Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Just Watching Ants

Weaving seemingly random patterns across the blue brick path the tiny black ants are busy, moving in such ways as if to suggest straight lines do not belong to their DNA. Science tells me they are following scent trails as they venture to and from their nest somewhere beneath the bricks. The world must seem vast to them, just as the world seems vast to my own senses. One vastness nestled into another, each stretching out into its own infinity. 

Observing the mind is like watching ants; apparently random thoughts, images, and sense impressions flickering across the screen of knowing. It is not always obvious where the trail leads. Yet how often these tracks run in unbidden ways, merging sensory information, yearning and desire, with a need to try and make some kind of 'sense' of it all. Find a pattern, one that is not simply a narrative we create, we weave to justify ourselves. To find ourselves, to know which one offers the greatest hope. That is the hardest part, being mind and yet needing to be able to detach sufficiently to know the mind. We speak of 'I', yet this 'I' is also stranger we see on a train heading perhaps to another destination, a glimpse of a face on a busy street, one perchance we would not recognise again.

So which way to turn now? Which scent path to follow? Questions tumble one after the other like the wind rushing on through the trees, the stream that runs over gravel shoals, the air full of birdsong. Perhaps all there is, is the quest itself.

Asleep at the bottom of the garden
The fox ignores the full washing line,
Such tasks of no concern at all.

Cascading over the wall
Next door’s clematis in flower
The beauty of the neglected wall
Suddenly revealed.

Seemingly released
From a tangle of branches -
Half a moon.

Spiralling upward.
The sacred hour
A gateless gate
between dark and light.

Chasing an errant snail
Whilst sweeping the room.
Gathering poems
To offer up to you.

Breaking the diamond
touching source and end
Mind a Mirror.

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