Category Archives: poetry

original poems by Janice Sandeen

Brightness Spectrum

The day seemed brighter than usual in the most uncanny of ways.

The creek could be heard flowing and the flies and bees buzz

was also heard more clearly than usual. But amidst all of these patterns,

there was something else fractured and marred beyond

any usual glimpse of what life could be or look like.

 

There was the stimulation of things unknown,

which is always there for the taking or playing with ~

but today it was more like the unknown of the unknown.

Unknowing squared. It’s not quite like a double negative.

Unknown and more unknown is just the unknown.

 

It may seem odd to ask, “what do we know

about the unknown?”–but it’s precisely that

kind of question that is needed at times.

 

The words tick on like seconds on a clock,

like bees returning to the hive,

like water flowing ever down, down, down.

 

The words themselves are sometimes the only clues

and today those clues are: brighter, fractured,

marred, stimulation, unknown, uncanny,

double negative, and even a few yet spoken.

 

If I could grind up these words to make a pigment

to paint with, these would be music more than color,

the music of thunder, the shudder of forces of nature

coming into contact and then departing or dispersing.

 

How could anything as broken as fractured stimulation

become the clue to some of the greatest mysteries of being?

How could something as uncanny as a double negative

serve a higher cause than the brightness of a day?

 

How fortunate to be inside the Rubik’s Cube of sound itself

such that even sound follows a brightness spectrum.

But there are days such as these.

 

Janice Sandeen ~ 26 March 2017

written while virtually “attending” the writing jam w/Daniel Ari

spoken at The Spoken Word Open Mic in Taos, NM @ SOMOS

Outlines

As I sit here it becomes clear

I need to create an outline

for a poem

that is ready to be written

 

Funny how a poem

can seem to need an outline,

to mark out everything

it could and would say

 

i) All That Is

ii) What now is becoming Known

iii) What is no longer necessary

iv) Reversals of figure/ground

 

Perhaps it is the space

between outline and poem

that I’m really interested in,

the visible reaches between

 

Wondering, will anyone else

see what I see there/here

as I map out the bridging

between seen and unseen?

 

Good thing I’m prepared for this step:

my new footwear is designed

for multidirectional levels of grounding

in body/mind/spirit and beyond

 

I have socks with holes in them,

but wait, these are black holes

and wormholes, as time disintegrates

& even temperature is refigured

 

Pants are no longer restrictive

nor all they were once worked up to be;

who wears the pants when domination

and control crumbles all around us?

 

Keep your shirt on (or not) but

find your colors amongst the

rainbow, as well as infrared

and ultra violet ~ all fluid light

 

Speaking of light, the naked eye

sees so much more than once upon a time,

marrying the inner eye & embarking

together, seeing expansion everywhere

 

The outline becomes omnidirectional

Just as time becomes No Time

Things are no longer what they seem

It is now easier than ever to Let Go

Tomorrow here in Taos, New Mexico, we will be having our January edition of The Spoken Word Open Mic Series. If you happen to be close enough to join us in person, please do!  🙂

screenshot-2017-01-05-13-35-21

 

inhabit inhabiting

I have been so

inhabited

with thoughts

about what

many others

are thinking and have put forth

that, in effect,

I have stopped

thinking.

 

As this

recognizing,

may I newly dawn,

as the sun does

when blanketing the ground with light,

as music

pervading this inner space

and beyond.

~

I am

content

to dwell

in and as

the cracks between

the world-as-we-know-it.

 

The gaps

are teeming with life

hardly once recognized.

 

I am

this life

and this life responds

within itself

as itself

and in concert

with itself,

even while teeming

as chaos.

 

Recipe for Reclamation

This recipe is as old as the ages are old
More ancient than the most ancient of beings, trees, creatures, or even fossils that still reside on this earth plane we take our physical nourishment from
Only, it is a new recipe now for what we are now, every evolutionary iteration that we have in our midst, at this time
We each might need to scour the threads, some very bare, some still shining sovereign, to discern those ancient traces
• 
That return each and every one of us to the most pristine truth of what we are
One recipe stirs within my dreamtime, a sacred housing of the rich multiplicity reaching b e y o n d  whatever amnesias once wracked my living essence down to the bone
I woke to this hunger, letting it crack me open, showing me the journey way to the most hidden of truths
• 
And yet something was needed to nourish me along this way
What recipe to draw from hard ground, the driest of remnants, grit and obscurity; what song?
The very least of these came in order to speak a new language, familiar, yet otherworldly from the deepest chasms that, somehow, I chose to look away from out of fear of not ever finding myself (out of fear of not ever finding  m y s e l f  )

 

9 – 25 November 2016 ~ Arroyo Seco, NM

The Kitchen, the Friend, the Heart of the Question

The small ritual

placing things here

attending with water

adding cleansing agents

rinsing while ordering my world

anew with each breath

of this morning

setting things just so

 

I think of my friend

and how she doesn’t reach out

at least not that I know of

perhaps ordering her world

just so, attending with

what I can only guess at

but still ordering her world

whether it’s apparent or not

 

Which brings me to

the question, the heart of it

as I ask many questions,

each being a facet of the one,

what calls me to pause

in concern (is it concern?)

in a wish for her (what is my wish?)

to find the deepening element

 

That which has its own way

of upsetting the cart, which

carries it all: hers, mine,

yours, ours, and what is

not any of these

Another question filters in,

is it peripheral or the very heart,

as what can be carried is surely external

 

Returning to the kitchen

another cup of tea is poured

My friend perhaps wakes now

almost a thousand miles away

The question is a living vein of

vitality, ardor, nuance –a distillery

extracting the purity of the disturbed,

the trace minerals of this Ancient Now

Turning (my) World Inside Out

I am not a poet ~ the world, as I know it, is.

Everything everywhere.

 

I am not a woman ~ this world is a woman’s domain

and I am in it and of that.

 

Nature does not surround me ~ I am nature itself

and I live within  my own sphere.

 

I am not someone imagining what the world might become.

I am that becoming or that emergence in the making.

 

Hesitation ~ where and what are you? What is this task?

What are we creating as this conversation,

not much different than gestation, something earlier conceived.

 

Looking out is no more ~ it is not even looking within, it is the active principle

such as breath and breathing ~ continuous and life evolving,

does not need to be named to continue.

 

Approval ~ what are you ~ takes a unique set of circumstances

to make you relevant, to make your existence, to map the terrain

in which you stretch and wallow and bring forth your experience.

 

[There are many things we regularly turn inside out (socks, clothes), some even surprisingly, but when it comes to turning this world inside out ~ what of it? What not of it? When can I not do or see or perceive that is so when I receive that calling? Like birth, it comes of its own accord and in its own timing ~ such that we have evolved something we call death. Is that the world turned inside out, birth becomes something reversibly irreversible?]

 

The world is not me, I am the world emerging and forthcoming

~ only perception forms and forms and forms again.

 

Sometimes it takes listening to these things loudly, not quietly as some might suggest.

Turn the volume inside out and there is the advantage, the preeminent seeing of what is.

 

Turning the world inside out, I turn myself out into a world that has

not once yet rejected me or scorned me or humiliated me, but

has me at its very crystalline heart beat, pulsing as aliveness and ardor.

 

The world as poet opens her domain to the wide spread arms

of welcoming ~ laughing itself awake to itself, hesitatingly unhesitant.