A Scattering of Koans That Are Not

I am held together by the curvature of the earth.

Country is a hangnail. Peeled back, red and raw, history widens it to an exit wound.

Can we please talk about cloudless portions of the sky in terms of kite gatherers?

There’s a whale in a pail in the well—that is how small the thought of freedom is.

There’s a snail that’s on sale that won’t sell—that is how desperately slow wealth accumulates.

The white-bellied cicada on its back could have had a good life, but I’ll never know.

I know the turkey vulture flapping circles on the ramp is suffering

and there’s no place to pull over and help.

I know the squirrel tail twitching on the shoulder of the back road is hurting

and there’s nothing I can do so why pull over and help.

Isn’t the point of all this to watch for as long as possible.

Some people have no hands and use them more than people with hands.

If you lack a sense you will use it more than those who do not lack.

You can create a brand new sense that is a culmination of all

and it is gained in freefall above the planet at terminal velocity.

I promise nothing matters—I promise borders are imaginary enemies

and maps do not belong to us and cartographers mean well

but as with any religion the message gets manipulated

and what should be reverence is severance and stitches.


Published in Heavy Feather Review.