107 places

people in 107 countries have come to this blog : albania / algeria / argentina / armenia / aruba / australia / austria / bahrain / bangladesh / barbados / belarus / belgium / belize / bosnia and herzegovina / brazil / brunei / bulgaria / cambodia / canada / chile / china / colombia / croatia / cyprus / czech republic / denmark / ecuador / egypt / el salvador / england / fiji / finland / france / georgia / germany / ghana / greece / guatemala / honduras / hong kong / hungary / iceland / india / indonesia / iran / iraq / ireland / isle of man / israel / italy / japan / jordan / kazakhstan / kenya / korea / kuwait / latvia / lebanon / liberia / lithuania / luxembourg / macao / macedonia / malaysia / mauritius / mexico / moldova / mongolia / morocco / myanmar / nepal / netherlands / new zealand / nicaragua / nigeria / norway / pakistan / panama / peru / philippines / poland / portugal / puerto rico / qatar / romania / russia / saudi arabia / senegal / serbia / singapore / slovakia / slovenia / south africa / spain / sri lanka / sweden / switzerland / taiwan / thailand / trinidad and tobago / tunisia / turkey / ukraine / united arab emirates / united states of america / venezuela / vietnam

31 October 2011

glowing

Today, tonight, is Halloween, and last week, I gave some long glow-in-the-dark fingernails for a child to wear on a dark night. When I too was a child, my best costume was as a mummy, strips of white fabric circling my legs and arms, torso and head. Just the other evening, I was walking to my home in Hong Kong, and two girls wearing long black hats on the sidewalk gave me two marshmallow candies. All of us glowing.
Photo: A staircase, Hiroshima, Japan
Text: I also wish Tai Wah a glowing birthday, 94th

30 October 2011

the room

Tiny, the room feels more for interrogation than song.
Photo: Karaoke Room, 12 Oil Street, Northpoint
site of the former Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club
soon to be the site of the Arts Promotion Office

29 October 2011

seeing blue

I once wrote a poem
titled 'Seeing blue'
which begins:
Blue is everything we cannot touch.
Photo: Steps to a stage, Central, Hong Kong

28 October 2011

a caterpillar on my street

I saw a caterpillar on my street.
Caterpillar bulldozer, Rega 325.
And my thoughts go to Rachel Corrie
and to justice and peace, in Palestine
and everywhere, and every here.
Photo: Tai Hang, Hong Kong

27 October 2011

musical

I want to stack, unstack, play.
Photo: After a function, Central District, Hong Kong

26 October 2011

25 October 2011

one writer, another

I took this portrait of myself after watching
a film about the writer Hualing Nieh Engle.
Photo: On a pedestrian bridge over Waterloo Road, Kowloon Tong
Text: Hualing is a co-founder of the International Writing Program in Iowa, USA

24 October 2011

to begin again

Monday, Monday. Another week begins.
I trust this day. 
Photo: The beginning of a meal, Japan
Text: I think of The Mamas & the Papas

23 October 2011

I love them more


I heard Maurice Sendak the other day,
the author of 'Where the Wild Things Are'.
He said, 'I'm not unhappy. I cry a lot because
I miss people. They leave me
and I love them more.'
Photo: Honkawa schoolgrounds, a school in Hirsohima
Text: From an NPR interview with Maurice Sendak, 83, and in remembrance of my Uncle Philip (1929-2011)

22 October 2011

holding, keeping

Osip Mandelstam: 'the purpose of history is to keep time together'
Anna Akhmatova: 'more permanent than anything on earth is sadness, and more long-lived is the regal word.'
Photo: A temple floor, Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Text: From an essay by John Berger, 'That Which Is Held'

21 October 2011

breathing, inspiring

The word 'inspire' comes from 'breathe'
and taped on my computer at the office
is the word 'breathing'.
Photo: At a friend's studio, Masterton, New Zealand

20 October 2011

ici

I saw this in summertime.
Maybe a popsicle, not icicle.
Photo: Cornish, Maine

19 October 2011

editing, washing

I have some decisions to make.
Sometimes I feel a bit like this wad of cloth.
Maybe, to decide is to edit.
In Chinese, to edit is to wash.
Photo: Washcloth, New Zealand

18 October 2011

I hear a piano

Last night, Murray Perahia live in concert, in joy, in splendor, the ticket a gift from a friend.
Today, I am thinking of my uncle in Memphis, a man who tunes the piano, a man trying to live.
Photo: A church in Cornish, Maine

17 October 2011

world poverty day

Today is world poverty day, as designated by the UN. Maybe give something to yourself, and to people around you. I give these words:

As you are, so is the world
-ramana maharishi

The sandal tree – as if to prove how sweet to conquer hate by love – perfumes the axe that lays it low.
-tagore

It is only because of your love – only your love – that poor people will forgive you the bread you give them.
-st. vincent de paul

Peace is our work… To everyone, I say: do not be afraid to take a chance on peace, to teach peace… peace will be the last word of history.
-john paul II

I keep my ideals because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart…  I can feel the suffering of millions, and yet, if I look up into the heavens, I think that it will come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again.
-anne frank

The future must enter into you long before it happens.
-rainer maria rilke

I tell you, if one wants to be active, one must not be afraid of failures, one must not be afraid of making mistakes.  Many people think they will become good by doing no harm; that’s a lie… it leads to stagnation, to mediocrity.
-vincent van gogh

I still believe that standing up for the truth of god is the greatest thing in the world.  This is the end of life. The end of life is not to be happy… The end of life is to do the will of god – come what may.
-martin luther king, jr

The Sufis advise us to speak only after our words have managed to pass through three gates.
At the first gate, we ask ourselves, Are these words true?
At the second gate, Are they necessary?
At the last gate we ask, Are they kind?
-eknath easwaren

Photo: On a beach in New Zealand

15 October 2011

as gentle as

I once lived in a one-hundred-year home like this one, with clay tiles as roof, thick stone walls, a little wooden staircase to my mezzanine desk, and ancient plants.
Rain landing on clay is almost as gentle as on leaf.
Photo: Roof, Sheung Wo Hang, Hong Kong

14 October 2011

two

One leads to another.
Photo: At a restaurant, Wairarapa, New Zealand

12 October 2011

cool wood

If I lived here, I would sit on the cool wood
and take away the curtains, table
and the object on the sill.
Photo: Wairarapa, New Zealand

11 October 2011

occupy

My rent will soon go up about 20 percent.
The laundromat on my street will not renew their lease. Shall we occupy our street?
Photo: Rental payment record, Tsimshatsui

10 October 2011

rash, extreme, generous

In order to read poetry, Virginia Woolf writes
in 1926, one must be in a rash, an extreme,
a generous state of mind.
Photo: Plant life in the Philippines
Text: From the essay, On Being Ill

09 October 2011

make a reason

Make a reason to celebrate.
Photo: Opening of exhibition, Japan
Text: I celebrate xtn's birth and friendship.

08 October 2011

hand here

I like the touch of the hand. Here,
the handmade neck.
Photo: Shop window, Wairarapa, New Zealand

07 October 2011

low and open

I like sitting on the floor
and I like tables low too.
It all feels larger, roomier.
Our thoughts, our breath, more open.
Photo: Dining room table, World Friendship Center, Hiroshima

05 October 2011

shall be well

You will have pain and affliction, trouble and strain and doubt. But you shall not be overcome and all shall be well.
Yes, all shall be well, and all will be well, and thou shall see thyself that all manner of things shall be well.
Photo: Buddha on Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Text: Julian of Norwich

03 October 2011

thy neck

Once the folds of a neck.
Now something to be dusted.
Photo: A hunted animal's body in a trophy room, Maine

02 October 2011

tennis desk

I have loved ping pong, table tennis, and we have kept such a table ready in the basement. When I see this one outdoors, my love for sport and for word comes forward:
wouldn't the table make a great big desk?
Photo: Lantau Island