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#1741 - Friday, March 19, 2004

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  • Gloria Lee
    .. .. .. #1741 - Friday, March 19, 2004 - Editor: Gloria dancing: the fox treads among the pale narcissi in garden moonlight ~ Buson, Japanese 1716 - 84 Every
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      #1741 - Friday, March 19, 2004 - Editor: Gloria
       
      dancing: the fox treads
        among the pale
        narcissi
      in garden moonlight

           ~ Buson, Japanese 1716 - 84

        

      "Every creature is a word of God."
      ~ Meister Eckhart
       
       
      St. Francis of Assisi,
      lover of all creation,
      patron saint of animals
      and the environment
       
       
      "But ask now the Beasts,
      And they shall teach thee;
      And the Fowls of the air,
      And they shall teach thee,
      Or speak to the Earth,
      And it shall teach thee."(Job 12:7-8)

      "What is man without the beast? If all the great beasts were gone, men would die from great loneliness of the spirit. For whatever happens to the beast soon happens to man."
      - Chief Seattle

       In the beginning of all things, wisdom and knowledge were with the animals; for Tirawa, the One Above, did not speak directly to man. He sent certain animals to tell men that he showed himself through the beasts, and that from them, and from the stars and the sun and the moon, man should learn. Tirawa spoke to man through his works.

      - Chief Letakots-Lesa of the Pawnee tribe


      startled into life like fire

      in grievous deity my cat
      walks around
      he walks around and around
      with
      electric tail and
      push-button
      eyes

      he is
      alive and
      plush and
      final as a plum tree

      neither of us understands
      cathedrals or
      the man outside
      watering his
      lawn

      if I were all the man
      that he is
      cat--
      if there were men
      like this
      the world could
      begin

      he leaps up on the couch
      and walks through
      porticoes of my
      admiration.
       
       ~ Charles Bukowski
      from Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame
       

       
       
       

      Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats
      by T.S. Eliot

      The Old Gumbie Cat

      I have a Gumbie Cat in mind, her name is Jennyanydots;
      Her coat is of the tabby kind, with tiger stripes and leopard spots.
      All day she sits upon the stair or on the steps or on the mat;
      She sits and sits and sits and sits--and that's what makes a Gumbie Cat!

      send a free Practical Cats card But when the day's hustle and bustle is done,
      Then the Gumbie Cat's work is but hardly begun.
      And when all the family's in bed and asleep,
      She tucks up her skirts to the basement to creep.
      She is deeply concerned with the ways of the mice--
      Their behaviour's not good and their manners not nice;
      So when she has got them lined up on the matting,
      She teachs them music, crocheting and tatting.

      I have a Gumbie Cat in mind, her name is Jennyanydots;
      Her equal would be hard to find, she likes the warm and sunny spots.
      All day she sits beside the hearth or on the bed or on my hat:
      She sits and sits and sits and sits--and that's what makes a Gumbie Cat!

      But when the day's hustle and bustle is done,
      Then the Gumbie Cat's work is but hardly begun.
      As she finds that the mice will not ever keep quiet,
      She is sure it is due to irregular diet;
      And believing that nothing is done without trying,
      She sets right to work with her baking and frying.
      She makes them a mouse--cake of bread and dried peas,
      And a beautiful fry of lean bacon and cheese.

      I have a Gumbie Cat in mind, her name is Jennyanydots;
      The curtain-cord she likes to wind, and tie it into sailor-knots.
      She sits upon the window-sill, or anything that's smooth and flat:
      She sits and sits and sits and sits--
      and that's what makes a Gumbie Cat!

      But when the day's hustle and bustle is done,
      Then the Gumbie Cat's work is but hardly begun.
      She thinks that the cockroaches just need employment
      To prevent them from idle and wanton destroyment.
      So she's formed, from that lot of disorderly louts,
      A troop of well-disciplined helpful boy-scouts,
      With a purpose in life and a good deed to do--
      And she's even created a Beetles' Tattoo.

      So for Old Gumbie Cats let us now give three cheers--
      On whom well-ordered households depend, it appears.

       
      Entire collection of cat poems available at above link,
      with some illustrations by Edward Gorey.
       

       
      Edward Gorey 
      The entire ABC book of illustrations is online at:
       
       
      and http://www.wishville.co.uk/gorey/c.htm  one at a time for slower dl's
       

      B is for Basil assaulted by bears.

      a bio/story/interview: http://dir.salon.com/people/bc/2000/02/15/gorey/index.html?pn=1

      He seems to delight in engaging his interviewers with the unspeakable horrors of his life. For example, here he is in 1992, talking to the Boston Globe: "I'm suffering from bronchitis at the moment. Psychosomatic bronchitis, I'm sure. But nevertheless, it's bronchitis. Oh it's all too much, too grim, too lovely, too -- how should I put this? It's general chaos."


      If a dog was the teacher

      If a dog was the teacher you would learn stuff like:
      When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.

      Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.

      Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure
      ecstasy.

      When it's in your best interest, practice obedience.

      Let others know when they've invaded your territory.

      Take naps.

      Stretch before rising.

      Run, romp, and play daily.

      Thrive on attention and let people touch you.

      Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.

      On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.

      On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.

      When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.

      No matter how often you're scolded, don't buy into the guilt thing and
      pout...run right back and make friends.

      Delight in the simple joy of a long walk

      Eat with gusto and enthusiasm. Stop when you have had enough.

      Be loyal. Never pretend to be something you're not.

      If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.

      When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle
      them gently.


       "The greatness of a nation," said Mahatma Gandhi, "can be judged by the way its animals are treated."


      Ben Hassine ~ Awakened Awareness
       

      Prayer for Peace 

      Pray to whoever you kneel down to:
      Jesus nailed to his wooden or marble or plastic cross,
      his suffering face bent to kiss you,
      Buddha still under the Bo tree in scorching heat,
      Yahweh, Allah, raise your arms to Mary
      that she may lay her palm on our brows,
      to Shekinhah, Queen of Heaven and Earth,
      to Inanna in her stripped descent.

      Hawk or Wolf, or the Great Whale, Record Keeper
      of time before, time now, time ahead, pray. Bow down
      to terriers and shepherds and siamese cats.
      Fields of artichokes and elegant strawberries.

      Pray to the bus driver who takes you to work,
      pray on the bus, pray for everyone riding that bus
      and for everyone riding buses all over the world.
      If you haven't been on a bus in a long time,
      climb the few steps, drop some silver, and pray.

      Waiting in line for the movies, for the ATM,
      for your latté and croissant, offer your plea.
      Make your eating and drinking a supplication.
      Make your slicing of carrots a holy act,
      each translucent layer of the onion, a deeper prayer.

      Make the brushing of your hair
      a prayer, every strand its own voice,
      singing in the choir on your head.
      As you wash your face, the water slipping
      through your fingers, a prayer: Water,
      softest thing on earth, gentleness
      that wears away rock.

      Making love, of course, is already a prayer.
      Skin and open mouths worshipping that skin,
      the fragile case we are poured into,
      each caress a season of peace.

      If you're hungry, pray. If you're tired.
      Pray to Gandhi and Dorothy Day.
      Shakespeare. Sappho. Sojourner Truth.
      Pray to the angels and the ghost of your grandfather.

      When you walk to your car, to the mailbox,
      to the video store, let each step
      be a prayer that we all keep our legs,
      that we do not blow off anyone else's legs.
      Or crush their skulls.
      And if you are riding on a bicycle
      or a skateboard, in a wheel chair, each revolution
      of the wheels a prayer that as the earth revolves
      we will do less harm, less harm, less harm.

      And as you work, typing with a new manicure,
      a tiny palm tree painted on one pearlescent nail
      or delivering soda or drawing good blood
      into rubber-capped vials, writing on a blackboard
      with yellow chalk, twirling pizzas, pray for peace.

      With each breath in, take in the faith of those
      who have believed when belief seemed foolish,
      who persevered. With each breath out, cherish.

      Pull weeds for peace, turn over in your sleep for peace,
      feed the birds for peace, each shiny seed
      that spills onto the earth, another second of peace.
      Wash your dishes, call your mother, drink wine..

      Shovel leaves or snow or trash from your sidewalk.
      Make a path. Fold a photo of a dead child
      around your VISA card. Gnaw your crust
      of prayer, scoop your prayer water from the gutter.
      Mumble along like a crazy person, stumbling
      your prayer through the streets.

      Ellen Bass (Read more of her poems at www.ellenbass.com)


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