Forest for the Trees

Try this writing exercise. Stand very close to the trunk of a tree. Observe closely any details you see. Write down these details using color, size, and shape words to give your reader a clear picture of what you are seeing. Take two steps backward. Again observe what you about the tree and record it. […]


Robert Aitken in his wonderful book, The Dragon Who Never Sleeps, Parallax Press, 1992, shares many beautiful gathas born from his life as a Buddhist. A gatha is a Buddhist vow that expresses the interconnectedness and interdependence of a person with the entire world. Here’s a sample from his book: When birdsong is loud in […]


A tanka is a classic form of Japanese poetry. A tanka has five lines with a traditional pattern of 5, 7, 5, 7, 7 syllables. In addition to being a popular form of love poem for centuries, the tanka form has also been the vehicle for expressing interconnectedness with nature. Here is a personal tanka […]