The Wave & The Wind

Rikuzentakata Ôfunato Kuji swept away

No trace they were ever there
Otsuchi Miyako Yamada
Sôma Namie Minamisôma Onagawa
Kesennuma Natori Ishinomaki gone,
The earth gave and the sea
Has taken away Banda Ache
Two hundred thirty thousand
Gone in the Indian Ocean wave.

I am thinking of Phuket on Boxing Day

The waters receding so fast
Fish were left flapping on the sand,
The boy drawn by hunger
Or a child’s fascination
Not knowing the danger
Walking out to catch a few–
Then the immense water-wall moving
He turns, runs–  is gone.

Some say the Lord taketh

But where were healing Jesus
Allah the Merciful
When countless cries went up,
Where were the thousand hands
Of listening Kannon,
in paradise where she was
Blissful in her Pure Land as if
Tsunami’s never happen?
Do the dead hear the whispered calls

On the kaze-no-denwa wind phone?

 

Rayn Roberts 2017

Kaze no Denwa, The Wind Phone

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Advice

I had my annual physical today and all was well.
The Doc. asked if I had any concerns, I said
“I need a strong pain killer for a broken heart.”
He laughed, but I said, “I’m serious.
Nothing but booze helps and that gives me a hangover.
Can’t you give me something for it?”
He said, “Look man, at sixty five
You’ve only just started a difficult walk
Down the senior path and you haven’t seen anything yet!
My advice is enjoy the scenery.”
I wanted to punch him, but his words hit me harder.
— Wasn’t it Harry Truman who said
“I never gave them hell. I just told them the truth
And created it for them.” Or words to that effect?

Say AHHHHHH
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What is There?

What is there in the end but forgiveness
And forgiving one’s self.
What is regret when we cannot go back
To change anything done?
We only move forward
To more change, the slow breakdown
Of the body, aging and death,
There is that, of course, but
The quicker one can do it the better:
Live so the need to forgive is less and less.
It is a gift we give, and when we can, is priceless.

 

tumblr_opi6ecpEKH1qde5xzo1_500Rayn Roberts 2017

After My Mom Died

For for Mary Leary

The cracked world strangely abstract
Flowers panic in the window box
Crows eat the petals of mourning
Unpeaceful Xanax morning,
I should meditate, but this is fine
Poetry calms the storms of afternoon until
A gathering of friends
SOMA Heads looking for a fix in my room
Invisible bandito on the balcony
Nicking my hash
He came to prop me up
Then took my stash, the bastard!

Later, a Las Vegas Cocktail Open Mic
Colorless as a dry heave
Jimmy Jazz is shouting in my head,
“Fuck you and you and you
if you call this is a poetry reading!
This is not a poetry reading!”
This bleeding stuck pig poetry
Banging on a toy-piano poetry
Just throw some glitter on
And slap it to your frig like a cute magnet.

Wait…   from of the heat of hell, genius often rises
And hey, it’s all about self-expression, isn’t it, well, isn’t it?

 

 

Open-Mic

Before The Typhoon

I am as well alone as not, still the boss’s tiny daughter
Takes my hand at work saying, “Don’t go home alone.
It’s not good to be alone.” I reassure her, “I’ll be alright.”
At home I’m fine and well, but I cannot turn a deaf ear

Small sounds fill the air, a child cries without comfort
A dog howls, will not be still, gears grumble, wheels go on
A drunk vomits in the street as hard rain begins in the dark–
Beyond fatigue, I tire of the world, old, new, alone or not

There’s as much suffering as ever and it cannot be said enough
We all have a part in it, I’m never at home with that, listen
A gust brings down a billboard, there are groans in thunder
Moans in a mountain landslide, floods, there are tears in things.

The wind carries the sobs of that child to every room in my house.

 

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Rayn Roberts
Jeju Island, Korea

The Ears of Seongjin Castle

In the last light of March, under cherry trees as large as the oak
Near the tomb of those lost
in the battle of Seongjin Castle, yet another tale
of the cruelty and kindness of men…

The Japanese hacked off the noses and ears of the dead
took them home, proof a battle won, souvenirs of a war.
The Koreans buried fathers and sons in a common grave and mourned.

Years later, a Buddhist monk went to Japan
Pleaded for the return of the remains–
Ten thousand ears heard him, ten thousand eyes saw him
On Heart of Love opened, Om Mani Padme Hum–

Japan relented and gave them back–
Under a large tree, in a snow of blossoms, the story teller, a Korean friend
Looked at me and said, “Only the oldest trees know the sorrow of the blossoms.

 

Rayn Roberts 2002

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Traditionally, Japanese warriors brought back the heads of enemies slain on the battlefield as proof of their deeds. Ear collection in lieu of heads became a feature of the second Korean invasion.[4]:p. 195 [10] Remuneration was paid to soldiers by their daimyō commanders based on the severed heads upon submission to collection stations, where inspectors meticulously counted, recorded, salted and packed the noses bound for Japan.[11][12] However, because of the number of civilians killed along with soldiers, and crowded conditions on the ships that transported troops, it was far easier to just bring back ears instead of whole heads.[10]

Japanese chroniclers on the second invading campaign mention that the ears hacked off the faces of the massacred were also of ordinary civilians[13] mostly in the provinces Gyeongsang (where Seongjin Fortress was located)  Jeolla, and Chungcheong.[2]:pp. 475–476 In the second invasion Hideyoshi’s orders were thus:  Mow down everyone universally, without discriminating between young and old, men and women, clergy and the laity—high ranking soldiers on the battlefield, that goes without saying, but also the hill folk, down to the poorest and meanest—and send the heads to Japan.  Many of the ears, noses and heads of the dead are now buried in Kyoto, Japan, but some were returned to Korea.  Mimizuka: Ear Tomb

Kuan Yin /  Avalokiteshvara in Tibetan, is the Bodhisattva of Great Compassion and is said to have ten thousand ears and eyes to hear and watch over the suffering people of the world.   Om Mani Padme Hum is a mantra associated with this Bodhisattva.

옴 마니 반메 훔

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Bedime Prayer

Bedtime Prayer

 
Soma, xanthan, vodka sweet
Now I lay me down to sleep
 
I pray that death will not come
That would be pretty dumb
 
To die alone without a friend
Would be a bitter wasted end.
 
But if I die before I wake
I did my best for fuck sake
 
I don’t know where I’m goin’
Make sure the gate is open
 
 
 
Photo: CIRCA 1940s – Zbigniew Stypulkowski, A Member Of A Polish …