The World: Even if previously careless, when one later stops being careless, such a person illuminates the world, like the moon breaking away from a cloud. Dhammapada 13.172
The demolition of the Baldoni house began today. At seven in the morning, the crew arrived. First, they cut down the two pines that flanked the front door. The air smelled of them all morning, better than the candle by the bed I burn these cool nights. More trees followed. The front door removed and, sledgehammers in hand, three men entered to battle plaster, wood, and metal.
Grim work, killing a house.
Later, after workers left for the day, I thought back on those who had lived in that old, honest house. First I recalled an aging Italian immigrant, landlord to a young couple. Childless, he left the house to them in his will. That couple, the Baldonis, came from a family of local accordion makers. They raised children in that house, planted fine old red roses, and the twin front pines. Landlords then themselves, they let to a Vietnam vet, an amateur actor. Upstairs lived an assistant soccer coach and his lonely girlfriend, who departed separately. Then followed a long and blurry succession of engineering students, recent graduates, and office workers. Sold to its present owner, a bank, the house was vacant for a few years.
An old brick place I have called neighbor since moving here blinks once, twice.
Its doorless front entry now gapes, wide and toothless. Windows have been wrenched out for resale or refuse. I am watching its decomposition over days.
It's a noisy process, this blinding, muting, gutting, shunting the domestic into the ground.
Evil: If a person does good, let them keep on doing it. Let them create an inclination to it. The accumulation of good means happiness. 9.118 Dhammapada
Full sleep changes mornings.
I awake without an ache,
mind clear, hear, as always, birds.
children play in a park,
a mouse runs for tall grass
shrugged off by trees
these are moments from yesterday's class
their own ideas about
listen, look, do,
It may be that what we want
and what we need
are glitched into obscurity
by the recurrent insecurities
of our characters.
Am I good enough?
Am I a failure?
These are useless preoccupations,
Sometimes in walking and watching a fine day unfold, I stumble.
Tests of physical coordination perplex me.
Last night I sat in a dark room, listening to the wind
run through the studio,
pushing against paper paintings,
passing through the glue bottles,
fussing over tabletops.
Later, I made ink from Japanese charcoal.
Crushing tree with a stone against glass, I passed water and ash through a cloth,
stirring in white vinegar,
drop by drop.
The ink looked thin, malnourished, a flop.
Today the grey of yesterday turns black,
back to char, usable if a little gritty.
The cardinals, male, have been singing quite a lot this morning.
One sweet fellow accompanies snare-brushed sounds
found around the intersection at the bottom of the hill.
It's a good day for a song,
with long cooler hours ahead.
a rabbit runs
to bone and fur
near the plum
two goldfinches spar
are lit by the late sun
one more daylily
opening in the cool morning air
at the edge