Five Nails

One : Air

It is quiet on the beaches.

There is no one around. And the sounds
of the breeze and the waves
are as no sound now. No one to hear them.

But soon a person comes to enjoy the silence.
And then the sounds begin.

Someone is sitting there
absorbed in the sound
of the surf as that sound rolls
wild across the dunes.

And soon the wind begins to blow from over the water.

First it disturbs the gulls that stand on the wharfs.
Then the wharfs themselves begin to become
disturbed from the strength the wind is developing.
Little by little the wind
makes a larger sound
and increases the menace. 

The garments of the person
seated on the strand
flutter in the gathering wind. 

Now all is a tumult of sand and sound, water and air
aswirl in an enormous turbulence. The person
as long as that is possible. But soon this person too
flies up on the wind. 

It blows his hair away.
It blows the skin from his body.
Soon the bones and flesh are strewn among
particles of sand and mist the wind sends.
Soon his bones are blown to powder
and bones and sand
swirl in the wind.

Only the sound

Two: Water

All of us, sitting in a park, in rows and rows
and rows of rows and rows. Filling it everywhere.

As far as one can see
rows of beings sit on quiet couches
smiling, aware, awake; cognizant of all the other beings
sitting in rows, resting on couches.

The air is clear, the breeze
vivifying, wafting pleasant vernal smells,
pungent temple smells, or no smells,
just as each requires, sitting as each pleases.

To each as to each is pleasing. The sky
is quiet, shining.
Each is still.
Blissful feelings pass in constant waves across the fold,
rising simultaneously everywhere,
passing from each to the next and quietly subsiding.
Across the vast expanse
a perfect cloud appears --
to each of us it seems to form itself
a distant point above the far horizon --
to each an interesting speck, a salutary blemish,
increasing the perfection of the sky

growing slightly, slowly, showing a perfect shape,
ovoid, ivory white
with delicate puffs and ruffles,
buff, or flush with vermilion, edged in gold.

To each the colors to the pleasure of each.
To each increasing in volume and variety
as each commits attention to its forming.
A gorgeous object poised in the center of the sky,
compelling the sky, controlling the vista for all
and each. The luminous shining dome of perfect turquoise
fringes the clouds. And columns of skylight fan about it.


And now in the edge of the cloud a speck or blotch of gray
cloud first appears. It appears as if a doubt
in the eye of one of us, a mote in one of the eyes,
sent to test a doubt.

And soon another of us marks the blemish --
some being off somewhere,
far across the park in another row
assumes the doubt
and knows the speck.

And another blot appears in the luminous cloud face.
And spotted across the field of rows and rows
doubting blots appear across the clouds --
clouds and specks and blots --

to each according to the doubts of each.

The air is clear.
The beings sit in rows.


Now rain falls from the cloud.
Rain falls from the clouds.
The grass is moist.
We sit in rows.
Mist moves in from the sky.
The park is drenched from the downpour.
Little rivulets rush from the park pavilion
meandering rapidly between the sitting rows.

The rain seems more than rain.
Waterfalls crash from pavilions.
Across the shining sky the sea appears.
Enormous, white-crested billows approach from afar.
We sit in rows.
The water rushes at us
loosening the trees
dissolving the knots in the mortar of pavilions.
The roofs come crashing down.
The people sit in their garments, soaked in the overflush.
The trees of the park, uprooted, roll about,
the bark dissolves,
our clothes dissolve.

Now naked rows of persons sit in the flood.
The water lifts up one of us out of the row we have.
And now another -- lifted, tossed, deposited
into a maw of waters.

Soon across the fold
waves of water break the seated rows.
Persons tossed in the billows --
the mind of each intent upon the water.
The thoughts of each arush in growing waters.
Soon the limbs of one of us, softened in the deluge,
					    fall into the deluge.
Soon the thoughts of one of us floods the world.
A deluge of rushing memory and intellect
commingling with water-sotted digits, limbs and torsos.
The thought of water rushing
		fills the scene of water rushing --
vermilion billows roll across the minds --
billowing intellects (flecked with gold and black)
					flash across the flood --
water into water passing --
flux into flux resolved --
chaos swallowed up in its nature --
doubt swallowed up in doubt --

Two thoughts: 

two white signata
sign the Void.

Three: Fire 

Dweller in cabins on the outskirts, lush.
Luscious jungle growths enclose.

And on the outskirts of the outskirts,
little fires start up.

The marshals are not concerned.
They continue smoking at their posts.

And now the little houses start to burn.
The paper walls go up on sensate flashes. Quietly
the persons depart and only I myself
am seated

I am seated on my mat and the sounds of far off fires
begin to reach me. I am not alarmed.

I can hear the susurration, the sizzle, the wings
of birds, the crackling of exotic bark. 

I am at ease, at leisure.
There is time as large as the wings of birds
beating above the encampment.
The fires now ring the encampment.
The sounds and cries and rushing
of little groups of mammals reach my ears.
I am unconcerned. I listen
as the roar of conflagration closes round me.

The flames reach far beyond the tallest trees now.

The flames
with the sky. Their momentary turrets pierce the cumuli.
The heat of it rises in huge ballooning canopies. 

Waves of it fan across the porches where I linger.
Soon the walls will be aflame. Now the walls
are all aflame. 

The searing heat consumes my cubicle. It cannot be endured.
My clothes begin to blaze and the flames
begin to needle me everywhere. I am unconcerned.
Enormous sensations penetrate and consume me.
My belly my hair my skin take flame.
My singed flesh blackens
and bubbles up like pizza crust. 

Flames from the end of the Aion flash about
till flames consume themselves in a single nature. 


Three red signs
shine in the void.

Four: Earth

The earth is still.

You are sitting there
on your little wooden bench
knitting your shoes.

Or using a delicate hammering instrument
to curve the copper object cupped in your hands.

Or talking to friends in the summer afternoon
sitting on long benches
around a wooden table.

A house with a porch and a lawn
upon  a street
with other well-kept houses -- lawns and porches.

You hear a sound on the air, dark and rumbly.
Distant thunder, one of the friends proposes.

You sniff the air for the odor of thunder
but there is no odor.

You watch the upper branches of the maples.
A little breeze. No sense of impending motion.

You sit on the ground.

Or stand.

Or adopt a definitely hunched posture, leaning over the table.

A few old stones lie about the feet of a few old trees.

Some rumbling once again, far to the north,
a bit like a herd of mammals from afar.
The sound is a sound approaching --
subtly ominous.
Each wave of approaching rumbling
rumbles closer still.

The intervals of time between the sounds
grow shorter now

and louder sounds overwhelm the softer ones
and larger sounds
supercede the small.

You are sitting now or standing, no one hunched now.
No one talking or attending the little tasks
upon which each had been, but a few moments earlier,
occupied so intently.

You notice the many little sounds within the larger sounds:
crackling sounds and whistling ones; the noise
of a huge thing, striking the ground with a thud;
the metal parts of intricate machinery
toppling to the floor with a cascade of crackling sounds.

Things are shaking now.
The objects and the table rattle and buzz.
The hammer falls to the ground.
The leaves of the maples all ablur.
The stones roll over other stones
and set off on a course -- then leave that course.

You sit alone. Holding your bench.
The others sit alone.
Or stand.
Holding the beams of the cottage porches for ballast.

Things are moving in the air now --
shingles from the slanted rooftops fall from the rooftops
and start upon random courses through the trees.
The shaking of things increases.
The clothes upon your body vibrate oddly.
The seat upon the ground begins to exert
terrible pressure against you. You stand.
Or sit on the ground.

The ground is moving now.

The sounds of falling things ring all about.
An enormous tumult encloses on all sides.
All the buildings are falling down
rising in the air and crashing to the earth.
The earth itself rises up
thrusting boulders into the air.
You can see people everywhere
attempting to assume control of their motion
popping off the earth, falling, scampering,
being thrown across their porches onto the lawns.

The things in flight begin to vibrate uncontrollably.
The outer surfaces are first to fall away.
Then the inward machines disintegrate and scatter.

Shirts are torn from bodies, bodies from themselves.

The sky is a welter of human parts and thing parts
streaming in a vast display.

You yourself are among them.
The thoughts you have
begin to come asunder.

You see your thoughts rattling in the foreground
rapidly becoming other thoughts.
Your memories shake and vibrate -- they fly out of you
as you yourself are strewn
across the vast expanse.
You see the thoughts of all things come apart
from each -- each person, thought, and thing
an item in a centerless turbulence without gravitation.
All things grow smaller now.

Everything that can be shaken loose
has been shaken loose. 

The parts are as small as they can become.

An infinite dust rains across the void.

The motionless void consumes the dust.

Four black signs remain

at the front of the world.

Five : Space

There really is no
space. The blue
resumes the mind.

All of them are gone now.
All of the other creatures -- people or whatever.

All of you are gone now

All of me are gone now

into the open space
the mind itself
resumes --

The things of sense relax in their true condition.

The houses relax -- the walls
          remaining walls
                          give a little --

The furniture responds to the weight of people or things --
the joints relax --
the brittle glue grows moist again

The things of mind relax -- all one
blue gust of oxygen, one bottomless
sky. The platforms floating down it --

And on each platform, each of us, sitting absorbedly --

The body of each of us

Blue -- absorbed in its nature . . . 


Blue the dark

    and Blue the work . . .