Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on stumbleupon
Share on email

Arts of the Ancient World
 
            after Yeshe Tsogyal
 I.

I run / into the art museum / a wild animal
           standing in the shiny echo / white foyer
           past / the giant plush ottoman / fuchsia
           big enough / for my fat body / to snow angel
 
I run / down the hall / the dark-wood grain / chestnut and mahogany / under my feet
I run / to the room / full of tiny / ancient sculptures / bronze / marble / petrified wood
 
I stop / for a small / alabaster man / copper / carbon / black zinc oxide
            lapis lazuli / eyes / mother of pearl / pleading
            hands / folding / in a knot / at his heart2
 
I hear / the maker’s children / giggling
I smell / the campfire / smoking
I hold / carving knives / in all my hands
 
the twelve kinds of matter / are only my bones and my skin1
we are not two / yet you look for me outside
 
human beings / love pleasure
protect ourselves / against pain
create little objects / of deep love
 
we love / this world / when we let ourselves / touch it
 
II.
 
breathe in / I want to shout / the smell of juniper
before we lose / touch / with the land
love this world / I want to shout / it is your whole body
 
when you find me within yourself
the joy of the One / will hold you like a lake—
its fish with gold-seeing eyes / will grow many and fat
 
without it / without this world / without this body / we are nothing
without it / there is no security / no food / no hunger / no joy
without it / there is no fear / and no protection
 
III.
 
I run / out of the art museum / a wild animal / insisting
           let people feel / all the pleasure
           because we know so well / all the pain
           and / in the end / none of us deserves it
           all this pain / all this pleasure
                       
                       we just have it / it is ours
 
IV.
 
go / into / the world
     / listen /
     / smell /
                 / look /
                 / taste /
                 / hold / the tools / of making / in all your hands
                       
            enter / the sky-fields / and vanish
  
1 Yeshe Tsogyal (aka Victorious Ocean of Wisdom aka Wisdom Lake Queen) was the Mother of Tibetan Buddhism, 757–817 CE. Excerpts from Women in Praise of the Sacred: 43 Centuries of Spiritual Poetry by Women, ed. Jane Hirshfield, HarperPerennial, 1995. Book shared by my therapist in 2007. Poem carried in my wallet ever since.
 
2 Votive Figure, 2900-2300 BCE, The Menil Collection, Houston, Texas. Early Dynastic. Iraq or Syria. 12 × 4 ½ × 4 in. 1983-136 DJ.

~

Kaylen Rose is a writer, editor, and teacher in Lexington, Kentucky. As an MFA Candidate in poetry at the University of Kentucky, she writes about visual art, spiritual practice, life in a body, and the culture of human relationship. Kaylen also holds a BA in Visual Arts from Rice University and an MA in Engaged Humanities from the Pacifica Graduate Institute. Connect with Kaylen on Instagram @yayitskaylen or on her website, kaylenrose.com.

Julia Vinograd

partnership to support the Julia Vinograd movie

Julia Vinograd was a poet. Perhaps you haven’t heard of her, which is all the shame. Ken Rosenthal plans to change that with his forthcoming documentary. Julia Vinograd: Between Spirit

Kaia Gleason

Kaia Gleason – New Art Director

Gnashing Teeth Publishing is excited to announce Kaia Gleason has joined the Gnashing Teeth team as Art Director. We had the pleasure of working with Kaia recently as she provided

Pushcart Prize Nominees Announced

Share on facebook Share on twitter Share on linkedin Share on twitter Share on stumbleupon Share on email We are so excited to announce our nominees for the Pushcart Prize! POETRY: “The

Best of the Net Nominees 2021

we are so excited to announce our nominees for Best of the Net 2021. we submitted 6 poems and 3 pieces of artwork for the 2021 season. The Best of the

scorpion

ennui or waiting

as summer creeps in with 100 degree heat and scorching sun, it is easy to stay sequestered in the air conditioning. the past year of quarantine has made the inside

connect

we love hearing from you. tell us everything