SEEKING SIGNS

                            (in memory of my brother Richard Cook)             1a2a         3a           54

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MEMORIES’ SURPRISES, HARRIMAN STATE PARK, NY

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ARC OF STARS…NEW YEAR’S EVE

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CHRISTMAS 2017: HOMAGE TO A TREE

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CASTLE ROCK STATE PARK, CALIFORNIA

(in memory of Joseph Grassi)

Castle Rock

High above the town of Saratoga, California,
up winding Route 9, turn south at the Skyline
crest, you’ll come to Castle Rock State park,

where my husband Joe hiked for many years.
Once upon a time we went to what he called:
his “sacred place.” The last summery warmth

of the woods was retreating. Coolness was settling
in, since the sun was tilting south towards Mexico
these last weeks. Around a bend in the road

kids were playing hide & go seek. Rock-climbing
groups galore scaling several cliffs. Countless
trees losing leaves. Dirt and debris scattered by

unseen creatures burrowing in the brambles.
High above squirrels leaping in branches, carrying
cachets of seeds and nuts for hiding. Familiar with

the trail’s twists and turns, Joe led me to the side
of a trickling waterfall: “By December it’ll be
thriving!” Higher we went along a curving

path leading to ledge-like portico for a large
cave. “Sacred as a chapel,” said this former
priest. Animal drawings, hieroglyphics,

a sketch portraying a phoenix feeding her
young from her heart. A pair of doves calling
in the dark. Light shafts swirling. Tiny drips

of moisture into a small well. Shards forming
a nook resembling a tabernacle. Golden red maple
leaves by the entrance spun miniature rose

mandalas over our shoulders. A faint scent
of incense, crushed sage by our feet. At the back
a rectangular stone resembling an altar. Beeswax

stains on the four corners. An aire of perpetual
presences. Did we pray aloud, swaying beside
redwoods as if in a Sufi dance facing the blue

Pacific! Back at the car, darkness was dawning.
Moonrise over San Jose’s Mount Hamilton,
Silicon Valley lighting up Santa Clara, Los Gatos,

Campbell, Cupertino, Saratoga. Winter rains round
the corner. Perhaps an early spring filling the forests
with fresh flora and fauna, recurring revelations

of hope after the light’s been low and loss,
crushing. It’s then I’ll take the trail he taught me,
to that threshold ledge before my beloved’s sacred site.

At the Peak

Images from https://www.parks.ca.gov/

HOMELESS IN CALIFORNIA

Heading-grocery Homeless-Grocery Store

Homeless in CafeNCal Cafe

 
red chairs cafe poem

IN MEMORY OF JOSEPH A. GRASSI…

(1922-2010)


                            THE COURAGE TO BE
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INCARNATION MONASTERY

          BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA
with thanks to Thomas Matus OSB Cam

Incarnation M

There is nothing which exists separate from Me,
 Arjuna. The entire universe is suspended
From Me as my necklace of jewels.
—Krishna to Arjuna “The Bhagavad Gita



LAKE RONKONKOMA, LONG ISLAND

WP Lake Ronkonkama

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CONVENT LESSONS

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QUOTING RON HANSEN

"Carolyn Grassi's 'Heart and Soul' is fascinating in its fluent and affecting blend of memoir and poetry, reminiscence and sheer invention, loss, grief and homage. Adopting a persona at times, or imitating a seminal influence on her writing at other junctures, [Carolyn Grassi] has created a quilt of memories and reflections on a life's education—the journey we all hope to make from becoming to being, or from acting as disciples to representing ourselves and our art as apostles..."
Read the complete foreword by Ron Hansen in 'Heart and Soul' published by Patmos Press, San Francisco, CA.

Ron Hansen, author

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Carolyn Grassi

Ron Hansen and Jim Torrens

Blase Bonpane, Ph.D

Lit Prof at SCU