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This poem and others are available in my books, Nothing Works: Meditations on Aikido, Buddhism, the Tao, Zen, and other inconsequential things....and, Nothing Special, and Nothing Matters..., available thru Amazon.com, in print and Kindle editions and Barnes & Noble websites.....Also available as an e-book via Smashwords.com. Try this link: www.nothing-works.com for the full array of options.
The bell rang out
Piercing and clear
We all bowed
Sensei turned and faced us
Sitting in a line facing him
We all bowed again
We bow a lot in the dojo
We warmed up, then
Picked a partner, and
You guessed it, bowed
Practice, practice, practice....
The dojo is a timeless place
Gi and hakama
Sweat and no-time
All become one
Conscious breathing itself stops
But the flow is always there
Deep inside, I bow to the flow
Sometimes, I think
It bows back...
In the dojo
We bow a lot
As the story goes:
Sitting under a Bohdi tree
The Buddha was approached
And asked who he was: I am he who woke up
Responded the Buddha
Today, would he be accused
Of being woke? That is:
Well informed, up-to-date
Alert to racial or social
Discrimination and injustice
To being aware…
Or, as William Melvin Kelly
So succinctly put it
Way back in 1962: If you're woke, you dig it
Do it now!
Oh, too late….
Now, damn it!
Again, now slips on by Now, a slippery concept
A slippery artifact Now is always moving
As is consciousness, too
We are slow to keep up
Always lagging behind
The now of non-thought is
The only way to experience it
Now, now, now, now….
No past, no future
Approaching via a halo orbit
From Valhalla Station is relatively easy
Still, taking off and landing
Are always the worst times
Fortunately, it's mostly automated
Alba Station will be a fun change
The running joke is that their hakama
Should be tartan instead of black
But, no one underestimates their
Aikido and weapons work
Especially since they have added
A Claymore to their weapons practice
Interesting, but no worse as when the
New America Station added baseball bats
(Wooden, of course) to their weapons practice
Purists think aikido should not be changed
From the way of the Founder's practice
But what is that, anyway? Others think
That arbitrarily freezing a tradition at any
Particular stage stifles and smothers it
It can become a dead thing and have the
Insidious power to deaden its practitioners
What is more innovative than aikido in space!
The Mutuality of the L-5 and L-4
Republics are nothing if not innovative