Come to my garden

Come to my garden.
The one where the roses open in the silence of the night.
The one where my secret sorrows gently wash away the dust from the path,
so that your feet may step onto it.
The garden where tears also water the roses
– the ones that open in the silence of the night.
Come.
You will feel your sorrows leave you,
just like the dust on the path.
Come.
I await.
Right here,
near the roses that open in the silence of the night.

Kenza.

Deconstruction

[Instructions: Read … or cut in little pieces and put back together as you wish … or don’t read at all.]

The old man
reading the telephone book
at the beach.
Deconstructing the population,
re-ordering it in alphabetical order.
Page three onwards,
it gets as boring as reading Derrida.
But telephone books don’t exist anymore!
Which reminds me that
you can’t make prank calls anymore either!
Remember them?

But now you can voice an opinion
even if you know nothing
five thousand kilometers
away from the blasphemous dictator
… it helps and shields
and allows you to say
whatever you want.
Just like a prank call.
And yet…
Have you thought
of the consequences
for the ones trapped
five thousand kilometers away?
If drones visit them,
well you know…
it’s complicated!
Certainly more complicated
than laughing at the butcher
after he told you he had pigs’ feet.

Oh and that zit on the nose
and the wrinkles
and the sad face
all of them erased
by computer magic.
Is that de-construction
or re-construction?

[I always get them mixed up.]

Now everyone shows up
so so happy!
Hiding the tears – what tears?
Hiding the loneliness – I’m not lonely!
Speak for yourself!

Oh and we still have that capacity
you know
of blowing up the earth
forty times over!
Just like that!
Without even moving our toes.

Tell that to the old man
reading the phonebook
attached to a web of tubes
sustaining his breathing.
But his life?
Oh who cares!
He gets to live long so
do not complain!

Everyone wants that
you know …
a loooong life
and to be young
and to stay young.
What happened to that
growing old gracefully?
Remember the ad?
Now no one wants that.
They want a loooong life.
Don’t they realize how empty it will become?

[Additional instructions: there are four “o” in long. That’s Shi in Japanese. Do you know what else it means? No? Here is a hint: ]

Oh but science my friends!
Science!

A table is basically made
of a gazillion particles
where 99.99999% of each particle
is made of emptiness space.
Yes!
But when you tell them
that we are all larger
than the sum of our parts,
they all chant in unison
and out of tune:
“Nonsense! Irrational! Preposterous!”

Ok then.
I have no idea why I am writing all this.
Oh well just… You know…
Tangents….
I have always loved mathematics
almost as much as language
Wait hold on…
Language!

They also messed with that!
Didn’t you know?
Now he and she and it
and me and you
must all be used
ap-pro-pri-a-te-ly
and if possible all at the same time
so as to offend no one.
Hum…
So if I understand correctly,
it is back to the phonebook method.
De Saussure

[Ha! “de chaussure!”]

and Derrida must be pleased;
but not Plato, the master of ideas,
nor Russell, the one of logic.

[Even more instructions: if you have no clue what I am talking about, cut in little pieces, mix well and make a puzzle.]

So I decided:
he is all of you,
and she is just me!

And the plays and the operas!
Now they take away
the plots and replace them
with stupidity…

[It is the first time I use this word, kindly note my restraint.]

A gentle lady Macbeth,
an Ophelia that remains alive,
a Sisyphus that makes it up the mountain,
an Oedipus without love tangles,
and Carmen Oh! Carmen!
No longer selling cigarettes
nor her body…
“L’amour est un oiseau rebelle
que nul ne peut apprivoiser…”
No more…
They placed it in a cage
with a label
and a responsible attitude.
So adjust your tie please.

As for me well…
This year I will turn an absolute number!
I love it and it gets
rarer with age.

[I told you I liked mathematics.]

I will take full advantage of it
since it can only be divided by one and itself.
So I will be renewed
just as I am.
My heart will not be fractioned
and no one will be able
to deconstruct me!
Ha!

Kenza.


Music: Julia Migenes-Johnson sings “L’amour est un oiseau rebel” from the Opera Carmen. 

The offering

The wrinkles at the corner of my eyes
can tell many stories.
I am old you see, very old,
older than the faded carpet I sit on.
My eyes are deep.
They contain the secrets of alchemists
and infinite horizons of dazzling colours.
Salaam
I come in peace, always in peace.
I am wrapped in green
and offer a cup of saffron tea
to the ones who visit me.
When it touches their lips,
it turns into wine.
I speak the universal language of the reed,
the one of a thousand smiles.
And I like to wrap each smile
very carefully in words of poetry.
I then offer them to the ones
who have embraced roses.
I know the thorns penetrated their skin,
I have my own scares.
Please accept my offering.

Kenza.


Music: Ney by Ostad Hassan Kasaie استاد حسن کسایی (Iran, 1928-2012).

Le cœur est une vaste maison

Le cœur est une vaste maison avec de larges fenêtres qui restent grandes ouvertes en toutes saisons.

Les êtres qui croisent notre temps y viennent et s’y reposent au milieu de vieilles choses à l’ombre du vent.

Et ceux qui nous ont aimés portent une traîne ondulante et frêle comme un pétale de cerisier.

En entrant, ils posent sur nos têtes une couronne d’amour, une couronne si légère qu’avec délice, elle devient lumière et illumine cette vaste maison aux vastes fenêtres.

Kenza.

The Tao: three treasures

If I may, I share here one passage from the “Tao Te Ching,” a book I actually read every morning. I read this passage to my nine year old son today, after we had a discussion on patience and reaching compromises with people who may not want to do so. I thought it offered three pieces of advice, which applicability is apt for most situations in life. Thank you.

“Some say my teaching is nonsense.
Others call it lofty but impractical.
But to those who have looked inside themselves,
this nonsense makes perfect sense.
And to those who put it into practice,
this loftiness has roots that go deep.

I just have three things to teach:
simplicity, patience and compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both your friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings of the world.”

– Poem 67 of the “Tao Te Ching” by Lao Tzu (VIth. c. BCE), translated by Stephen Mitchell (1999).

Sadness

Sadness is an immense meadow.
A misty meadow filled with elegant trees,
branches laden with silent love.

Live your sadness thoroughly
like a rainy day that seems to never end.
Shed tears. Shed them all.

Let sadness devastate you,
crush your heart
until slowing it to the limits of life.

Then let the intense force of love,
the very root and fruit of sadness,
awake it all.

Let love open your eyes
and pull you up so that you may stand
in the vast meadow of sadness.

Let love reveal to you
that state of grace that only beauty confers.
Let it enrobe you with its immeasurable tenderness.

Yes, the world is often rough and cunning,
shattering our most intimate thoughts
and forcing us to doubt the simple beauty in our lives.

So open your eyes and take in the beauty.
Let all your sadness become a piece of cloud,
then place it inside your heart so that love may find a place to rest.

Kenza.