Tag Archives: Eyes

Just A Little (day 2073)

It’s days like these
Rolled over, stuffed in
Left sleeping
With tired eyes
Lost on a distant horizon
A breath, heavy
Somewhere between asthma
And an eagle’s scream
Washed in the lapping ocean
And swept away
By the wind
Leaving heavy drops
Crawling down my cheek
And humming a slow song
That’re maybe
Just a little sad.

Camojawa Longhook (day 2070)

I am sorry kind gentleelk
I have never been to the Rivers Pass
Though I have heard from friends
That the water there
Is exceptionally clear
I once had an Uncle
Who would go every year
For what he would call
Elaksation Elkscursions
Mother would roll her eyes
Whenever he would say this
I would ask him what that meant
And mother would tell him
Not to fill my head with such nonsense.

Watercolour Elk by Ned Tobin

Moon at Midnight – Part XXXXXXXIII (day 2047)

(part XXXXXXXII)

I surprised myself at how passionate I became
And took Willow to bed
We lay there, forehead to forehead
Sharing our hearts and souls
Through our eyes, our breath
Our souls entwined like our very essences
A mixture of meaning and questions
Desire and passion
A giving and taking and listening and sharing
One that we spoke in ten thousand languages
When she kissed me I was at once a victim
Then an accomplice
Then I was the fever incomprehensible
And then just as quickly
Transformed back into the listener.

I experienced an epiphany that night
That I never really truly felt before
And that was the feeling of One
That my thoughts
Were just as relevant as Willow’s thoughts
That she had mine and I had hers
And that we were both at the same time
Quite on opposite sides of the same breath
Her ebb was my flow
But our build was the same
I felt it as I held her
And she moved with me and against me
We began glowing together
I experienced a union
Then stepped back and observed the separation
I learned the experience of true love
Fully loving
Which was both giving and taking
At the same time
Both nothing and everything
Both silence and screaming
Like I said, epiphany.

That night I bowed down to the deep connection
I felt and experienced so intimately with Willow
I thanked my fingers for finding me so
I thanked my breath for filling me so
I thanked my eyes for focusing me so
I thanked my heart for fueling me so
I thanked my knees for bending me so
I thanked Willow, deeply, powerfully
With words that meant ten thousand things
With embraces that held ten thousand meanings
With tears that sprung ten thousand rivers
With motion that turned ten thousand days
Past moons that shone at midnight.

// end

Moon at Midnight – Part XXI (day 1995)

part XX

At first it was hard to communicate with Willow
But we were inseparable
And we learned each other’s words
That helped us communicate
And what we lacked in spoken word
We made up for in body language
I hadn’t known many women in my time,
More familiar with an axe and squirrels,
But I learned Willow every way I could.

I learned how she hummed almost inaudibly
Before she woke me up
Dancing her fingers lightly over my sleeping body
As if they were sunlight
Warming my mind to the day;
I learned how her eyes looked shocked and innocent
When she couldn’t understand the words
I would excitedly share with her;
I learned her various routines
That announced each changing rhythm of the day;
I learned how much of a teacher
She was to Lily
Taking every moment she could to share
Her wisdom to her only child
With just the right enough patience
Matched with enough urgency
To encourage the blossoming child
To remember the things she must to survive.

I learned how she played with me
And laughed at my seriousness
She would push me to delay
In spots I hadn’t noticed in my hurry
Instantly draining whatever burden
I had riding about my shoulders
I learned her mischievous smile
When she would want me as her lover
And how she would lose all control
As she leaned her head back to my caress
Eager to remain entwined
Lost in the clutches of love.

Lily’s eyes would always grow larger
When she observed moments of our love
I knew that her adolescent crush
Wouldn’t let her sleep at night,
When Willow and I would share our passion
She seemed happier
Clearly part of her mothers spirit
That always sought to see happiness
In those around her
She would help as we learned to communicate as a family
Each playing a guessing game
That we became very accurate at
The more we learned each others’ rhythms.

part XXII

Moon at Midnight – Part XIX (day 1993)

(part XVIII)

I awoke early with Moon Cow
To ask him if I could take his horse
I told him I was going
To go to see Amy & Frank
See how they were setting into autumn
I had hardly been able to sleep
My mind was racing and ignited
And I definitely didn’t want to
Step on any feet in my new family
How could I know?
I only had vague introduction to their culture
And could only have my own reference
With the culture I was brought up in
I wasn’t naive enough to think
I knew how to fit in just yet,
Accepted as I was.

I hoped spending the day with Amy, Frank, and Clarinet
Would answer many questions for me
Being with them filled me with so much gratitude
So much love and respect for the family unit
But this was different
Than family life of the Blackfoot
Would Willow and Lily homestead with me?
How far ahead of myself I had gotten.

They could tell I had something troubling me
Amy said: “Joe, I think the full moon is on your mind.”
I kind of looked at her surprised
Using the moonlight last night talking to Willow
I had only noticed it but not taken much account
She was entirely right
My mind was in the moon
And with the birds, and bees,
And coyotes howling in the night.

So Frank and me cut wood
And Amy made us sandwiches
And all four of us drank fresh milk
And enjoyed the early afternoon sun together
I learned that Amy was pregnant with their second
At the same time Clarinet learned
She was startled with the news
Playing as she was with a doll on the patio,
She just sat there with her big eyes
Looking at her mother
Probably as many thoughts going through her brain
As I had inside of mine.

I left with enough time
To return by daylight
Trying not to rush myself home
For I knew that I would be expected
But still so many thoughts going through my mind
Before getting home
I stopped at one of the bluffs with a view
Of the entire valley basin
And watched the sun set
With glorious reds and purples and oranges
That gave me every answer
I had ever asked before.

day XX

Moon at Midnight – Part XIII (day 1987)

(part XII)

I could feel them before I saw them
When you walk through the forest
As much as I do
You know when something is a bit off
You look around searching for what it is
But keep walking as If nothing is wrong
As if you don’t suspect a thing
And don’t want it, whatever it is,
To know you’re on to it
It’s during these few steps
That you grow eyes on every part of your body
Listening and sensing and feeling and seeing
I always hope that whatever it is
Sees me and gets scared off
Because you know whatever it is
Means business if it doesn’t.

I put my palms to the front of me, open,
And stayed my path
But before to long I was forced to stop
By a native man standing in front of me
He had yellow paint across his eyes
And dots in red everywhere else
Yellow lines covering exposed skin on his body
His gun, resting on the ground
Was taller then him
I knew if push came to shove
I would be quicker then him at getting my gun
But I could see he’d be quicker with his knife.

As I came near I began to see
More and more of his brothers
Floating in and out of my vision
Playing havoc with my mind
There was no point in resisting
So I slowly pulled from my pocket
A large piece of moose meat
Amy and Frank had given me
And bowed before him with it in my hand, raised
He stood there without saying a word
Me bowed in front of him
For several minutes
Until finally he took the offering and ate it
And I stood up looking him in the eye
He said: “Frank. Amy.” and smiled
And patted me on the shoulder
I guess he knew the special flavor
They put on their jerky,
It was unique I had already admitted.

He pointed at me, and I said: Joe
With this he stopped dead in his animation
And stared directly into my soul
I saw him lose sight with far away eyes
And a vision come over him
Before I knew what was happening we were surrounded.

I had no choice in the matter and was led back to their camp
What hurry was I in?
They were friendly and had offered
To carry some of my things
Had offered me a horse
But I had said no
And their fast pace was slowed
To accommodate my slower, heavier footsteps
The trail was clearly used
And not hard to follow
Though we were walking south for three hours
I came to learn through one of the men
A bit about who I was with.

part XIV

Moon at Midnight – Part I (day 1975)

There was no moon at midnight
And my road was clambering on
I saw what appeared to be shadows
But from what direction I could not see the source
Nor could I understand their movement
For my breath was beating strongly
Inside my mind that couldn’t sit still.

They say whenever you’re lonely
To hug a tree in the woods,
That everything will be better
Once you listen to the wind through leaves.
But my footsteps weren’t taking me there
My trees were full of eyes
That growled when I got too close
My fire had died down to a whisper
Which danced away upon every breath
That beat so wildly inside.

I tried turning my back to the fire
So I could let my eyes adjust to darkness
Cold dampness swept into my chest
That left my fingers clinching at the dirt
I sat cross-legged on ash
That was surely trying to make it’s way
Up the inside of my leg
Like slowly crawling worms
With no direction home.
My fingers felt like dust
Long gone into a night with no end.

Slowly my eyes began to make out a hue of indigo
Through the trees that crept ever closer
With a faint scent of a silhouette
That began to sing me a song
Reminding me of Joan Baez singing acapella
Which always led me to Bob Dylan
And one of his nearly alarming harmonica solos.
Stars began to blink at me
Through gusting fog that sped
As fast as the dying harmonica sounds.

I could begin to see markings
Upon the bark of the nearest Douglas Fir trees
Bark so thick that my hands impulsively
Rubbed each other
Acutely feeling dusty skin on the back of my hands
As life began to seep back into them,
Shocked one too many times
From the dark night that lay behind.

I pulled my wool blanket closer
Remembering I am a warrior
I am made of two hard feet
That carry me on through a winding
Needle covered path
Weaving past lagoons and over boulders
Over roots and upon grass
Sometimes lost and always home
And rusty feathers settled beside me
Wishing me goodnight, so I fell asleep.

part II

20160418-morel-hunting-port-renfrew-bc-canada-ned-tobin-19

Sweater I Used to Love (day 1953)

There are sweaters I used to love
Around every worn corner I bump,
Loose photographs falling out of
Grandma’s old favorite books
That wrinkle in my hands
Which don’t look the same
They used to look to me
When I stare back at light blue eyes
From behind sweaters I used to love
And a red geranium in my hand.

Sweater I Used To Love by Ned Tobin

Path (day 1945)

Every breath that I hold me to take
How it is my strength, oh strength,
That lifts me to the divine
For watching is exposed my soul
Walking the path I only know how

Say that you’re calling out loud
How it is my strength, my strength,
My ears are bound tight
To megaphones singing Lord’s prayer
Walking the path I only know how

Can sunshine ever know it’s truth
How it is my strength, oh strength,
And my wide eyes undoing my load
A burden so many shall run
Walking the path I only know how

Down Turned Reverberations (day 1912)

You know, it’s ok.

It doesn’t matter that the sky seems to fall when you stretch your eyes wide at the beginning of a new day. It doesn’t matter that the tangle in your heart matches the tangle of your long, curly, brown hair drooping about your itchy nose as you fling from side to side with a worn out cactus shirt reaching down to the same legs you rest your morning coffee on.

I’ve found a reason that doesn’t rely on these silly momentary things. I’ve found the silk road, pock marked by moths with an unsettling history that left a lot of sad pages in the brown covered diary I’ve never re-read. I’ve begun to maneuver this silk pressing just as I would walking through busy streets or desert, dry mouthed and heart fleeting as beats reverberate off of every single thought.

It’s ok.

It’s a revolution that cannot get taken away, it’s the dull side of a newly sharpened axe. How many rows have you planted to become the star lit sky we all look up to; arms are better for hugging then the cold glass walls modern giants embed their soldiers within.

You’re not the only one with down turned memories of what we could never see, never hear, never even share from the distance we watch each other from – but our morning smells seem to remind us of nothing but the closeness we have; but evening silence is a feeling we so easily forgive.

It’s ok, and I’m never really very far.

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