After graduation, after a divorce, after an election
Prayer For A Divided Nation
Prayers for the listeners of NPR and the listeners of Fox News, / For the followers of Rachel Maddow and the followers of Rush Limbaugh. / May they open their hearts, may they open their minds, / May they find ways to be in community and to repair the nation.
I have always looked on disobedience toward the oppressive as the only way to use the miracle of having been born. I have always looked on the silence of those who do not react or who indeed applaud as the real death of a woman or a man.
Defending The Roof Of The World
Jamyang Norbu’s Lifelong Quest For Tibetan Independence
The Chinese empire is fragile, because it is built upon oppression. . . . If the oppression is too great, it may all come apart. If the empire were to break up, I think democracy might be possible in the smaller entities that would remain. . . . This is where Tibetans must keep up the fight and prepare for the long haul. We can prevail if we are able to keep our culture intact.
In the video he is an energetic storyteller relating episodes of great violence in a can-you-believe-it tone better suited to recounting a kooky incident out running errands. There is also the Yiddish tide of his syntax, which deposits nouns in unexpected places, like a rocking chair found sitting on the roof of a toolshed after a flood.
I would like to give you a metaphor that describes what it’s like to potentially pass on to one’s children a pathogenic variant that will possibly go on to kill them, but everything I am coming up with is histrionic.
What I Lived For
When I was young, I lived for what I thought of as “lyrical moments,” when the details of life were suddenly heightened and approached the transcendent. . . . Of course, if you live long enough, you start thinking more and more not about the lyrical but rather about time. . . . I am living to stay alive.
City Bus, Country Bus
In a bus, bumping elbows with messy humanity, I create memories that will bolster me for life. Our lives, as the author of Job reminds us, are short and full of trouble. The best we can do is connect, share a smile over this gift of existence.
The Last Himalayan Kingdom
Bhutan is the final outpost of the rapidly disappearing Tantric Buddhist culture that once guarded the Roof of the World. Tibet, Ladakh, Mustang, and Sikkim have all fallen to conquest or cultural and economic colonialism, while Bhutan — never conquered, never colonized — remains the last jewel in Buddhism’s Himalayan crown.
I don’t know if other people feel like there’s a life / running alongside their so-called real life like an / access road runs alongside the main highway.
Wanting Things To Be Different
A relapse of Lyme disease: / fever and chills, flickers of pain. / I want to sleep all the time, and my arms ache. / I lie on the steel grate that juts over the stream.