how do i say…

my friend birrell walsh posted this to an email list i’m part of. it captures well how i think of our work in open space…

“How do I say, in your language,
to allow a space to open
inside oneself, no – *as* oneself –
and in that space to have
such welcoming that others
come there too, not as images,
no, but *as* themselves;
and in unfolding as themselves
within the spacing you are being-as
they find ease and freedom (by the way)
to be well. How do I say that,
in your language,” he, moving his tongue
around unfamiliar syllables, asked
so he could teach me.

if you like this, you might like some of his other poetry. he has a book posted at there are two of his favorite poems there, on the lulu product page.

in case you’re inspired to purchase, it’s worth noting that given the weird economics of publishing right now, he makes more money from the download (US$5.00 to the purchaser) than from the printed copy (US$22.00 plus shipping). but of course, hardcopy is still hardcopy. the book itself is beautiful, very well and sturdily made, and with a remarkable cover photograph from the collection of another friend, one radmila krieger, of munich.

if you want to know what birrell actually looks and sounds like, or just want somebody to read poems to you, he read twelve of his poems into his webcam and posted to youtube.

or maybe it’s enough just to enjoy this one, that seems to understand our work so well.