Three short selections….

Siwashing It Out Once in Suislaw Forest

I slept under                        rhododendron
All night                                blossoms fell                            
Shivering on a                      sheet of cardboard
Feet stuck                            in my pack
Hands deep                          in my pockets
Barely able                           to sleep
I remembered when we    were in school
Sleeping together                in a big warm bed
We were                               the youngest lovers
When we broke up             we were still nineteen
Now our friends                  are married
You teach school                 back East
I don’t mind                         living this way
Green hills                           the long blue ocean
But sometimes                   sleeping in the open
I think back                        when I had you.


I always miss you–
last fall, back from the mountains
you’d left San Francisco
now I’m going north again
as you go south.

I sit by a fire at hte ocean.
How many times I’ve hitchhiked away;
the same pack upon my back.

Rain patters on the rhododendron
Clouds sweep in from the sea over the sand dunes
and stoopt lodgepole pines.

Thinking of the years since we parted.
Last week I dreamed of you–
buying a bag of groceries
for Hatch.

From Gary Snyder’s collection “From the Back Country” 1968.       

When Will I be home?
I don’t know.
In the mountains,
In the rainy night,
The Autumn lake is flooded.
Someday we will be back together again.
We will sit in the candlelight
By the west window,
And I will tell you how I
Remembered you
Tonight on the stormy mountain.

Li Shang Yin