Darkness and Light

Ben Howard Click to

BenHoward2.jpg-sizedBen Howard’s most recent books are Entering Zen (Whitlock, 2011), a collection of seventy-five essays on Zen practice, and Leaf, Sunlight, Asphalt (Salmon, 2009), his sixth collection of poems. His blog “One Time, One Meeting,” may be found at www.practiceofzen.wordpress.com  He is Emeritus Professor of English at Alfred University, where he leads the Falling Leaf Sangha, a Zen practice group for students and the community.

The darkness around us is deep.
— William Stafford

Still and all, Stafford kept on going,
morning after morning at his table.

I see him now, sitting in my armchair,
eyes half-closed, resting his fertile mind.

You never know, he told me once in passing,
where, when you shoot it, a bullet will end up.

May he rest, whose mind so seldom rested,
probing as it did the world’s unending darkness.


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