nest life . . .  it is in this -
the uncivil cosmos – that the gentle breezes

dance with us on our mud-caked travels along
ripening pathways through meadow and brush;
as the flaxen sun shifts from rise to fall,
our hearts beat with their ribbons of ruby life,
pulsing with ebbs and flows of love and fear ~
soon – we know –  clouds will gray with the

inevitable dark and shivered moon will show
her craggy depths, sooty with doubt and danger,
our earthiness projecting its own shadows;
still we trust nature’s homilies, content in this
province where we’re left to be ourselves, left to
write our own wildness on the mirror of time

How near to good is what is wild.” Henry David Thoreau

Today is Writers’ Fourth Wednesday. Please feel free to link in a work of yours for this event sponsored by The Bardo Group and hosted by Victoria C. Slotto. Details are HERE. Your participation would be most welcome

© 2013, poem and photograph, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved

sleeping with the moon

IMG_20140525_105329557garden speaks through its flowers ..
a dharma talk on cosmic truth, its syntax
is the rush of joy and different hues
written on the harmony of loam,
of grey rock and sturdy leaves ~
an elemental symphony …

a webbed raiment as transient as foam, a
feral scent flirting with a lilting breeze,
a few sleepy stepping-stones along the
path and the budding, the blooming, the
falling into decay, undisturbed by worldly
cares, a green nirvana of prickly branches

and cherry trees, the wildish thorned
rose and the innocent daisy, palm fronds
and color spectrums, no burdens, just an
isness of small beings embracing the earth,
dancing with the sun, sleeping with the moon

The temple bell stops but I still hear the sound coming out of the flowers.” Matsuo Basho (1644-1694), Japanese poet of the Edo period

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© 2014, poem and photographs, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; photos taken with a Moto G

through the ache of time

Jamie Dedes:

My poem today on The Bardo Group blog …

Originally posted on THE BARDO GROUP:

720px-52706main_hstorion_lg see it moving – Life!
moving through the ache of time
seeking that place
where identity isn’t worn on a sleeve,
where individuals challenge the tribe,
where beauty frees itself from convention,
where the chains of fear dissolve

- Jamie Dedes

© 2013, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved * Photo credit ~ NASA, U.S. Public Domain

photo-on-2012-09-19-at-19-541JAMIE DEDES (The Poet by Day)~ I am a mother and a medically retired (disabled) elder. The graces of poetry, art, music, writing and reading continue to evolve as a sources of wonder and solace, as a creative outlet, and as a part of my spiritual practice.

View original

do not make war in your heart or upon your mother’s body

Cliff House from Ocean Beach

Cliff House from Ocean Beach


it must be painful for them to write, those poets in tough-times and hard places
where blood and tears and poverty contaminate the air, stain the sidewalks, and consume the people

the blood must be soul-sick and rusted and tasting of acid, not salt,
and the poems meant to heal the writer and stroke the cheeks of the wounded,
to dry their eyes and gently kiss their gray heads

to poem in such places must be like walking shoeless on glass shards

perhaps the most sacred thing in the dream-time meadow of poets’ desire is Light ~
can you awaken to meet the Divine on the battlefield, in the camps, in government housing or in the ghettos?

if so, you are a saint, not simply an artist


in my small world, my civilized world, people fall asleep reading or after making love or playing in the yard with their children
if they wander, it is through books or planned travel
there are luxuries
there is food
there is cleanliness and paper on which to write
no bombs are dropping to scorch and scar the Earth

there is a certain dignity


in San Francisco we walk along the beach at night, near the Cliff House
we walk to the sound of the waves, the sound of the Earth chanting its joys
our feet are bare and relish the comfort of cool sand

the air is clear and cold and easy to breathe, tasting of salt and smelling of sea life ~
here is a pristine moment of peace

i want to bequeath this peace to you, to everyone,
as though it were a cherished heirloom
it is really a birthright

i want to plunge into the waters and gather the ocean in my cupped hands, to offer it to you as sacramental wine

i want to form seaweed into garlands for all of us to wear, to hang over our hearts, a symbol of affection

i want to collect pine cones from the trees that congregate along the coast and feed them to the children to remind them to cherish this Earth and all its creatures, themselves included, and to say …

do not make war in your heart or upon your mother’s body

This is my post for The Bardo Group’s Valentine’s Day event: Bloggers in Planet Love. It is an older piece that I’ve have rewritten for this occasion. Please join us HERE and share the url to a post of yours that expresses your love of the Earth and nature or your concerns about the environment.

© 2013, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved
Photo credit ~ BrokenInaglory via Wikipedia under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported

CALLING ALL BLOGGERS, a reminder about our invitation …

Rainforest_Fatu_HivaPLEASE JOIN US: Beginning at  7 p.m. PST this evening, we are celebrating Valentine’s Day with love – not the love of and for another person – but our love for our mother planet ….

WE INVITE ALL writers, poets, artists, photographers, musicians and other creatives to join us at The Bardo Group for our Valentine’s Day event, BLOGGERS IN PLANET LOVE. Link in your work that shares your appreciation for the beauty of nature or your concern for environmental issues. You can share the url to your post via Mister Linky, which will stay up for seventy-two hours. Corina Ravenscraft (DragonDreams) hosts. I’ll visit sites and comment. We hope you will also visit others and comment on their work, lending support and encouragement and making connection.

If tonight is date-night for you, remember that you do have seventy-two hours to link your work in. It doesn’t have to be a new or recent piece, just something in the spirit of the event, something that expresses your love of our planet.

See you there. Meanwhile, HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY! :-)

Photo credit ~ Tropical Rainforest, Fatu Hiva Island, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia by Benutzerseite: Makemake via German language Wikipedia under CC A-SA 3.0 Unported license.

POETRY … filling the cracks with gold … growing strong in the broken places


“When the Japanese mend broken objects, they aggrandize the damage by filling the cracks with gold. They believe that when something’s suffered damage and has a history, it becomes more beautiful.” Billie Mobayed, British woman living in Dubai, Director, Life Model Management

Would we feel compelled to ply our art – poetry or other forms of creative expression – if we were whole, if we were not wounded soldiers? Do we write out of our broken places? Smarter folks than me have pondered and pontificated on this, but surely we do sometimes create to heal, filling in the cracks in our psyches with poetic gold.

This came home to me when I noticed that the quotes I put up on my FaceBook page that seem to resonate most* with people are the ones that point to a sense of not fitting in, of feeling alienated, of being a loner …

“Blessed are the weird people – poets, misfits, writers,mystics, painters, troubadours – for they teach us to see the world through different eyes.” Jacob Norby, American inspirational writer and entrepreneur


“Almost every truly creative being is alienated and expatriated in his own country.” Lawrence Ferlinghetti (b.1919), American poet, painter, activist, and co-founder of City Lights Booksellers and Publishers/SF, CA


“The Writer”

On the cold sea, empty of life
A solitary craft

Edward Abbey (1927-1989), novelist, essayist and environmental advocate from “Earth Apples: The Poetry of Edward Abbey,” which is his the only poetry collection – the poems gathered and published posthumously by David Peterson


I noticed as well that this Blake quote and short poem of mine from a March 2011 post also resonated …

“Madmen I have been called Fool they called Thee
I wonder which they Envy Thee or Me”
English Encouragement of Art by William Blake (1757 – 1827), English poet, printer, artist, luminary

It speaks to them like an old-growth forest
whispering into a wise and willing ear.
Or perhaps its cellular memory or ancestors
not silenced by death at all but having their
say along some thread of DNA by which
chaos becomes story becomes chaos again.
Or might it be some rarely seen insanity.
Check the DSM*, where you’ll find it laid out
grossly defined and oddly diminishing.
No naming stops its quiet flow, slow and
cool in a swift and overheated world.

*DSM Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders

- Jamie Dedes


Perhaps we sometimes do write out of our broken places, but I believe that just as often we write to understand and to live more fully and that mostly we write out of our sacred space.

These are the two quotes that resonate most for me:

“The artist is not a person endowed with free will who seeks his own ends, but one who allows art to realize its supreme purpose through him.” Carl Jung (1875-1961), Swiss psychiatrist, psychotherapist and founder of analytical psychology.


“What art offers is space – a certain breathing room for the spirit.” John Updike (1932-2009), American novelist, poet, short story writer, art and literary critic


The  meaning in our craftiness and its use and impetus may be viewed in many ways; but it would seem that whatever the view, we are always filling the cracks with gold. That is how we – and the world with us – heal and understand.  It is how we, as Hemingway wrote of one of his characters, “grow strong in broken places.”

* with a Facebook page, just as with a blog, the owner can see how many people actually visit a post, though these statistics are not visible to readers.

©2013, essay/poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved, licensing for online publications is nonnegotiable and requires permission, attribution, link to this site, my copyright, no modification, noncommercial only and does not imply permission to include the work in the site’s printed collections or anthologies.
Photo credit ~ original source unknown. If it is yours, please let me know and I’ll credit you or take it down as you please.

. . . and thus we begin another week . . .